Is it pos­si­ble?

Canal Boat - - Let­ters - JOHN H ROGERS JR, via email

I’M A FLORIDA na­tive but lived for sev­eral years in the Ox­ford area, where I be­came in­ter­ested in nar­row­boats. On a re­cent trip back to the UK, I bought your mag­a­zine and ran across the third in­stal­ment of Boat­ing in Amer­ica ( CB, April).

Per­haps this was ad­dressed in an ear­lier, but do you know whether the Ainsworths were of the opin­ion that a nar­row­boat could have done the jour­ney that they did on the St Lu­cie River, across Lake Okee­chobee and up the At­lantic ICW? That is, could a nar­row­boat han­dle the large boat wakes, open-wa­ter chop and even, with a care­ful weather win­dow picked, the oc­ca­sional pop out­side into the At­lantic for a run be­tween in­lets?

I’m not ask­ing whether it would be un­com­fort­able or un­usual oc­ca­sion­ally for a boater ac­cus­tomed to English canals. I mean, could it be done, with­out any real dan­ger, by some­one who was care­ful and had some time to wait for weather win­dows? Jane Ainsworth replies: “Bear in mind that I am only the gal­ley slave/laun­dress/cleaner and have noth­ing to do with nav­i­ga­tion/boat han­dling/route plan­ning, but the short an­swer is ‘no.’

“There were times when Ca­rina, our 38ft trawler, was rock­ing and rolling through the wa­ter and I was grate­ful only for the fact that I wasn’t in our nar­row­boat at the time.

“How­ever, it has been done. There’s a very good book on the jour­ney from Nor­folk, Vir­ginia to In­dian River in Florida (Nar­row Dog to In­dian River, by Terry Darlington) which de­scribes Terry and his wife Monica’s jour­ney in an English nar­row­boat they im­ported to the U.S.

If you want a fuller ac­count of our ad­ven­tures, have a look at my blog www. tales­fromthe amer­i­can­wa­ter­ways.com” @CanalRiverTrust My #photo walk along a stretch of Re­gent’s Canal Want to take a #canal­boat hol­i­day this year but not sure where? Maybe this from @Canal_Boat will help!

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