Information about the 3 navigable sections of the 260km long river Lot


The Lot is one of the longest canalised rivers in France. Navigation extended over a distance of no less than 260km from the Garonne at Nicole (near Aiguillon) to the village of Livinhac, a few kilometres from the industrial centre of Decazeville. Opencast mines here produced coal for steel works and other heavy industry throughout south-west France. The intense traffic thus generated was the reason for improving the navigation originally devel­oped by the early 19th century, and a series of new locks and weirs were built from 1830 onwards. At the same time the lock-cuts built to bypass the river’s extravagant meanders at Luzech, Cajarc, Montbrun and Capdenac reduced the length of the water­way by 13km.

Like all the other river navigations in south-west France, the Lot was abandoned following the decline in commercial traffic due to railway competition. The river was removed from the list of navigable waterways in 1926.

Its revival as a cruising waterway has been one of the most spectacular devel­opments on French waterways, starting in 1985. A first 64 km length of the river was restored in 1990, from Luzech to Crégols. This section, centred on the town of Cahors, was a great success as a cruising holiday destination, despite some difficulties due to the river’s capricious flow regime, and also attracted many land-based visitors to the otherwise neglected river. The three départements through which the waterway runs accordingly agreed to seek funding for complete restoration, and the remarkably ambitious overall project was approved by the French Government in 1993, with an overall budget then estimated at €120m, although that included road improvements and other works.

Activity then concentrated on the département of Lot et Garonne, which has completed restoration almost throughout its territory. Technical difficulties have delayed restoration of the lock at Saint-Vite, which could be completed by 2017, but Fumel dam is a much greater challenge, and although a lock has been designed, no solution has yet been found for disposal of the contaminated sediments to be excavated to build the lock and dig.Lot region map

In 2006, work started on restoration of the river in the third département, Aveyron, and a 15 km length has been open to navigation in 2010, from Bouillac up to Port d’Agrès.

The Lot département, under pressure from the local councils, also started restoration of the section around Puy-l’Évêque, and has completed a length of 21 km with 5 locks. Thus in 2010 four separate sections of the river are navigable: the 76 km length in the département of Lot-et-Garonne, from the junction with the Garonne to down­stream of Saint-Vite lock and weir, the 21 km length around Puy-l’Évêque, the 75 km length centred on Cahors and the 15 km length in Aveyron. These are dealt with in separate sub-sections, but the distance table is given as a whole, in view of the projected restoration over the total projected distance of 266km from Nicole to Port d’Agrès. (This village is in fact 6km beyond the former head of commercial navig­ation.)

N.B. Giving the complete distance table has meant making assumptions on the engineering solutions to be adopted at the four meander cut-offs, at Luzech, Cajarc, Montbrun and Capdenac. There is no doubt about the latter, where the tunnel and locks are in good condition, but the other three cut-offs have been either infilled (Luzech) or converted to hydropower head­race channels. The route given in the distance table corresponds to solutions on alignments close to those of the cut-offs built in the mid-19th century, which are expected to be found preferable on environmental grounds to reusing the abandoned loops, where very substantial works would be required.

History – The Lot is the longest tributary river in France, 481 km. From the Middle Ages flat-bottomed gabarres traded between Entraygues and the Garonne, a distance of 297 km. This was the only outlet for the Quercy region, and in the late 17th century Colbert ordered improvements to navigation. Canalisation became necessary when the open-cast coal mines in Decazeville started supplying coal to fuel the Industrial Revolution, from 1840. About 75 weirs (chaussées) and locks were built over the 270 km up to Decazeville. Navigation continued to provide good service to clients after the first railway was opened from Montauban to Capdenac in 1858. With the coal traffic growing fast, the railways were not considered a viable solution and it was decided to upgrade the navigation. This is when canals were built to bypass the river’s extravagant meanders at Luzech, Cajarc, Montbrun and Capdenac, reducing the length of the waterway by 13km. The reprieve for river navigation was short-lived, since the railway line along the valley from Lot et Garonne to Cahors was opened in 1869. The decline was inevitable and the river was abandoned in 1926. An association founded by Christian Bernad in 1971 campaigned for restoration, and the author’s first consultancy assignment was to assess the feasibility of developing waterway tourism on the river. This led to the first 64km length being restored and opened in 1990.

Key Waterway Dimensions

  • Max Beam: 5.00m
  • Max Height: 4.40m
  • Max Draught: 1.20m

Local Waterway Links

First section, Nicole to Fumel (Saint-Vite)

The first navigable section of the Lot extends over 75 km from Nicole lock to downstream of Saint-Vite dam. Nicole lock gives access from the Garonne to a 2.4km canal (the canalet) which bypasses the Lot/Garonne confluence. The channel thereafter follows the river bed throughout this section, which includes two deep locks built by the national electricity corporation (EdF) beside its hydro­power plants at Castelmoron and Villeneuve-sur-Lot.

The waterway offers pleasant landscapes throughout, with gently undulating relief bordering the wide valley, and many towns and villages of interest. The Lot valley in this section is noted for its intensive irrigated agriculture and fruit orchards.

The dams built by EdF in the 1950s created pools which have long been used for water sports, hence the impression that this is a long-established waterway. Le Temple-sur-Lot is a rowing centre of international repute and the Villeneuve pool has a length available for power-boating and water-skiing.

It should be stressed that since the river Lot is not a state-operated waterway navigation is at the risk and peril of users, who are responsible for checking available headroom and depths according to the stage of the river (see below under regulations).


Locks – There are 7 locks in this section. The five restored locks offer navigable dimensions of 30m by 5.00m. These limits also apply at the two deep locks at Castelmoron and Villeneuve, despite their slightly larger dimensions of 32.50 by 5.25m. Nicole lock is operated by the Lot-et-Garonne waterway staff, depending on the arrangements made for the transit on the Garonne through to the Baïse. Aiguillon, Clairac, Lustrac and La Rougette locks are operated automatically by a smart card to be obtained from waterway staff and inserted into the terminal beside each lock. Locks may be operated from 09:00 to 19:00 (18:00 in October). Castelmoron and Villeneuve locks are fully mechanised and operated by waterway staff. Conventional signalling is in place at these locks.

Draught – The channel and all structures, especially lock sills, are designed in principle for an effective draught of 1.20m, but as a precaution the maximum authorised draught is limited to 1.00m.

Headroom – The maximum authorised air draught (the maximum height of the boat’s superstructure above the water level, non ballasted) is 4.40m, corresponding to the minimum headroom above the highest navigable water level.

Regulations – Speed must not exceed 12km/h in mid-river, and must be reduced to 6km/h in the canalet from Nicole to Aiguillon and within 25m of the banks. Care must be taken not to cause wash liable to damage the banks. Passenger boats have priority at the locks. Delicate passages are all in principle marked by buoys, red on the right-bank side of the channel and green on the left-bank side. Navigation is not authorised above a certain stage of the river, which is announced and indicated by signs placed above and below the two working locks upstream of Villeneuve.

Authority – Conseil Général de Lot et Garonne, Direction des Infrastructures, Transports et Logement, Service Routes et Navigation, Côteau de Romas, 47130 Port Sainte-Marie

Click to enlarge

Route description, from the Garonne east towards the source

First section, Nicole to Albas
PK 0.0    Confluence with river Garonne
PK 0.1    Nicole lock (lift 1.30m), navigation enters small canal (‘le Canalet’) bypassing confluence, footbridge, village r/b

The écluse is quite deep (4m) but the pilots will take ropes, etc. so your crew can stay aboard. There is a pontoon immediately through the lock, but it is adjacent to a busy, noisy road and a railway line – and there are no shops at Nicole itself. Whilst it might make a temporary, catch-your-breath, stop it is advisable to keep travelling up the canalet. This 3km by-pass channel is quite narrow, with fallen branches at its edges. However, you are unlikely to meet anything coming in the opposite direction ; access down onto it through Aiguillon lock is appropriately controlled.

PK 2.2    Railway bridge (Toulouse-Bordeaux main line)
PK 2.4    Aiguillon bridge (Pont Napoléon, D813), town on l/b
PK 2.5    Footbridge (access to beach)

Pontoon before the écluse to drop crew and magnetic card off, to operate it, then a tight channel by the large (derelict) mill building into the 2m lock. The water flow into the lock is quite fierce. Mooring pontoon above the lock for 2 boats, water and electricity (free). Beach by the weir.

PK 2.6    Aiguillon lock (r/b) and weir (lift 2.00m), navigation enters river Lot
PK 9.7    Camp-site and beach, r/b
PK 9.9    Clairac lock (l/b) and weir (lift 2.70m)

Pontoon below the écluse for crew drop-off. This 3m écluse is one of the trickiest we’ve encountered. Crew has to be ‘up top’ to insert the card, but there is only a short section of lock-side for them to use and no convenient bollard to take advantage of for their bow line. The rest of the lock becomes unavailable when the lock gates open (for you to enter) and because elsewhere the ancient mill building comes right up to the lock edge. Beyond that there is no way to exit the lock-side and walk around the mill, other than by ignoring ‘keep off’ signs and climbing over sluice gate machinery and fences. Which is what we ended up doing. And then the water enters the écluse very strongly indeed at first. There are hanging ropes, but quite how one is supposed to use them, we know not – they are not fixed at the bottom, so one can neither loop a securing line around them nor easily use them around one’s own cleats and bitts.
The channel beyond the écluse leads to Clairac bridge, go through and turn back through the central span into the River Lot above the barrage, good quayside moorings on the north bank. Free water and electricity. Showers below the (disused) capitainerie, access using the écluse magnetic card. An attractive little town. Big sandy beach below the barrage. Walk into the town by turning left above the quayside, past an historic, pretty, public spring-water source. Excellent modest (pizza, etc.) restaurant in the main old town square. Carrefour supermarket (fuel) just over the bridge.

PK 10.2    Clairac quay r/b with moorings, water, electricity, shower, pump-out, village centre 300m
PK 10.3    Clairac bridge
PK 12.7    D/s tip of island, channel in l/b arm
PK 13.0    U/s tip of island
PK 13.3    Overhead power line
PK 14.8    Piers of former railway bridge
PK 15.5    Suspension bridge (Roussanes)
PK 17.0    Mooring l/b

A long floating pontoon (no facilities, but a peaceful rural situation) for the Musée du Pruneau, which we have visited twice – it may not sound it, but it’s fascinating.

PK 18.5    Granges-sur-Lot historic quay l/b, small village, shops
PK 19.0    Mooring l/b

A great pontoon (floating, piles) above the village, with water and electricity (free). Very nice spot, lovely walk along the river to the attractive little village (good small supermarket and boulangerie). By the village quayside (now left high and dry) is a flight of steps leading up to a garden door, halfway up which are two flood marks. A very long way above the current river level.

PK 21.3    Site of former weir (Rivière), disused lock l/b, navigation may be delicate from here to Castelmoron following lowering of this reach
Old écluse and barrage, now submerged, buoyed channel through.
PK 22.0    Castelmoron pontoon moorings r/b at town hall, village offering all shops and facilities

Quayside moorings by the handsome Moorish mairie building and by the impressive concrete bow-string bridge (not everyone will find it as impressively handsome as we do). Free water and electricity. Big sandy beach opposite, pedalos and electric whale-craft in season. Pretty nice town, although the épicerie/supermarket is not well stocked.

PK 22.1    Castelmoron bridge (pre-stressed concrete arch)
PK 22.7    Castelmoron lock r/b (lift 10 m) adjacent to EdF hydropower plant, controlled by lock-keeper
PK 23.2    Hotel-restaurant Plantié, l/b
Floating pontoon (2 boats, no services) at the hotel-restaurant Les Rives du Plantié – pleasant surroundings.
PK 23.5    Port Lalande, harbour basin access under footbridge r/b, moorings, Castelmoron Nautic harbour, night €11.40, fuel (on demand), water, electricity, shower, repairs, wifi

An excellent inland harbour, off the river (although for mooring we prefer the river quayside, just out of view to the right). Fairly new and very well looked after. Safe. Facilities and services include lifting-out, yard storage, maintenance and repair. The capitaine/harbourmaster is English, friendly, helpful and very experienced. Nice surroundings and plaisanciers have use of the swimming pool and laundry in the (quiet, discreet) holiday village adjacent. Good potential overwintering place.

PK 25.2    Le Temple-sur-Lot boating, sailing and water sports centre l/b, moorings for small boats in creek l/b, village with all resources (training site for international rowing teams)

Quayside for two boats, often occupied because this is another excellent place. Free water and electricity. The national sports centre specialises (naturally) in water sports including rowing and kayaking but also a place where basketball and judo teams train and where groups of children try their hand at various activities such as having fun in Optimist dinghies. The small village has a supermarket, boulangerie, bar, restaurant ‘La Commanderie’ and a famous aquatic plants nursery, where Monet got his water lilies from.

PK 26.5    Caillac pontoon r/b

Pontoon alongside the orchard, serving a first-class farm shop, visited by Rick Stein in one of his TV programmes. Very friendly and very good produce including special home-made tarts, a famed local delicacy.

PK 27.3    Fongrave quay r/b, water, electricity, slipway, small village

Timber pontoon for two boats, free water and electricity. Nice little village surrounded by fruit orchards, with a boulangerie-post office-bar-restaurant. Farmer’s market on Thursday evenings in the summer. The mooring is by the town square,  next to a memorable chateau. It’s also in a water ski zone: this implies some occasional rocking from the speedboats’ wake, plus some entertainment. Best not to moor there when the annual village Foire is on – a little too lively.

PK 29.6    Creek l/b
PK 31.4    Overhead power line
PK 32.5    Sainte-Livrade bridge, quays l/b, small town with all shops and services, 300m l/b

Long timber pontoon but no services. A good small town with a big market on Friday mornings. A short walk from the pontoon is France’s biggest (and presumably oldest) plane tree.

PK 35.1    Hauterive, small village r/b

Two very good boat-sized pontoons, no services but a delightful location. The hamlet is pretty enough but has only a small farm shop.

PK 39.1    Casseneuil moorings on quay for 4 boats d/s r/b, water, electricity, village r/b

Two moorings under the willows, free water and electricity. The old part of the village follows the course of the small tributary River Lede that joins the River Lot here. Ancient buildings that lean and hang over the stream.

PK 39.2    Bridge (D217)
PK 41.1    Overhead power line
PK 43.6    Former railway bridge (Pont du Martinet) accommodating a local road
PK 44.9    Campagnac pontoon moorings r/b

Timber pontoon with space for about 4 boats, free water and electricity. Water taps are press button type and do not have threaded spouts. Quiet rural location, a steep walk up to the ‘village’ (10-12 houses and a smart new coiffeur housed in a converted barn) past the little chapel. 5km cycle ride into Villeneuve, along a fairly busy road.

PK 48.0    Former lock (Madame) r/b, navigation over former weir
PK 49.8    Bridge (Pont de Bastérou, Villeneuve ring road)
PK 50.0    Villeneuve-sur-Lot quay r/b, moorings for 10 boats below town hall, water, electricity, slipway
PK 50.1    Bridge (Pont des Cieutat), town centre r/b
PK 50.3    Bridge (Pont de la Libération)
PK 50.6    Former Cajac lock l/b (no difference in level following demolition of weir, narrow channel from here to lock)
PK 51.6    Villeneuve lock (lift 13.00m) r/b, EdF hydropower dam
PK 52.3    Overhead power lines
PK 53.1    Bridge (Pont de Romas, N21, Villeneuve bypass)
PK 59.6    Saint-Sylvestre bridge, quay u/s l/b, Port-de-Penne l/b, 35 berths, night €8, water, electricity, showers, slipway, pump-out, Penne-d’Agenais hilltop village and basilica of Notre-Dame de Peyragude 1500m
PK 67.0    Railway bridge (Boyer), Agen-Périgueux line
PK 68.1    Lustrac lock (lift 1.58m), historic mill

A memorable location – a beautiful restored former mill building, a large chateau and a pretty, small, village (no facilities but there are some at Trentels, a kilometre walk away). Few boats pass the recently restored écluse (magnetic card) and it’s just about possible to moor at the waiting pontoon there for a night, as we did, getting ‘moved on’ later the following morning. As a longer-term alternative there is a good timber pontoon under the trees just downstream from the lock. A place to linger and reflect.

PK 71.7    La Rougette lock (also called Les Ondes) (lift 0.62m), operated by magnetic card
PK 75.0    Current upstream limit of navigation

Pending the projected restoration of Saint-Vite lock, where a small hydropower plant has to be removed, the current limit of River Lot navigation comes after one last kilometre in a fairly narrow buoyed river channel that some might find it difficult to turn around in.

PK 75.7    Saint-Vite lock (lift 2.74m)
PK 76.0    Bridge (D911 Fumel bypass)
PK 76.6    Libos bridge (D102), village r/b
PK 77.6    Disused steel works r/b
PK 78.3    Fumel lock l/b (lift 7.96m) adjacent to Vieille Montagne hydropower plant (lock projected)

Once the restoration of Saint-Vite lock has been completed (by 2017?), it will remain only to build this lock adjacent to the dam at Fumel, but contaminated sediments have proved to be a major obstacle, and there is no idea when the enormous investment may become financially and economically feasible. The lock is projected on the right bank (town) side.

PK 78.6    Fumel bridge, town centre 800m r/b
PK 81.0    Bridge (D911 Fumel bypass)
PK 82.9    Limit of Lot et Garonne and Lot départements r/b
PK 83.5    Disused lock chamber (Fossat) r/b
PK 84.3    Limit of Lot et Garonne and Lot l/b
PK 84.6    Orgueil lock (lift 1.10m) r/b
PK 88.4    Touzac bridge, village 400m l/b
PK 88.7    Touzac lock (lift 3.15m)
PK 93.5    Bridge (Vire-sur-Lot), D58, Duravel 2500m r/b
PK 94.6    La Croze lock (lift 0.85m) l/b
PK 94.7    Railway bridge (La Croze), disused
PK 96.4    Grimard lock (lift 2.27m) l/b
PK 98.3    Puy l’Evêque lock (lift 3.49m) l/b, adjacent to hydropower plant
PK 98.8    Puy-l’Évêque bridge, quay u/s l/b
PK 102.6    Former quay (port de Grézels) l/b
PK 104.5    Compastier lock (lift 1.48m) l/b
PK 106.4    Bridge (Pescadoires), Prayssac 2400m r/b
PK 107.7    Meymes lock (lift 5.01m) l/b, adjacent to  hydropower plant
PK 110.0    Escambous lock (lift 0.24m) l/b
PK 112.5    Floiras lock (lift 3.41m) r/b
PK 113.1    U/s tip of island (d/s boats keep to r/b arm)
PK 114.1    Suspension bridge (Juillac)
PK 117.5    Castelfranc suspension bridge, village r/b
PK 117.9    Castelfranc lock (lift 1.10m) r/b
PK 120.2    Site of former Albas lock l/b (infilled)
PK 120.6    Current upstream limit of navigation

The non-navigable length of the Lot waterway is estimated here to be 7.4 km long, but this is speculation a t this stage. Albas lock (lift 3.70m) adjacent to a hydropower plant, is at PK 120.9, followed by    Albas suspension bridge beside the village. The sensible – but expensive – option for bypassing the Luzech loop and dam is a new 11.30m deep lock at PK 126.6, giving access to a new tunnel; this would be parallel to the tunnel that was dug through the limestone spur as the power plant headrace. The second section starts upstream of Luzech dam.

Second section, Luzech to Larnagol

PK 128.0    Current d/s limit of navigation, overhead power line, Luzech dam and hydropower plant 300m d/s
PK 128.4    Luzech (Port de Caix) r/b, Canalous Plaisance hire base, mooring free, water, slipway, pump-out, Luzech village 800m
PK 129.4    Caïx quay r/b, water sports base
PK 131.3    Caïx castle r/b
PK 131.4    Parnac mooring (no facilities) l/b, village and Cahors wine cellars 500m
PK 134.0    Langle castle r/b, former lock, alternative mooring for Parnac l/b
PK 138.7    Caillac mooring (no facilities) r/b, village and restaurants
PK 139.9    Disused railway viaduct (brick arches), moorings and canoeing base d/s l/b
PK 140.1    Disused lock (Douelle) l/b (earlier canalisation)
PK 140.5    Cessac lock l/b, rise 2.00m, cross-currents d/s
PK 140.6    Quay r/b and Le Boat hire base (restored tobacco drying shed), 15 berths, water, electricity, showers, crane 10t, pump-out
PK 140.7    Douelle pontoon mooring beneath quay l/b, attractive village with shops, restaurants
PK 140.9    Douelle suspension bridge
PK 143.9    Cessac r/b
PK 146.8    Outfall of Mercuès hydropower plant, former lock, r/b
PK 147.8    Mercuès lock l/b at end of long narrow channel, rise 4.20m
PK 147.9    Mercuès mooring r/b, village 500m, château 1200m on hilltop (hotel and restaurant)
PK 150.2    Pradines l/b, water, slipway, shops, restaurant
PK 153.0    Bridge (D820 Cahors bypass)
PK 153.2    Labéraudie lock l/b, rise 0.70m
PK 154.5    Cahors boatyard (Port Saint-Mary) r/b, Chantier Naval du Lot et de la Garonne, free mooring one night, 3 berths, water, electricity, showers, crane 40t, slipway, pump-out, repairs, retaurant, Babou Marine hire base and boat sales
PK 154.6    Bridge (pont des Remparts)
PK 155.6    Valentré lock l/b under the 14th century Pont Valentré, rise 2.75m, Cahors centre 400m r/b
PK 156.2    Railway bridge
PK 156.6    Hôtel de la Chartreuse, restaurant founded on former lock, l/b
PK 156.7    Cahors bridge (Pont Louis-Philippe, or Saint- Georges), D920 main road, town centre r/b
PK 157.2    Entrance to Cahors lock-cut, l/b
PK 157.3    Cahors lock (Moulin de Coty), (rise 1.30m) l/b, automatic, controlled by swipe card on lockside control unit
PK 157.6    Bridge (Pont de Cabessut), submerged former bridge pier just d/s of middle of each arch
PK 158.2    Moorings l/b in front of sports grounds, swimming pool, Cahors town centre 1000m
PK 158.4    Cahors rowing club headquarters r/b
PK 160.8    Lacombe lock, l/b, rise 1.40m
PK 161.7    Laroque-des-Arcs quay in centre of village, shops, restaurant, water point on quay
PK 163.2    Lamagdeleine moorings level with sports ground and campsite, r/b, water, electricity, village with café and restaurant 200m
PK 164.7    Arcambal lock, l/b, in lock-cut, rise 1.35m
PK 165.1    U/s entrance to Arcambal lock-cut, beware of cross-currents, motorway viaduct (A20)
PK 166.1    Moorings for Savanac, r/b, Arcambal, l/b
PK 167.1    Original Galessie lock taken over by hydropower plant, l/b
PK 167.4    Galessie new lock r/b, rise 2.80m
PK 168.7    Railway bridge (Quercyrail tourist line, closed)
PK 171.7    Vers lock r/b, rise 0.25m
PK 171.8    Vers bridge, mooring u/s r/b at campsite, water, electricity, slipway, all shops and restaurants in village, 200m
PK 173.9    Planiol lock l/b, rise 1.40m
PK 176.9    St Géry lock r/b, in lock-cut, rise 3.05m
PK 177.1    Saint-Géry port de plaisance, safe year-round moorings in lock-cut, r/b, mooring free, water, boat repairs, village centre 200m
PK 177.5    U/s entrance to Saint-Géry lock-cut
PK 178.0    Bridge (Saint-Géry)
PK 180.1    Masséries lock l/b (disused, pounds level following raising of St Géry weir, keep between buoys towards right bank)
PK 180.6    Railway bridge
PK 181.9    Island (Île aux chiens), navigation in r/b arm
PK 184.2    Bouziès lock l/b, rise 1.40m
PK 185.1    Bouziès bridge, Hôtel des Falaises, Bateaux Safaraid trip boat, Lot Navigation boat hire and canoeing base, swimming pool, water, pump-out
PK 185.9    Railway bridge
PK 186.4    Ganil lock, l/b, rise 1.50m, navigation continue  in lock-cut
PK 186.7    Confluence of Célé r/b (not visible from lock-cut)
PK 187.3    End of lock-cut, navigation re-enters river, beware of current
PK 189.4    Saint-Cirq lock, l/b, in lock-cut, rise 1.85m
PK 189.9    End of lock-cut, navigation re-enters river, beware of current
PK 190.3    Saint-Cirq-Lapopie bridge, camp-site, free mooring, water, electricity, showers, slipway, pump-out, wifi, famous cliff-top village 1000m up the hill, souvenir shops, art galleries, cafés and restaurants (alternative mooring below lock)
PK 191.7    Old Crégols lock l/b in former lock-cut
PK 192.6    Crégols lock, r/b, village 800m l/b (no services)
PK 193.3    St Martin-Labouval lock l/b, navigation continues in lock-cut
PK 194.0    End of lock-cut, weir and hydro plant r/b
PK 197.1    Bridge (Cénevières)
PK 197.2    Railway bridge (preserved line used by  Quercyrail service, currently withdrawn)
PK 199.4    Cénevières lock l/b, navigation enters short lock-cut
PK 199.8    End of lock-cut
PK 201.5    Former Larnagol bridge, in former lock-cut
PK 202.3    Larnagol bridge, village r/b, current limit of navigation

There is so much of interest in the non-navigable section that we give here the ‘virtual’ route description; this may also be of use to those exploring the River Lot by canoe or bicycle, or even by car.

PK 202.9    Larnagol lock (presumed) l/b side of weir, adjacent to entrance to former lock-cut, used by hydropower plant, bridge
PK 207.2    Site of former Labruyère lock l/b (weir flooded by raising of lower weir)
PK 207.9    Railway bridge (Quercyrail preserved line)
PK 210.8    Former locks used as spillway of Cajarc hydroelectric power plant r/b
PK 211.1    Entrance to presumed new lock-cut r/b
PK 211.2    Cajarc deep lock (rise 9.0m)
PK 211.5    Entrance to Cajarc tunnel, projected length about 200m
PK 211.7    U/s entrance to tunnel, navigation re-enters river 300m u/s of Cajarc hydro dam (head 6m), waterway enters département of Aveyron, l/b
PK 212.8    Cajarc bridge, pontoon moorings u/s r/b, town centre 200m, all shops and services,  Salvagnac-Cajarc village 1000m l/b
PK 215.0    Former Cadrieu lock (chamber apparent l/b)
PK 218.6    Entrance to lock-cut r/b
PK 218.8    Montbrun lock
PK 218.9    End of lock-cut
PK 219.5    Montbrun village r/b
PK 220.3    Montbrun lock r/b (location to be determined)
PK 220.3    Entrance to tunnel
PK 220.6    U/s entrance to tunnel, navigation rejoins river
PK 222.2    D/s tip of island, navigation in l/b arm
PK 222.3    U/s tip of island
PK 222.5    Camboulan lock (rise 1.90m) l/b
PK 224.8    Toirac lock (rise 2.30m) r/b
PK 225.7    Larroque-Toirac bridge, Saint-Pierre-Toirac 1200m l/b
PK 228.5    Frontenac lock (rise 2.93m), r/b adjacent to power plant
PK 232.9    La Madeleine lock (rise 0.78m) r/b
PK 234.0    La Madeleine bridge, restaurant l/b
PK 235.1    Arelles lock (rise 2.0m) l/b adjacent to power plant
PK 236.6    Submerged groyne l/b, keep towards r/b
PK 237.6    Island, navigation in r/b arm
PK 240.5    Capdenac tunnel lock 1 (rise 2.00m), entrance to Capdenac tunnel (length 160m)
PK 240.6    Capdenac tunnel lock 2 (rise 2.00m) in tunnel entrance
PK 240.7    Navigation re-enters river
PK 241.0    Capdenac lock (rise 2.18m) r/b adjacent to power plant
PK 241.2    Capdenac bridge, mooring d/s r/b, restaurant
PK 241.5    Railway bridge (Toulouse-Brive line)
PK 244.3    Assier lock (rise 2.54m) presumed new lock l/b, hydro-power plant r/b
PK 245.9    Overhead power line
PK 247.4    Floirac lock (rise 1.00m) in lock-cut r/b
PK 247.7    End of lock-cut
PK 250.1    Gazeau lock (rise 1.34m) l/b

Aveyron section

PK 250.1    Mooring u/s of Gazeau lock l/b, limit of navigation
PK 251.1    Bouillac bridge, mooring below lock entrance l/b
PK 251.2    Bouillac lock (rise 1.50m) l/b in lock-cut
PK 251.4    End of lock-cut, navigation re-enters river
PK 253.9    La Roque Bouillac village r/b
PK 254.6    Larroque lock (rise 2.30m) in lock-cut l/b
PK 254.8    End of lock-cut, navigation re-enters river
PK 255.0    Bridge (D840)
PK 255.5    Penchot bridge
PK 255.9    Penchot lock (rise 2.30m) l/b, disused factory r/b
PK 257.9    Roquelongue lock (rise 2.30m) in lock-cut l/b
PK 258.2    End of lock-cut, navigation re-enters river
PK 259.1    Livinhac bridge (D21), campsite and moorings u/s r/b, slipway, Livinhac-le-Haut village 600m r/b, Decazeville with all services 4000m l/b (but 120m climb over hill)
PK 259.2    Site of former Livinhac suspension bridge
PK 260.0    Former coal loading quays and limit of navig- ation (Port Bouquiès) l/b
PK 262.7    Marcenac lock (rise approx 5.00m) l/b, adjacent to modern hydropower plant r/b
PK 266.0    Port d’Agrès bridge, limit of navigation, moorings d/s r/b, hotel-restaurant, Flagnac 1200m l/b

self-drive canal boat rental france


Hiring your own cruising boat is an ideal way to explore and experience the pleasures and treasures that the French waterways have to offer. Hire boats come in different sizes, to suit a couple, a family or you and your friends, and your ‘hands on the wheel’ holiday can be arranged from start to finish by any of the reputable companies to be found on

Base locations map – River Lot