Winter Operating Hours

Planning to visit the Scottish canals over winter? Check here for our operating hours and any planned stoppages.

Caledonian Canal

Winter Closure

The canal will be closed to through traffic from 4pm Wednesday 9th January 2019 until 8.30am Monday 8th April 2019.

During this closure, navigation of some sections of the canal will be possible within normal winter operating hours of Monday to Friday 9am – 4pm, with a minimum of 24 hours prior arrangement with the Canal Office in Inverness (T: 01463 725500).

When the canal re-opens to through traffic on Monday 8th April 2019, the canal’s Spring operating hours of 8.30am – 5.30pm 7 days per week will be in effect.

It is possible that there may also be some short closures at specific locations before or after this closure period – these will be noted on this page.

Christmas and New Year arrangements

Vessels wishing to transit sea-to-sea before the Christmas and New Year break MUST enter the canal by 9am on Wednesday 19th December 2018 at the very latest to be sure of transit.

Vessels entering the sea locks for safe haven at Corpach or Seaport Marina MUST arrive by midday on Monday 24th December 2018 at the very latest.

After New Year the canal will re-open to sea-to-sea traffic at 9am on Thursday 3rd January 2019 and will operate on normal winter hours (Monday to Friday, 9am – 4pm) until the closure begins at 4pm on Friday 11th January 2019.


Crinan Canal

From Monday 22nd October 2018 to Monday 24th December 2018

Please give at least 24 hours’ notice of your arrival to avoid delays, 48 hours if the draft of your vessel is greater than 2.1m – call the Canal Office on 01546 603210

Mon-Fri (all structures*): 08.30 – 15:30 (last locking)

Lunch break 12:00-12.30

* During term time, the bridge at Lock 4 will not swing between 08.30 and 09:00

Please note, the last locking of the day must commence 30 minutes prior to close.

Christmas and New Year arrangements 

We are closed over the festive period with the last full day of operations on Monday 24th  December 2018 (08:30 – 15:30) and will reopen on Thursday 3rd January 2019 (08:30 – 15:30). During this closure, special lockings will be available, subject to staff availability, at a cost of £120.00.  Please contact the canal office on 01546 603210 to arrange.

Winter Closure

The canal will also be closed between 12th January and 24th February for essential winter works including installing a mooring facility at Bellanoch Bridge, replacing a number of balance beams, inspecting sluice doors on lock gates, repairs of the dams and other general work.


Forth & Clyde and Union Canals

1st November 2018 to 31st March 2019

  • Monday to Thursday: 8am – 4pm
  • Friday: 8am – 3.30pm
  • Saturday & Sunday: by arrangement 48 hours in advance

Carron Sea Lock and Bowling Basin: 8am-4pm every day (except Christmas and New Year). Auchinstarry Basin and Edinburgh Quay: please check with local office to confirm operational hours.

Please note you must complete your last locking/ bridge movement 30 minutes before closing time above.

Please give at least 48 hours’ notice of your arrival or your plans to make transit along the canal – call us on 07810 794 467. Call this number to arrange passage and check for any updates.


The Falkirk Wheel

1st November 2018 to March 2019

  • Wednesday to Sunday: 11am to 4pm

Please give at least 48 hours’ notice of your arrival or your plans to transit The Falkirk Wheel – call us on 01324 676912. 

Winter maintenance closure:  5th November – 1st December.

During this period there will be no boat trips, but you can still enjoy our visitor centre!  The centre will be open Wednesday – Sunday.

Click here for full details of our Visitor Centre Winter Opening Hours and Boat Trip Times.