These are the adventures of Andy and Sally Rawnsley on their narrowboat "The Puzzler". We have been living on the boat for over nine years now and are still loving it. Our Ulster born Shih Tzu, Shannon, has grown up, and has taken over the boat! After three wonderful years in Ireland, we transported The Puzzler to The Netherlands, and spent a year there. In 2015 we went southwards, to reach the north of France by June. After glorious weather throughout the summer, we arrived in Roanne in late October, and enjoyed our winter in this friendly port. We cruised extensively in France in 2016 and 2017, returning to Roanne each winter.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Belleek to Rosscor 9th - 14th May

We spent several days in Belleek, waiting for the wind to drop, so had time to see everything. Belleek is a border town, with the main part of the town being in Northern Ireland. It is not far from the Atlantic Ocean.

Sally is ready for our bike ride to visit the coast.

Belleek is only six miles from Ballyshannon harbour at Mall Quay, which used to be a thriving harbour, many years ago. Both sailing and steam ships came from Europe and the Americas. Timber, coal, coke, iron, slate, wine and china clay were imported while wool, leather and salted fish were exported during the great famine. Emigrants left from here for the New World.

This estuary leads out into Donegal Bay on the Atlantic Ocean. Andy is enjoying the sea air.
We cycled there along a really pretty back lane. We faced the wind on the way there, so it was an easy ride back. We passed this typical Irish bungalow, painted white, with a large lawn, but no flowerbeds. This seems to be the norm.

Belleek is at the end of navigation on the River Erne. The river bridge here is the border between North and South Ireland and is on the Donegal Corridor, along the River Erne, as used by the Flying Boats in the Second World War.

Yesterday a cruiser came into the harbour, so Sally asked them what the waves had been like on the Broad Lough. "Not too bad," was the reply. "Waves were only one metre." ONLY one metre? We do not plan to move just yet!

Belleek is well known for the Belleek Pottery, which is just north of the town bridge. We took the tour round the works and found it very interesting.

On Friday we moved round to the ex-hire base, which is nearer to the main road. Having bought a 20 litre plastic container, Andy was able to go to the garage for diesel. He was lent another container and also a wheelbarrow, which made it easier. This is the most economical way of getting diesel over here in Ireland.

We are still waiting for suitable weather to return to the other end of the Broad Lough, but decided to go nearer to the Lough itself. It was a lovely afternoon, with a following wind.

We sailed about three miles up River Erne to moor at Rosscor jetty, which is a delightful mooring not too far from the main lough. It is in an inlet off the main river, so is quite sheltered.

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