By Norfolk Broads.Org
An excellent site that includes a tide table relevant to your holiday dates. Enter your holiday start date, and number of days then click on calculate.
A minor collision and another of 2 boats going through Wroxham bridge. One gets it right but the other does not.
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I believe all modern hire craft have single lever control and are normally operated as the diagram below. Some have a separate button to pull out for neutral. The boat yard official will show you how to start the engine and how to use the control lever.
Pull out the lever from neutral and push slightly forward to retain neutral and allow throttle increase whilst remaining stationary.
Your reverse gear is your brake and it takes longer to stop when you are travelling with the current. You can seldom bring the boat to a complete standstill depending on current and wind conditions. You may need to use short bursts of reverse or forward adjusting steering as necessary to remain static whilst waiting for an obstruction to move. If available a bow thruster is also a help.
In general overtaking a cruiser on the right/starboard could be a recipe for disaster. Unlike roads the rivers do not have lane markings and the riverbanks are not in a straight line but constantly changing shape.
The helm/steering is normally on the left/port side and boats do not usually have mirrors. With many boats it is impossible to see behind nor down the right/starboard side so the helmsman of the boat you are overtaking may have no idea that you are there and you risk being forced into the riverbank, running aground, hitting overhanging trees or a solid object such as a navigation post. You could also be responsible for forcing the boat you are overtaking into a head on collision with oncoming traffic.
When you have passed a boat leave a good distance making sure that you are well clear before moving back and do so at a very gradual/slight angle.
Look behind you now and again in case someone is trying to pass you.
Fuel deposit charges vary but I often pay £125 and use approx £110 of fuel in a week. The boat normally holds more than enough fuel for a 2 week holiday. It is usual to pick up the boat with a full tank and it is refilled on your return to the boatyard and the cost taken from the fuel deposit. In most cases I find I get a bit of cash back.
I have provided a basic map of the Norfolk Broads on this site but you may wish to purchase a large more detailed one. These are normally available at boat yards or you may wish to order one from your holiday provider in advance. Most places where the river branches there are signposts but they normally only name the more prominent places like Norwich, Yarmouth, Potter Heigham, Beccles etc.
When you travel across Breydon Water you need to keep between the red and the green posts. The majority of green posts have white tips. When approaching or leaving Yarmouth pass the yellow post before turning.
Yarmouth. Due to extreme currents and 2 bridges, it's important to arrive at Yarmouth at the recommended time so check your tide table. The ideal time to arrive at Yarmouth is at slack water approx 1 1/4 Hours after low water and recommended you keep within 1 hour before low water and 2 hours after. It's also quite safe to pass through at high water slack as well, as long as there is sufficient clearance under the bridges for the boat in question. The downside of that is punching the tide in both directions, instead of having it with you, as is the case at low water slack. I wouldn't recommend this for craft approaching from the Southern Broads across Breydon Water as if the bridge clearance is insufficient you will have to turn around and make the return journey. This is even more important if it is anywhere near approaching dark. There are Yarmouth Bridge clearance gauges on the River Waveney and The River Yare just before crossing Breydon Water but you need to take into consideration that if the tide is coming in there will be less clearance by the time you reach Yarmouth.
If you are travelling from the Northern Broads you could arrive early, moor up and wait till it is safe to continue. Yarmouth has a rise and fall of in excess of 6 ft so you need to leave plenty of slack on the ropes if you decide to stay. Yarmouth Yacht Station Tel: 01493 842794 or 07766398238.
The closest moorings to Yarmouth going North is just beyond The Stracey Arms wind pump located on the left hand side of the river approx 9 miles away so bear this in mind if it is anywhere nearing dark. There are numerous moorings which are chargeable for staying overnight.
Please click here for more detailed advice on crossing Breydon Water and cruising through Yarmouth.
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