Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Who would have thought a car is the best way to exercise...  

Well not me previously, I used to use my luxury company car to go the two hundred yards each way to the corner shop!  But having had a pleasant if grey trip up through the Stockton wide locks, we walked the three miles back to get the van drove to Napton on the Hill and walked about another three miles back to LJ. Honestly, if we didn't have the bongo to move I may well have not ventured out at all that day. Then two days later we walked the whole way from Napton back to Braunston having found a new hidey hole for Snoop.

It was a leisurely first part of our journey heading towards Braunston for our rendezvous with Pip on Monday, ambling up the three Calcut locks only disturbed/annoyed by another lock nicker. For any non canal boaty types what that means is that another boater traveling towards you has filled or emptied the lock in their favour even though you were on your way towards it and it was set ready for you As we were going up, if the perpetrator of this heinous crime had waited four or five minutes we would have filled the lock with us in it, motored out and they would have taken our place. Instead they had to fill the lock, enter it, empty it with them descending and we could motor in. So rather than one cycle of filling and emptying a lock it had to be filled twice so about 6000 cubic feet of water wasted. This was the third time this has happened in a week, every time by a silver haired male solo boater! If you're in that much of a hurry find a new hobbby!!  Never mind I set Deb on him, don't think hell forget that in a hurry.

Only a few locks and we are into quite a routine with only using one side

Hmm not my cupa tea, lovely big front deck hidden behind a metal wall

Although the locks and bridges are wide there aren't too many places to moor something this big

From biggest to smallest proper boat we've seen

Don't know where all this mud came from! - All the babies are ready to fly

Once through the junction at Wigrams turn the canal became predictably more busy. It was Friday after all so quite a few hire boats ending their holiday and I must say they have all been slowing down nicely for moored boats. We found a pleasant mooring twixt Napton and Braunston for the night and as it was nice and gusty put the wind gen up to try and top the batteries up a little.  During our stroll (8 miles ish) to where we had parked the van we saw jogging woman still jogging, star gazing man now sun gazing and walkie man sadly not walking cos he's got the flu. Nothing much seems to have changed in the last six months. I guess I should have been surprised to see walkie man here after all we left each other a few miles outside Birmingham neither of us knowing what direction we were going to go (at that time we were looking at heading towards north Wales) but I kinda 'felt' he would be here and I spotted his boat in amongst all the others from a good few hundred yards away. Spooky.

But not as spooky as a video I was trying to take whilst we were out walking. Nothing exciting I just wanted a quick video of the drying Autumn leaves and when ever I started the video of the leaves on the tow path the camera froze, completely crashed, I had to take the battery out and it wasn't just once I tried at least four times.  But when I took a photo and even a test video of deb it all worked fine  :- O  That's spooky! Something didn't want to be video'd.

You can take a photo but NO VIDEOS! 


  1. Hi James and Debbie
    The boat you saw was featured in Canal Boat last month and they refered to it as a Stealth Boat. I believe the owners had a similar narrow boat before but wanted more room.
    Nb Autumn Myst

    1. Hi Bob,

      had a quick look at the build price... could nearly have five Lois Janes for that price!!


  2. When you get to Norton Junction you'll be very near Free Spirit - wish we were there.

    1. Hi Allison

      Hope you're both well. We're not too good with junctions,we think we have a plan then a last minute decision in Braunston see's us heading back towards Hinckley - now how many junctions and route variables between here and the Ashby??