Standedge Tunnel is 5,029 metres (over 3 miles) long, and is the highest, longest, and the deepest canal tunnel, and we went through it yesterday! Can’t say it was the most relaxed journey, John looked shell shocked at the end of it, and Rusty had to be medicated!
We should have had an inkling when John was handed a hard hat by the chaperones who took us through the tunnel, the hat was scratched and scuffed on the top.
Rusty and I were down stairs, with all curtains open, and all lights on. Poor lad (Rusty) was shaking, panting, and his ears were back; he wasn’t happy. To help him I gave him a dose of his Metacam medicine, it’s a painkiller, with the effect of relaxing him and making him sleepy. If I’d have thought; I should have walked him over the top of the tunnel, and met John on Cyan at the other side; risking being called ‘chicken’.
After breakfast we stripped down Cyan’s roof, took off the chimney, dismantled the canopy, and the cratch cover, removed the flowers. and filled up the water tank. Cyan was measured to see if she was too big to get in the tunnel, luckily we passed the test.
Because I was downstairs, pacifying Rusty, I didn’t see much of the journey. Though I did hear from John that at certain times in the tunnel he was steering Cyan on his knees.
We moored up just before the first lock on the ‘East Side’ (Yorkshire), and put Cyan back together again.
There is abundant history surrounding this magnificent engineering achievement by our Victorian ancestors. The image is of ‘Leggers’ walking a boat through the 3 mile tunnel.
As the tunnel was excavated by hand it is not precisely straight and the interior changes from raw exposed rock face to beautifully constructed brick arches. From cathedral like caverns to almost impassable sections were the headroom is almost nil!
We will take time out today to take a look into the Visitors Centre before heading off towards Huddersfield.
Navigation note: While out walking Rusty last evening, the pound below lock #41 was almost empty.
In general the Eastern section has a serious water level problem.
WiFi is pretty good! 3 miles and no locks