Lancaster Canal – Moons Bridge to Guy’s Thatched Hamlet

My Monday walk this week was done in mid September and just four days after my canal walk from Garstang. My original plan was to walk from Moons Bridge Marina to Blackleach Marina just a couple of miles away in the Preston direction, however things didn’t quite work out like that. Moons Bridge Marina is situated off a narrow country lane with very few places to park safely and from where I left the van I had to walk up and over the bridge then down to the towpath on the far side – and that’s where, for once, my normally excellent sense of direction and the in-built satnav in my brain deserted me.
Moons Bridge Marina was developed from a canal-side farmer’s field over twenty years ago and has been owned and run by the same family ever since. After taking a few photos round the marina itself I headed along the lane and over the bridge to the canal towpath but that’s where I went wrong – instead of going ‘sort of’ southwest I went under the bridge and ‘sort of’ northeast and I only realised I’d gone wrong when I kept seeing the Bowland fells in the distance ahead of me. There was no point turning back and starting again though, and I knew where I would eventually get to anyway, so I decided to carry on.
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One thing which did surprise me as I walked along were the large stretches of surface weed on the water, something which I’ve only ever associated with ponds and other still waters; even when a boat travelled through it the weed would only momentarily disperse before covering the surface again. Another thing I noticed was the amount of pylons and power lines crossing the countryside; I know these things are essential in rural areas but I’ve never seen as many as that on any of my other walks.
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Although the sun kept disappearing behind a bank of white clouds it was still very warm and the light tracksuit top I was wearing was eventually taken off and tied round my waist. Being a weekday I had the canal to myself and I didn’t see anyone until I got to White Horse Bridge where I encountered a group of students and their teacher; they seemed to be doing some sort of field studies so I assumed they were probably from the agricultural college a couple of miles away. They were quite spread out across the narrow path so to give them chance to move on I went up onto the bridge to take a couple of shots looking over the canal and the surrounding countryside.
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From White Horse Bridge it was only just over a mile to Guy’s Thatched Hamlet; I was making that my turn around point and it wasn’t long before I started to see signs of civilisation and boats moored alongside the towpath. Going up onto the road passing Guy’s I took a couple of shots from the bridge before having a wander round the hamlet itself. When I was there in late May the whole placed had been closed and it had seemed strange with no-one around – now it was partially open and several people were enjoying drinks at outside tables but it still felt weird.
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While I’d been wandering round Guy’s the clouds had gradually been clearing away so the walk back to Moons Bridge was much sunnier and I was able to retake some of the shots I got earlier on. As I got near to the marina I realised something – throughout the whole of the walk I hadn’t heard any birdsong. Even though trees had lined the canal path in several places there hadn’t been a tweet or a chirp anywhere which I thought was very strange. Back at the marina I took my final two shots from the bridge and the lane then made my way back to the van to head for home.
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Although the walk had started out as a mistake and had covered more than twice the distance originally planned it had nevertheless been very enjoyable, and as I’d always planned to do that section of the canal at some point anyway, probably next year, it meant I could now tick it off my list a bit sooner than I intended.

16 thoughts on “Lancaster Canal – Moons Bridge to Guy’s Thatched Hamlet

  1. Guy’s is a very popular place and when the little shops are open it’s always busy under normal circumstances, even so it’s still a nice place to linger for a while at the side of the canal 🙂

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  2. I always like a canalside stroll, Eunice. Boating communities are usually friendly and nice to be around. And you still have the other walk for another day 🙂 🙂 Have a good week!

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  3. Canalside walks in the countryside are always so peaceful. I’m aiming to walk the full navigable length of the Lancaster but it’ll probably take a few years as I’m only doing it in random sections as and when the mood takes me 🙂

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    1. We have all done it – walked the wrong way up a canal or gone right when we should have gone left. Worse still have the compass the wrong way round.
      It probably will take you a few years if you keep going the wrong way.
      The bus can be used for quite a lot of the canal stretches to get you back to your van.

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        1. Yes, but it is not impossible to follow the wrong point, mixing up the red and black needles and in fact walking in the completely opposite direction. I know that sounds complicated but I’ve done it.

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  4. Lovely once again Eunice. I always enjoy our canal walks when in UK, though I am wondering if it will ever happen again. We often said we’d like to do the Leeds Liverpool Canal in it’s entirety over several visits, but it’s never happened, though we’ve done quite a few sections. Thanks for sharing & I’ve enjoyed walking with you. Take care, stay safe & hugs from down under.

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  5. I’ve done a few sections of the Leeds/Liverpool myself, mainly when I was with my partner and we cycled rather than walked, but we ended up giving up as whenever we had the opportunity to do another section the weather wasn’t good 😦

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  6. It was a really nice walk even though I did go the wrong way 🙂 I was surprised at all that surface weed though, it was quite thick in places too. My local canal has big patches of it but that’s to be expected as the canal has been disused for many years.

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  7. Oh, what a smashing set of images. This is somewhere that was/is on my list of places to stop off if I ever get the Coast by Campervan trip restarted . . . You’ve made it look very inviting. x

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  8. All the sections of the Lancaster canal which I’ve done so far have all been very pretty and Guy’s Thatched Hamlet is a lovely quirky place to stop for a while on a nice day – I got some great photos round there last year. I don’t know if you like car boot sales but if you do there’s a big one during summer about three miles along the lane from Guy’s – if you ever manage to get down that way on a Sunday maybe you could tie in a visit to both places 🙂

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