Sunday, 14 December 2014

More Marina Life

Saturday was a glorious day. Crisp and bright, just the weather for walk into Crick to refresh the supply cupboard. On peering out of the porthole I could see that it must have got fairly cold overnight as the picture shows.

In case it is not clear the ice, fortunately is the water in the marina and not on the inside of the glass. As I set off for Crick the ground underfoot and the canal were both frozen, but the warmth from the sun soon meant I was removing gloves and undoing my jacket. I had wrapped up a bit too much.

The sky remained crystal clear all day and into the night which bode well for the observing of the Geminids meteor shower which was due to reach its maximum at 0200. I went outside at 2300 with Oscar to have a peak and we spent a chilly 15 minutes watching the shooting stars, roughly one a minute. The area around the marina is quite dark so it is good for stargazing, even with the seasonal light pollution.

The above photos were taken on an iPhone within moments of each other but with different exposure settings.

Finally an update on the progress of the dehumidifier. So far it has taken about ten pints of water out of the air on the boat. So it is definitely doing a good job. Today, Sunday, the Christmas decorations are going up. I won't however be competing with some of the more established marina inhabitants.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Marina Life

It has been a while since our last post so here is a run through of what we have been doing. Since replacing our chimney with the stainless steel double skinned one, purchased from The Little Chimney Company, I am pleased to say that we have no more rusty residue leaking onto our roof and the tar residue has been reduced substantially.


About three weeks ago we took a trip back to Welford Junction as the mooring there has a nice straight edge to it. This was so we could touch up the blacking (bitumen coating) on the the hull sides, covering some of the battle scars that occurred during our maiden voyage from Tamworth. In the end it was easier to apply the coating with a roller, so each side was fully treated and the boat looks splendid once again.

We then returned to the marina for a short spell prior to my attendance on a river canal recue engine maintenance course and our planned trip to Market Harborough. 
The course was run over two days at Alvechurch Marina. It was very informative and I had plenty of opportunity to take their Beta Marine engine apart before playing on mine. Our first oil change and service is due in about 30 engine running hours, and I feel fairly confident in performing this task now.

We had booked a berth at Union Wharf in Market Harborough where we were to meet friends on 10/12. We set off in bright sunshine on 3/12 however prior to reaching Welford, our planned first stop, we had received a call meaning the trip had to be cancelled due to a family emergency back home. Hopefully we can reschedule Market Harborough for sometime in February. 
The following day I returned the boat to Yelvertoft singlehandedly, due being deserted by the crew, who had returned to Essex. During our very short trip we had encountered the Canal and River Trust dredging teams near to bridge 28. It is good to see the work being done, and it certainly needs it in places, but one of our favoured mooring spots now looks like a battlefield.

Back in the marina Oscar and I have settled into the routine of getting up slightly later each day, followed by brunch and then a brisk walk. I have also had a couple of projects to do, the main being dealing with condensation. This has not been too bad but if left it could cause problems in the future. We have resolved this by the purchase of a small dehumidifier. It is amazing how much water it sucks out of the air. The model we opted for is the Meaco DD8L. This is recommended for boat use and is fairly compact which is good news on a narrowboat.

As Christmas is approaching I have started to think about putting up the decorations. My advent calendar has been up since the 1st, each smaller box contains a caramel chocolate.

So after some rummaging through the Christmas decorations bag Oscar decided to get in on the act.

Finally, last week we heard the sad news that our boatbuilder, Steve Hudson had passed away suddenly. This was a big shock as I had only spoken with him a couple of weeks earlier. We had got to know Steve well over the past couple of years during the build of our boat. He was a genuinely decent man who will be missed.

That's all for now, so Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Yelvertoft, bridge 22

Weekly update - after spending a few days at Welford junction we returned on 31/10 to Yelvertoft marina. We are now booked in here for the winter although we will be taking regular excursions out. Friday was an admin and shopping day, so we rejoined civilisation in Daventry for a few hours. Saturday dawned and the preparations for the Halloween party were well under way. We only had a couple of hours to source suitable attire. I was most disappointed that Asda had sold out of their inflatable wings, still always next year. The evening was well attended and we had a great time, even winning a raffle prize. It was also good to make some new acquaintances who will be our neighbours for the next few months.
Sunday was a day of rest, but only after helping to clear up the previous nights entertainment. We departed the marina on Tuesday in bright sunshine and headed north, a total distance of one mile. This was to be our mooring for the next few days. It has most things we need, quite, secluded, line of sight to the sky satellite, plenty of walks and close enough to the village if we really need it.

Just few picitures of our garden in the sunshine. Today I received an email from the Little Chimney Company telling us that our new chimney is ready. This was good news as I was expecting it to take seven weeks to be ready. It is made from stainless steel so will not rust, and should therefore reduce the amount of rust and tar leaking onto our roof. This will require a trip back to Tamworth to collect it. We have planned to do this on Friday when we return to the marina for the weekend. The trip took us about 3 weeks in the boat, but will take about 30 minutes by car. Oscar is also in for a surprise as we have booked him into a vet we used up there for his one year booster vaccination. That's all for now.

Sunday, 26 October 2014


Weekly update - We only spent a day moored in the Foxton zone, preferring the quite rural areas rather than the busy tourist spots. It is funny sitting in the boat listening to what people say as they walk past. "Oh look they've got a chimney and there is smoke coming out" and similar things. 
We departed on Wednesday and travelled about 1 1/2 miles before stopping for the day. 
On Thursday during our daily walk we ended up in Foxton village. We found the Black Horse PH and as it was lunchtime decided to try the cuisine. They had a very good choice on the menu and specials board. Another plus is they are dog friendly. Oscar is settling into the routine at pubs well, knowing that if he behaves he will be given treats. Foxton is a lovely rural village with some large expensive looking homes. We were told that a farm shop is currently being built close to,the canal so that should be good for supplies when it's finished.

We had a lazy day on Friday and then on Saturday we set off for Welford. The trip had a few interesting moments. Due to the high winds some small trees had been blown down and in two places had partially blocked the canal. On one occasion we had to resort to using the pole to push us past an obstruction. Once through Husband Bosworth tunnel we arrived at North Kilworth Wharf. Here we topped up the water tank and also filled with diesel. We only pay the full rate of duty on the diesel we use for propulsion which I have assessed to be 20%. The remainder is cheaper as it is used for domestic stuff like heating, battery charging etc.
At Welford junction we turned left and travelled the 2 miles along the Welford arm for the first time. There is just one lock prior to the wharf which was set in our favour. At the end of the arm is a winding hole where we turned. We had some shopping to do and I also lit the stove. An hour later we returned to the junction and turned left and moored a couple of hundred yards along on the mooring rings. Soon after we arrived we were joined by at least six other boats, so lots of neighbours tonight.

Today was a maintenance day. We have a tarry/rusty residue seeping from between the chimney and the chimney collar. This has made a mess on the roof which now needs to be cleaned. We have tried using WD40, as this was recommended, with limited success. When we get back to Yelvertoft we will have to obtain something better. The second job of the day was dealing with an increasing loss of coolant from the engine. This entailed cleaning and drying the bilge first then running the engine until the leak showed its self. This required some close inspection of various joints in a tight engine bay. Not easy unless you slim and flexible which i am not. An added complication is the necessity to lay across a hot engine.

                                        Not much room in which to work

                         At one point I was upside down to reach the deepest area

Whilst I had the engine bay opened up like this I thought it would be prudent to check all the hose clips  and was pleased to find that it was only the one that was leaking that was lose. This included the hoses to our Hurricane diesel heater which provides us with programmable hot water and central heating if and when required. Again not much room is available for inspection so this is one benefit of camera phones which can be positioned in the small space to obtain a photo of the item needing inspection. By doing this I have been able to confirm that the Hurricane as only been running for 83 hours. We don't need to service this until it has done 1000 hours so some way off yet.

     The fitters must have rubber arms to connect all that pipe work together in this space

We will stay put for a couple of days, making an intermediate stop on the way back to Yelvertoft. We aim to be there on Friday as there is a Halloween party on Saturday which we are attending. By late afternoon all the other boats on the mooring had departed, so now we are all alone. It is now dark (17.30) outside due to the clocks going back. I for one will be happy if this is stopped next year as I prefer the lighter evenings.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Stormy at Foxton

We arrived at Foxton Locks yesterday afternoon and have moored in 'the Foxton mooring zone'. This area is I believe strictly time controlled, due to it being a popular tourist attraction. The area we are in restricts us to two days, and we could only stay a max of 14 days in the whole zone in any one month. After securing the boat for the impending arrival of hurricane Gonzalo, we went for a walk descending the lock flight. At the bottom is the junction where we carried on walking in the direction of Leicester. The wind started to pick up, especially when we reached open countryside and the clouds were begining to darken. The decision was made to return to the boat before we got a soaking. Most afternoons now the stove is lit, so we are nice and toasty by the evening. 
Today we went for Tuesday lunch at the Foxton Locks Inn. This is a very dog friendly pub and even has free treats for dogs when the owners have lunch. 

We have not yet decided whether to spend a further full day here or to depart tomorrow. We shall have to check the weather reports as I don't fancy moving with the winds gusting as much as they are currently.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Windy in Welford

Weekly update - Having spent 13 days moored in Yelvertoft it was time to move on. It was only a short hop to bridge 19 and the water point where we had a fill up. This seems to take anything between half an hour to 45 minutes. Oscar is usually off the boat during this time and not much escapes his attention, especially a dripping tap.

             Oscar testing the water quality

I should state that during our stay near Yelvertoft we visited the Knightley Arms P.H. for our Sunday lunch. I can say without doubt it was the best pub meal that we have had. Once the water tank was filled it was onwards towards a regular mooring spot near bridge 28. Although this is a nice south facing spot we only stayed one day.
Welford junction was our next port of call. There is straight stretch of canal with mooring rings just prior to the junction. We arrived here on the Friday and planned on staying the weekend. The mooring slowly filled and one boat in particular caught my attention. I went and spoke with the occupants and confirmed my initial thoughts. It was Ian and Irene from Free Spirit whose blog can be viewed in my blog list. It is great meeting fellow bloggers especially experienced ones who can give us advice about our new lifestyle. Free Spirit is our second blogger meeting, having met Seyella, also in my blog list a couple of weeks ago.
The weather on Saturday was a bit hit and miss with the rain, however it was really mild. Today we woke to clear blue sky and bright sunshine. The wind however was fairly blustery. Being Sunday it was pub lunch day, so we walked the couple of miles into Welford for lunch at the Wharf Inn. We found our usual table free and Oscar was remembered from last time. Following a visit to the village shop we returned to the boat for an afternoon of relaxing.
Our plan for the next week is to travel back to Foxton and stay there a while. This means an earlyish start tomorrow and the deployment of the tunnel light. This will however be weather dependant. Whatever happens, if the forecast is to be believed, then we don't want to be moving on Tuesday.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

A few maintenance jobs

We have stayed put since Friday, moored close to the entrance of Yelvertoft marina. The weather has taken a turn for the worst with some quite heavy rain, and a blustery wind blowing. Inside the boat however with the stove lit it is warm and cosy. 
Prior to the arrival of the rain I bought a hat for our chimney. This is designed to just balance on the top, and a good gust of wind I suspect, would deposit it in the canal. Currently I have it clamped with a G clamp, but today I took a trip into Rugby and purchased some self tapping screws which should make a more permanent solution.
Yesterday I spent doing a few jobs in the boat. The main one was balancing our radiators so that the heat output is mainly concentrated in the living area and the bathroom, with slightly less in the bedroom and rear room. I have also been reading up on battery maintenance and it can be a minefield. It is however important if you want to get the maximum life out of your batteries, as they can be expensive. Therefore, the engine was run for nearly 8 hours yesterday whilst the travelpower generator, and mastervolt inverter/charger performed what is called an equalisation charge. Fortunately this only has to be done every so often.
One of the benefits of having the stove lit is that you can cook on it, so today sitting on the stove is my tea, beef and ale stew. It certainly smells nice bubbling away in the pot. I will let you know in my next post how it turned out.

Tomorrow we are intending to move as we need water soon and will also fill up with diesel. I have found out speaking to some neighbouring boaters, that there is an unofficial winding hole by bridge 22 so we do not need to go as far as we thought. This move will be subject to the weather.

Friday, 3 October 2014

Bridge 18 Yelvertoft

Weekly update - On Monday we departed Foxton on a general return journey. We stopped again at North Kilworth and then on Tuesday I took a trip by road to Market Harborough. This appears to be an attractive small town with decent shops and we will be visiting it by boat later in the year. On Wednesday we moved again stopping overnight near a previous mooring spot at bridge 28. Unusually for us we moved again on Thursday this time passing Yelvertoft marina before winding (turning) at Cracks Hill winding hole. We did this to beat the bad weather that is forecast to arrive by the weekend. We plan on staying here for the week as family are possibly visiting us next weekend. I have however made a basic error as after this visit we intend on heading back down the Watford Locks to Long Buckby and then continue south on the Grand Union Canal towards the Northampton Arm. I am however facing the wrong way and the nearest winding hole is 3 miles away so a 6 mile round trip which is a days cruising for us. We will only have two weeks or so to explore as the Watford Locks are to be closed at the beginning of November as part the Canal and River Trust winter stoppages for maintenance. We need to be back on the summit level before then for our mooring in Yelvertoft Marina.
Today, Friday 3/10 we walked into Crick and found that the Red Lion pub has a nice atmosphere and that on the first Sunday of each month they have a pie night. The selection looked very good so i am sure we will visit them again. There is also a well stocked mini co-op so it is good to know we have good pubs and shops all with in walking distance for the winter.

                          View back towards bridge 18 and the marina entrance.

That's it for now as we get ready to batten down the hatches for the wind and rain that is forecast. Tomorrow we have birthday to celebrate. Oscar is one year old and we have got him a nice chewy bone for his present.

Totals 14 Miles 1 Tunnel

Wednesday, 24 September 2014


Well this morning after five days it was time to move on. We had exhausted our water supply, so we now know that we can go six days between fill ups without having to be careful with our usage. We set off for North Kilworth Wharf to obtain water, and we also took the opportunity for a pump out. After concluding our business we continued heading roughly north east, and soon entered Bosworth Tunnel. This is a relatively short tunnel at just over 1000 yards and took us 12 minutes. Once through the tunnel it was only five miles or so to the famous Foxton flight of locks. There is a winding hole just before the flight, which was handy because we do not intend descending the locks until December when we head for Market Harborough. We had spotted a nice, sunny, south facing mooring on the way to Foxton, and it was still vacant on our return. This was another first for us using mooring pins instead of the chains. I just hope I have banged them in well, or we may float off during the night.
Anyway now some pictures of our garden for the next few days.

Finally the solar panel got a polish ready for tomorrow because if the weather reports are to be believed, we should get quite a bit of power produced over the next few days with the sun on the panel all day.

Totals 8 Miles 1 Tunnel

Friday, 19 September 2014

Bridge 43 nr North Kilworth

Well after posting last night two boats turned up where we were moored so we were not alone for long.
Stayed in bed this morning as we could hear it raining outside. This stopped however after we got up so a quick breakfast then a short walk past the junction towards North Kilworth. We noted some mooring places but as we got to bridge 43 there was a secluded single spot available. A quick check with the compass showed that there were no trees in the line of sight to the sky satellite. We returned to the boat and brought her forward the half mile or so to what will be recorded in our route guide as a good spot.

                  Signpost left to Foxton,right to Welford and return to Norton Junction.

                              Oscar being walked to our next location.

                        Looking forward towards bridge and North Kilworth.

           View from above. No neighbours for the next few days unless on a small boat.

After securing the boat and lining up the sky dish it was lunchtime. Both of us are surprised how quickly the time seems pass. In the afternoon we walk upto the boat yard at North Kilworth to see what the facilities are like. We will need some of their services in few days time. Once back at the boat I put the chimney up just in case the stove needs to go on this evening. Oscar went to sleep on the sofa.

Totals 1/2 Mile

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Welford Junction

Set off this morning at 10 am with grey sky and a chilly breeze. The intention was to continue north towards Welford Junction. This is where a short one and a half mile stretch of canal leaves the Leicester arm and terminates at a wharf in the village of Welford. Just prior to the terminus is a single lock. We moored before the junction as it is our intention to continue our journey north for a while and there where some handy mooring rings where we were stopping.

                                         Welford Junction ahead in the gloom.

                                 Our mooring - As you can see all alone for now.

The trip took took two hours and on route we noted some very nice secluded moorings that we shall use in the future. After lunch we walked upto the junction and then down the Welford Arm to the terminus and the pub. The Wharf Inn had been recommended so we rested there a while before walking up to the village shop.
On our return Oscar saw another dog on the opposite bank of the canal and this dog was playing with a frisbee. Now Oscar has one of these and he decided to play as well only between him and the other dog was about 20 feet of canal. The obvious happened whilst running full speed and unable to stop Oscar ended up 7 or 8 feet from the bank in the canal. His head disappeared and when it bobbed up again he swam for the bank. He looked like a drown rat when first pulled out.

                    A dripping wet Oscar.

Still at least we now know if he falls in that he can swim ok. Fortunately the sun was now shining and our walk back was in the warm giving him time to dry before we got home.

Totals 5 Miles

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Leicester line GU nr bridge 28

This morning was very misty when Oscar got up for his breakfast, so I am told. By the time I awoke the mist had cleared over the marina but it still looked grey and overcast, not the fine weather promised in the forecast. Still at least we could now see the exit onto the canal. After moving the car to the long stay area and refilling the water tank we departed the marina at 11 am. We had been in the marina since Friday and although it is very nice we definitely prefer to be out on the cut.
An hour and half later we had travelled the 3 miles to our mooring spot. Today is the busiest day we have seen on the canal. We had at least 6 boats opposing us and someone told us we were the fifteenth to pass them that day.
As we moored the sun came out and so we had an enjoyable afternoon chatting to other boaters on the towpath. Oscar was also able to try out his sun hat which had arrived in the post a few days ago.

                                                Oscar wearing his new hat.

                                             A couple of photos of our mooring.

We will probably stay here for a few days before we continue our journey north towards the Welford arm.

Monday, 8 September 2014


We set off this morning at 7.45 am. You could tell the weather was going to be good as the sky was crystal clear blue and mist appeared to be rising from the canal.

                                                The start of a glorious day.

We approached the Watford flight of locks and were first in the queue for going up. After checking in with the lock keeper we waited until the two boats descending the flight had finished. Then it was our turn. Each lock had two set of colour coded paddles, red and white. You open the red ones first then the white which balances the water in the side ponds, so the lockie told us.

                                  Entry point to the first lock of the Watford flight.

                                  Waiting for boats in the staircase to exit.

                   Halfway up the red paddles being opened with lockie looking on.

                                             Top of the flight looking back.

Having ascended the locks it was not long before we entered Crick tunnel. We were nearly through thinking we had got away without a drenching and then it happened near the northern end of the tunnel. Oscar had sat just inside the boat rather than in 'his spot' but he seemed ok with it. Once clear of the tunnel we passed the marina famous for the annual boat show and pressed on towards Yelvertoft.
We needed a pump out and also took the opportunity to refuel. We had used 56 litres of diesel on our journey from Tamworth. After re acquainting ourselves with the staff at Yelvertoft marina we continued heading north on what is going to be our home water for the winter. It is very tranquil a little overgrown and shallow in a lot of places.

                                 View from side hatch of night time mooring.

We are planning to stay put for a few days maybe only moving for a refill of water when needed.

Totals 10 Miles 7 Locks 1 Tunnel

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Norton Junction (day two)

We stayed put today for our day of rest. It started by us laying in till 10 am. After breakfast we decided to walk to Whilton Marina as they have a chandlers there. The walk took us down the Grand Union mainline passing the 7 locks of the Buckby flight. At the marina we found the chandlers well stocked. On the counter by the till was a large bucket of hose connectors with a note saying 'carry a spare'. Clearly I am not the only one to misplace this thing, so I bought two. I have also decided to try and limit my visits to chandlers in general as they are like toy shops for grown ups, and I always seem to spend more than I intended before entering. After brief refreshments of an ice lolly each we returned towards Long Buckby. At the top of the flight is the pub we visited yesterday, so a return visit today for lunch seemed a good idea. The day had warmed up so on return to the boat the afternoon was spent lazing about in the sun.
Tomorrow we plan to set off early to tackle the staircase locks at the Watford flight, which happen to be very close to Watford Gap services on the M1, and Crick tunnel, which I believe leaks so raincoats at the ready.

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Norton Junction

In Yesterday's post I forgot to mention that at the point we entered Braunston we left the Oxford canal and joined the Grand Union Canal. This is a wide canal and means that all the locks will now be double locks with heavy gates and paddles. 
I was also minding my own business with a side hatch open and nearly lost my left ear to this........

We left our mooring at 7 am and used the water point by the gongoozlers rest. For those not in the know this is a floating cafe next to Braunston marina. A gongoozler is someone who likes to watch activity on the canals.
It was here that we found that someone ( me ) had lost/misplaced our hose connector. The lady at the gongoozlers rest was kind enough to lend us hers so we bought some local honey in exchange. We arrived at the bottom lock of the Braunston flight at 8 am and there was another boat just about to start so we doubled up with them. This not only saves water but also shares the workload. It turned out the other boat was also a Hudson.

We carried on up the flight knowing that up ahead was Braunston tunnel. This tunnel is two way traffic for narrowboats and is 2042 yards long so well over a mile. It took us about 30 minutes to get through and we passed 3 other boats on the way.

The Francis light worked well in the tunnel and we even switched on the port and starboard navigation lights to check they were working. Once out of the tunnel it was only a short hop to our mooring location at Norton Junction. This is where the Leicester arm of the Grand Union Canal leaves the mainline which goes onto London.

                   Left turn for Leicester and Market Harborough straight on for London

This afternoon we took Oscar for a walk to a boatyard to try and obtain a hose connector but no luck. So we found The New Inn P.H. at Long Buckby and had a drink instead. Now back on board for a relaxing evening. Sky dish aligned and curry for tea. Tomorrow we stay put as we don't want to over do it and on Monday we have a lock staircase to deal with but that is another story.

Totals 4 Miles 6 Locks 1 Tunnel

Friday, 5 September 2014


Set off this morning at 7 am and at 8 we were passing through Newbold Tunnel. This is our first on Achernar and it is only a short one at 250 yds long. Still it was long enough to give the Francis searchlight it's initial use. After the tunnel is a water point which was clear so we stopped to refill the tank. Setting off again was another first this time it was using the travel power which is a 240 volt generator. This allowed us to use the washing machine. We continued on passing through Rugby before arriving at Hillmorton Locks. There are three pairs of locks here and we were going uphill. At the first lock (the bottom lock) we were greeted by some volunteer lock keepers who did all the work leaving us only to deal with the middle and top locks. After leaving Hillmorton you quickly pass from the urban sprawl of Rugby into nice open country. We took note of some good mooring spots for future use.

               Hillmorton locks in the grey gloom with Rugby radio masts in background.

As we continued on towards Braunston the sun emerged and it became quite warm. Oscar has now laid claim to 'His Spot' on the rear deck and he made good use of it warming himself in the suns rays.

We arrived at Braunston at 1 pm the whole run including locks taking 6 hours. We found a mooring space just beyond The Boathouse P.H. It was mutually decided that we would lunch at the pub and have dinner on board this evening as being Friday the pub will probably be busy tonight. We are only a couple of hundred yards from the start of the Braunston flight which will tackle tomorrow. We also have a very long tunnel to deal with.

Totals 14 Miles 3 Locks 1 Tunnel

Thursday, 4 September 2014


We stayed on our mooring today and after conducting some maintenance and cleaning we walked into Brinklow. This is a small village about a mile walk from the canal the main focal point being the church.

There is a small deli a post office and three pubs so this could be a good winter mooring spot for the future. On entry to the village is the village sign and a new war memorial which is due to be unveiled later this month.

On return to the boat it was lunchtime and then later I went foraging for towpath apples and blackberries. These were made into a crumble which will tonight's pudding.

Tomorrow we head for Braunston which is about 15 miles and 3 locks away so we hope to be underway by 7 or 7.30 at the latest.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

All Oak Wood

Only a short cruise today for a couple of hours. We arrived at a good rural mooring spot,next to All Oak Wood,near the village of Brinklow at 12.30 pm. After a light lunch we took Oscar for a walk to explore the surroundings. On return to the boat,some more boats had arrived and the mooring was beginning to look full. Still it is a very pleasant area and we intend to stay put tomorrow. The boat is performing well,but we have suffered the inevitable first scratches to the hull blacking now.

Just a couple of pictures of our mooring at All Oak Wood. Tomorrow we will take a walk into Brinklow for a look.

Totals 4 Miles

Tuesday, 2 September 2014


Today we set off at a more leisurely 10 am. We past through Nuneaton without stopping and continued on towards Marston Junction. This is the junction of the Coventry canal and the Ashby canal. We were planning on an excursion up the Ashby before continuing our journey south. This week however there is a festival on this canal so it will likely be busy. We will visit it probably early next year.

                   Ashby canal which is rural to the left and the Coventry canal straight on.

We continued on the Coventry canal now heading towards Hawksbury Junction. This is where the Coventry canal meets the Oxford Canal which we will join. There is a lock at this junction where the rise in level is only a matter of a few inches. The junction was fairly busy with three other boats going our way and two opposing. There is also a nice pub overlooking the junction so plenty of opportunity for onlookers to witness any poor boatmanship.

                    The approach to Hawksbury Junction left turn towards Oxford Canal

                            Waiting our turn to pass through the stop lock.

We had considered stopping near here but the moorings were quite full so we carried on to the next village Ansty. On route we paralleled the M6 and passed under the M69. Old transport versus modern I know which I prefer. On arrival at Ansty sufficiently far away from the motorway we found a mooring and settled in for the afternoon. This evening we went up to the village and visited the Rose and Crown P.H. for a belated birthday meal. It was very busy and we were lucky to get a table but now we have the number we can book next time.
Not sure what the plan is for tomorrow but possibly a shortish cruise to a nice rural spot and a bit of fishing.
Oscar seems to be learning the ropes well and is now quite happy laying down on the rear deck by the steerer.

Totals 11 Miles 1 Lock