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  1. I hadn't done route planning by the time it was called off, so I'm not sure, but this logic seems sound. We had got as far as deciding to come up via the Coventry canal and cruise the Ashby before coming into Birmigham on the B&F, so we'd also likely be moored somewhere centre of Birmingham tonight.
  2. Ah, I wondered why there were multiple entries for the stop last year - I had thought it had to be continuous but it seems the rule changed. We like getting some sleep though so I can't imagine us doing anything other than a single 6 hour stop - though like @TheBiscuits we will try to cut it as fine as possible, though if I recall we were 1 minute over the 6 hours last year due to unmooring slowly!
  3. While I'll admit to getting somewhat upset about this on Tuesday evening, I decided to just get over it and get on with our own run - if the rules were completely clear and people had enough time to plan then everyone aiming to win would probably have taken exactly the same route, which would've been dull. To be honest, I'm not sure the restriction of having to moor exactly on junctions added much - if this was run again I'd suggest you just got X hours cruising a day full stop and you had to moor at the limit (unless for some reason you chose not to use the full time), and instead maybe there was a bigger variety of slow/fast sections and/or randomly handing out "tyre round your prop, you lose 2 hours today cutting it off" penalties to different teams (based on live streamed dice rolls or something to show it was fair) in order to spread teams out and make us choose different route options. We've been discussing ideas like this in our team along the lines of thinking about making a BCN challenge board game, but who knows if we'll ever get around to even prototyping such a thing! We also thought that a nicer way of handling the historic sections might've been not to include them on the score card at all, so each team would have to do their research to locate historic branches and work out distances and locks (and provide references with their scorecard), but obviously now too much has been written about in the forum to make running it that way interesting - and maybe this would've provided too big an advantage to teams with access to good quality historic maps.
  4. Thank you! Sorry we didn't quite manage to repeat your 2016 success. We should be heading up the Grand Union and passing Weedon Bec once it's safe to cruise, and it would be lovely to see William for real! For those on other teams - we contacted Inland Navigators out of the blue, asking if we could virtually hire William for the challenge - just on the basis that we thought it would be fun to be on a more traditional boat than Rebellion given the theme of exploring the history. We didn't know anything about the boat other than what was on the Inland Navigators website, and didn't even realise that William had competed (and won!) in 2016. Tim and Bridget very kindly gave us their blessing and supplied us with some photos both from their challenge run and elsewhere, which was very handy for illustrating our posts, especially as they'd sent one of William in the snow! Though in the rush to research and create content for all the historic branches we didn't use as many as we had originally expected to. I have very little idea of the practicalities of running a Bolinder engine, so apologies for the lack of detail on that in our posts - I hope we might be able to take a look at it when we visit!
  5. Hmm, maybe it would be in the spirit of the challenge for us each to make our own out of whatever we have lying about
  6. We've made a small donation to each, but one thing we'll miss is having a challenge plaque. Does anyone know what the minimum order on such things might be and if anyone at BCNS might be interested in getting some made to raise funds?
  7. Congratulations Indigo Dream - that's a very impressive score! We thoroughly enjoyed the challenge, and although I confess I ended up having very little time to read other people's logs I always looked forward to finding out what was going to happen next in The Workers historical investigations. I also kept a close eye on Indigo Dream as they were doing almost the same route as us. For Team Rebellion on nb William, I'm pleased with 3rd place overall - I considered replanning once I understood how the rules on cruising more than 7 hours were being interpreted, but we had quite enough to do without that and it was probably too late to make up the missed points anyway. So I decided we'd just concentrate on winning the mini-league for boats that didn't go over the 7 hour/day cruising time limit - go team! Thanks to all the work put in by the organisers and log readers - it must have been a massive effort to mark all the cruise logs each day! I would say I look forward to doing it again sometime, but I'm not sure I'd want to sign up for another week now I know how much work is involved. Maybe we should just try doing it just over the weekend and in real boats sometime
  8. I think cheshire~rose was just asking for fun and interest for the rest of the people looking at the threads - I'm sure the checkers have the actual numbers in hand!
  9. I'm not sure why teams wouldn't submit their spreadsheet! Although I guess you need to double check everything anyway so maybe it wouldn't have helped that much. We rounded everything to the nearest 0.5 miles, as is done on the normal challenge. Given the partially completed sections don't score rule, I think different team's choice of rounding should only need to be considered for determining if they exceeded 7 hours/day.
  10. We covered: Day 1: 32 locks (or 30 if you don't count the lock on the Slough arm), 13.5 miles Day 2: 16 locks (Birchills both ways), 13 miles Day 3: 10 locks (up to Wyrley Bank and back), 14 miles Day 4: 20 locks (down to Walsall canal and back up to Wolverhampton level), 13 miles Day 5: 3 locks, 15.5 miles (original plan was 15 locks including a trip to Titford Pumphouse and only 14 miles) Day 6: 21 locks (back down to Walsall, up Bradley and Bradley Marr), 12.5 miles Total: 102 locks, 81.5 miles. 40 hours of cruising (we never exceeded the 7 hour limit). For comparison, last year's challenge I believe we did 82 locks and 36.5 miles in a little under 24 hours.
  11. Ah, I think he may have ended up with us, we passed him to Indigo Dream and they passed him back, but we mostly just kept bumping into each other! I'll check if any of the crew have him @HuggableHamster, @Amynotontheforum @smudgepuss?
  12. Sitting in the beer tent after the challenge, we got on to a discussion on curlitude. @HuggableHamster pointed out that the Barton Swing Aqueduct provides a point of infinite curlitude, and I can think of other points where canals cross each other, but what if we restrict the competition to distances between canal endpoints?
  13. Addendum: @Amynotontheforum’s further mutiny and punishment. Collected from witness statements and the accused testimony. @Amynotontheforumwas found guilty of mutiny and sentenced to chimney brushing, porta potty cleaning and coffee making duties for the remainder of the season. After the initial first mutiny death of a strawberry the crew thought all her gremlin activity had ceased. Unfortunately this was not to be as she was simply too much of a white devil. Setting up Mr Fake Duck like a lion in winter with her secret weapon, a yoghurt pot! Sneaking out of the boat she escaped up the 39 steps to the jetty (maintaining all social distancing) into the flying machine she had hidden near the bradley locks. Unfortunately it all got a bit brechtian too soon finding the fourth wall of the machine broken. Feeling as though today's gremlining was about to be much ado about nothing she stumbled upon an abandoned bbq on the quayside, after carefully sanitising the bbq Amy settled to a late lunch, before heading to the finish thinking alls well that ends well. However like the three musketeers the rest of the crew had been following her progress and once they found her at the finish, @Amynotontheforum was put to work and found guilty of misuse of her daily allowable quarantine exercise, avoiding lock wheeling duties, and making threats to yoghurt pots. She was banished to below decks for the remainder of the evening.
  14. Log time: 17:45 Location: The Big Finish, Bradley Workshops Emerging into the present we tie up our lines, disconnect our Automat Senschuct, and grease the stern gland. We look around to discover @Amynotontheforum had taken a shortcut to the party and had been tucking into the barbeque and beer already. We have some catching up to do! Log sent in, quiz summed up and our closing post written, we crack open our tipple of choice and wander over to chat to the other teams, content we have all our ducks in a row! Thank you to @cheshire~rose and all her team we have had a wonderful, silly and exhausting week. It feels like we’ve done something between a child’s history project and an industrial archeology PhD but we’ve learnt so much, and will, when we finally can move again, have to go and see some of the remains of these canals for ourselves!
  15. Log time: 17:25, Saturday 8th May 1802 We just had enough time before the finish for one last push down the staircase locks on the Bradley Marr branch and back up again. Alongside the branch is the colliery owned by Foley & Scott. We did have trouble working out where the exact path of the branch was to start with, as most of our source maps were newer than the canal, and we didn’t spot the bit that said ‘old canal’ for a while... Then, we found this lovely specimen, although we were a little confused by north being to the right: But then of course why would it be? We spend half our lives using Pearson’s maps after all!
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