Friday, 3 April 2015

Chester Bound

We stayed a day longer in the marina than we had planned, due to the high winds that had been forecast. It turned out to be a good decision. We had our winter neighbours round for a farewell curry on Wednesday evening, and then Thursday morning we set off for Norton Junction. The day was as forecast, overcast but with very little wind. We passed Crick Marina where the annual boat show is held. We won't be going this year, as we are moving further northwards. It wouldn't be the same for us either as this year there will be large hole where Hudson Boatbuilders usually had their boats. Beyond the marina was Crick Tunnel. A boat was just exiting, and I could see through to the far end that it was clear. What I could not see was that it was dripping, virtually all the way through. Obviously last time we passed it was at the end of the summer and so was fairly dry, this time the end of winter and I got a soaking. The crew I should add were inside the boat, so remained nice and dry. Emerging from the tunnel we were surprised to see the sun had come out. This had not been forecast and the day just got better. Shortly after the tunnel is Watford Locks. This is a staircase locks, so we checked in with the duty lock keeper and were instructed to pass through the first lock, then hold whilst boats coming up passed us. There were four to wait for. This seems to be a pattern for us as we were also held at Foxton in this way. Still it was an opportunity for a cuppa and a toasted hot cross bun.

                                             Held in the winding hole below the top lock.

Once through the locks it was not much further to Norton Junction. We passed the Watford Gap Services, and began to move further away from the M1 and all the noise that it brings. We passed numerous fields now full of lambs and as we turned the corner towards the junction with the Grand Union Canal Main Line, we saw a long line of moored boats. Fortunately there was one gap and it was just big enough.

                                      Moored in a line of boats at Norton Junction 

Later during our afternoon walk we saw even more boats moored up beyond the junction so it looks like we found our spot just in time. It was always going to be busy here over the Easter weekend and a large number of boats have passed us heading towards the locks. Some of these have been the old historic boats on their way to Foxton for an Easter weekend event. The museum there has been refurbished and is due for a grand reopening. We will stay here till Monday at least with Sunday lunch at the New Inn, Buckby already booked.

                                                    An Easter Lamb. Happy Easter.

Totals 7 Miles 7 Locks 1 Tunnel


  1. Just been catching up on your blog, your journey seems to consist of LOTS of eating out 😀. Thanks for the lovely curry. We are currently moored by bridge 27. Much easier to get in this time. Have fun.

  2. Our excuse for all the eating out is that we want to support canal side hostelries. There just seems to be a lot of them. Good to hear the dredging has worked and you brought the good weather out with you. Have a great week.