Cruise down the tidal

markosy

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I am planing a trip from Walton and back in July for 3 days and seek advice on how far it would be possible to go down the tidal section with two overnight stops.On the return route I plan to stop at St Kathrines or Limehouse.The boat we will be using is a Fletcher Faro with a 70 HP outboard, so the question is how far could we get on the 1st day leaving early and prepared for a long day.

Advice would be welcomed
 

SoulFireMage

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We've been out to Rochester Bridge marina from St Katherines in our previous boat-a 24 knot Broom 35 sedan.

Two things. Firstly it was only a few hours from St Kat's to Rochester-It was two seasons ago and lots of drinks so how many hours I'm not dead sure, about 2.5 hours or so.

Secondly if I had to do it again, I would NOT use St Kats but go straight into Limehouse.

Our experience is that they mess about at St Kats as far as locking in is concerned-the whole procedure took an hour, and we had to wait 3/4hr for them to open the locks for us. That part of the river by Tower Bridge is quite turbulent indeed!! Also they buggered up the berth assignment so we ended up pinching someone elses!!

Twice the price of Limehouse.
There is only one advantage of St Kats-it's trendier and there's more nightlight, links to local transport etc It's noisier too LOL.

Limehouse on the other hand couldn't be more helpful-radio'd in, they had it ready within 5 minutes. British Waterways staff, got us through in minutes and on the correct berth.

It is quieter at Limehouse, a lot quieter. Also there are more older/smaller craft there than at the more upmarket St Kats. It's also more secure unless St Kats has changed!!

From Limehouse to Teddington with the tide its about 2.5-3 hours.



I think it's about 2 hours to Teddington, providing you've got your timetable right and you go through fairly quickly it's about 2-3 hours to St Kats. St Kats are quite restrictive about the times they open the locks whereas Limehouse are more flexible.

I'd look at Chatham Maritime, the old dockyard as apparently you can get in there at all states of the tide. However to reach this far, the tides need to be bang on for you timing wise!

That's our experience if that helps...it's what I can remember from our single 2 week holiday down that way.
 

byron

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How much fuel you carry? Seems to me that is going to be your main problem. Your speeds will take care of any tides you encounter.
 

Nautorius

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I did Essex Marina (Crouch) to Just below Walton in 6.5 Hours last year in a 23ft boat. The Faro can cope no problem. You will need fuel though. You can easily get to the Mudway as well.

Cheers

paul /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif
 

oldgit

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Agree with MrB.Need to double check that you have the fuel capacity to complete any journey past Tedddington.Other posters will have better info,but cannot bring to mind any downriver locations handy to river to top up.
 

markosy

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Thank you to all for your advice, regarding fuel capacity I have two 25 L tanks, based on previous trips on the locked section I can only run the engine at 1500-2000 rpm due to the speed restrictions the engine uses approx 1 L per mile but is probably un-economical due to the low speed?? would it be more economical once the boat was on the plane ??
 

Andrew_Fanner

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[ QUOTE ]
Agree with MrB.Need to double check that you have the fuel capacity to complete any journey past Tedddington.Other posters will have better info,but cannot bring to mind any downriver locations handy to river to top up.

[/ QUOTE ]

There are walkable petrol stations close to both St Kats and Limehouse, I suspect also Grays/Thurrock where there is a yacht club with buoy moorings, certainly in Grays but never walked to YC from fuel station. Can't speak for Erith/Greenwich or Bow Creek..
 

Chris_d

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Your going to need a lot more fuel, depends how far you want to go of course, but you should reckon on the worse case fuel consumption, up to 5knts about 5mpg, 5-8knts 3mpg, planing maybe 3-4mpg. Remember the tide will have a big effect though, to get to central London for any marina tidal gate, you will have to punch the tide, this will almost double your consumption on the speed restricted stretch.
I've done this trip in a petrol boat before and it is a bit of a nightmare if you want to refuel and keep going. The petrol stations near St Kats and Limehouse are not that near when your carrying a full jerry can, take a trolley! I reckon your two 25L tanks would get you to St Kats or Limehouse and back to Teddington, but it would be very close and not worth the risk. If you want to go further carry another 3 or 4 20L jerry cans at least and keep going to the Medway where you can refuel for the return journey.
 

miket

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At the risk of appearing cruel, I hope you know more about general navigation, especially through the pool of London than you appear to know about your boat.
At non-tidal river speeds your outboard will be sipping petrol. At higher speeds it will passing through your engine barely touching the sides!! Your 2 25 l tanks total 10 gallons in old money and even at the suggested 3 mpg will only get you 30 miles from full to empty. You should anticipate a 20% safety margin which brings you down to 8 gallons and 24 miles, so you may make St Kat's without refuelling if you can fill up very close to Teddington.
Personally, I think you are daft to even contemplate it!
Sorry.
If you want to go to the Medway (can't think why) bung it on a trailer and drive. It will cost a fraction!!
 

beards

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But surely the whold idea is the experience of being afloat down the river, so driving with the boat on the back defeats the object. Journey planning is the answer or am I missing something!
 

BillyBloater

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I have been planning a similar trip.

-see previous thread -

http://www.ybw.com/forums/showflat.php/Cat/0/Number/1448662/an/0/page/0#1448662

As always lots of good advice from forum members. I took a drive out to Teddington, St Kats and Gallions Point yesterday to get a better idea of what I would be in for.

The Lock Keeper (Howard) at Teddington was very very helpful and gave me some hints and tips he also has a guide that looks like it will be dead usefull.

St Kats looked very smart and the guy there was also helpfull. They are to close at the end of this week until 20th July for maintenance work (I think on the inner lock gates). This may rule them out for you. A very nice hotel at St Kats although out of my price range at £300.00 per night !!.

Gallions Point looked like a good option. Maybe not the pretiest of locations but for me it is a reasonable distance from Teddington and I will pass most of the 'sites' geting there. Also plenty of cheap (ish) acommodation within fairly easy reach, thanks to excell.

The Docklands light railway is also nearby for access to the better part of town for the evening.

I have a 3.5 litre inboard with a 25 gallon main tank and I also have two removable 5 gallon tanks. Although this should be plenty of fuel I am still mindfull that it may be an issue.

From what I can gather the tidal Thames is somwhere you can not just more up if you fancy it - you really need to choose your destination and get there, enjoying the sites on the way.

Good luck and enjoy the trip !
 
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