Your boat should be available at 2 pm on the start day, sometimes we can complete the checks and cleaning required earlier than this and you are welcome to call during the morning to check progress. Handover procedures need to be commenced as soon as possible after 2pm as the handover/tuition takes approximately two hours (most of that time you will be travelling through the locks). Should you have some experience this would not take as long but if you are likely to arrive after 2.30pm it would be very helpful if you could give us a call. Late arrival may result in a delay in the handover. Once you have loaded, we will take you through the boat and explain everything, we will then drive with you through at least one lock until you feel confident.
There is free parking in the private car park at the base and the gates are locked at night, although all vehicles and contents are left entirely at the owner’s risk.
Directions to Country Craft Narrowboats
The nearest train station is Abergavenny where taxis to the base at Llangynidr are available and usually await the trains at the station.
From Brecon take the A40 towards Abergavenny, just after Bwlch turn right onto the B4560 towards Llangynidr. Proceed over the river bridge then at the T junction turn right onto the B4558 signposted to Talybont on Usk. Continue on this road passing the ‘Coach & Horses’ on the left, over the canal following the road to the left. Take the next turn left into a small, uphill lane and immediately on your left is the entrance to Country Craft Narrowboats.
From Abergavenny take the A40 towards Brecon, through Crickhowell and approximately 5 miles out of Crickhowell turn left onto the B4560 towards Llangynidr. Proceed over the river bridge then at the T junction turn right onto the B4558 signposted to Talybont on Usk. Continue on this road passing the ‘Coach & Horses’ on the left, over the canal following the road to the left. Take the next turn left into a small, uphill lane and immediately on your left is the entrance to Country Craft Narrowboats. If you go over the canal bridge you have gone too far.
Shopping & supplies
You will need to pick up supplies prior to arrival on your start day, as once you arrive in Llangynidr there are no shopping facilities except for a village shop, although they do stock most basic supplies and a small selection of homemade ready meals.
Some of our customers book an online grocery delivery to arrive at our base on the day of departure - booking a delivery between 9-11am is advisable to avoid delays for you should they arrive late. We will accept the delivery on your behalf if you advise us beforehand but will need to accept the order as delivered – unless you advise otherwise.
Clothing & footwear
Bring plenty of warm clothes as it can sometimes be surprisingly cool on the canal in the evenings and early morning. There will be one set of wet weather gear on board for the skipper, but wet weather gear for the crew is essential. Strong footwear with a good grip is needed for safety.
Supplied from adult to young baby sizes.
We don’t advise that you drink the water on board without boiling it first, it is mains water but if it stands for long the chlorine dissipates. If you require cold drinks you can either boil the water and leave it to cool, bring bottled water or bring a larger container to refill with the mains water available from the taps along the canal bank.
The fridge is an under-counter type with a small freezer compartment at the top and it will be switched on before you arrive so it will already be at a cool temperature.
On board there is a gas oven with grill and a gas hob, there are no microwave ovens on board.
Power supply & appliance charging
There are USB, 12v car type and 230v standard UK household (3 pin plugs) sockets on board. The 230v system can be used for appliances less than 500w, the wattage rating is usually marked on the appliance. It is more convenient to use the USB/12v car chargers as they do not require using the on board inverter and are less of a drain on the boats batteries. We do not recommend that laptops, tablets etc. are used while plugged into any of the sockets due to possible power variations which could damage your equipment, instead charge appliances while the boat is running and then unplug before use.
If you need to bring any medical equipment which requires power, please ensure that you have a 12volt adapter (either USB or 12volt car type socket) for your appliance as the 230volt system cannot be used for continuous power. Most CPAP and BiPAP machines can be run on 12v power with the correct adapter/lead.
The television reception is often patchy along the canal due to the mountains surrounding the canal; however, the TV is also a DVD player so bring films if you wish and there are HDMI sockets on the televisions.
Free Wi-Fi is not usually available along the canal; however, the mobile signal is generally good.
A maximum of 2 two bikes can be stored on the front deck of the boat, however, this will restrict your access to the front of the boat. Bikes cannot be stored or placed on the roof due to the low bridges and insurance restrictions. If you wanted to bring bikes and decide when you arrive then, should you decide not to take them aboard, we can store them for you.
Insurance is always complicated and we do understand customers worry about driving a boat for the first time but most people are novices and the boats can take the odd knock or two and we don’t charge for minor damage.
Insurance for the boat itself and any third party damage is already included in the price. Provided instructions and procedures have been followed, the boat has not been misused and the speed of travel has been appropriate then, in the unlikely event of any damage, the maximum you would be asked to pay is £50 per item/ocurrance towards the insurance excess. The excess is only charged if it was your fault, broken window, badly damaged boat, lost items etc. We do not provide any cancellation, personal or personal effects insurance.
There is no close season on the canal, an environment agency rod licence is required, and no live bait is to be kept inside the boats. There is often the odd trout (coming in from the river) roach, carp, rudd, perch, chub, eels and the usual gudgeon etc. The best baits on the canal are bread and maggots. Lightweight gear, small hooks, weights and floats are needed as there are few bigger fish. Maggots are best purchased before your journey as they are not available locally. The closest place to purchase them is:
Cwmbran Angling/Fishing 39 Richmond Rd, Cwmbran, Gwent NP44 1EQ Phone:01633 868890.
A maximum of 2 portable craft can be brought but must be towed (tightly secured to the rear of the boat to avoid the danger of being caught in the propeller) not stored or placed on the roof or elsewhere on the boat due to safety restrictions. All portable craft must be removed and put on the bank when negotiating locks and no liability can be accepted for damage to portable craft, however caused.