Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Moored for the busy weekend!

So here we are at All Oaks, and we decided to stay here for the weekend as things have started to get a bit busy now with the kids off.
It has been hot and humid here and Del has been going out with his glider as he has the choice of three fields.

The weather has been great for gliding and it only takes a couple of catapult launches before he is up and away for a hour or so.. He's a pic from when the grass was a bit greener..

Al has been right into her books again and been trying to keep cool in the cratch and in the saloon.
On Friday late afternoon it rained, you can't believe we are so pleased to have some rain..
Derwent6 gets a wash, the canals get water and freshened up a bit, and the grass turns a little greener..
We have a busy next couple of weeks so a little bit of planning is involved and we will be taking a mini break from the blog..  We will catch up with you all with some pictures shortly..

Friday, July 20, 2018

Hawkesbury to All Oaks

We didn't have a good night last night as we had over eaten at the Greyhound.
So we made the most of it by getting up early and pushing Derwent6 over to top up with water.

We set off from the water point at 7.15am and crept past the row of moored boats at Hawkesbury.

We just took our time cruising towards Rugby (back on our winter patch) with some interesting things to look at on the way.

We then got to Ansty where it is always a bit tight, but we never met anything.

Once out the other side of the village we started to notice how over grown things had got in all this sunshine.
Del wasn't moaning as it makes things very pretty and also a bit tricky.
The canal then follows the railway for a mile.
After passing a few moored boats we got to the swingbridge at Roses narrowboats and a guy kindly opened it for us.
We then got to All Oaks and were lucky enough to get a mooring, and Tooty was off in a flash to investigate.

We managed to set up telly and met a few people we knew from wintering around here.
We then heard from Tony on n.b Timewarp that just round the bend there was a problem with bags in the canal. It turned out there was also a strong smell of cannabis, and sure enough when we had a look bags loads of the stuff had been dumped in the canal, roots and all..

The council were there but CaRT had to be called to remove them from the canal. A CaRT guy came to our boat to let us know what was happening.
He had to retrieve the bags using a long pole and hook and the dispose of them.

We tried to chill for the rest of the day but it was difficult when you hear a bang and you have someone else's paint on you gunwales "Just push off Moron" was Del response.
Keep your eye open for a light blue boat, he can't steer.. How many more scars will we take here?

Back to the Oxford Canal

So we left our mooring at Hartshill and made our way up to towards Nuneaton. The weather was a bit cooler and it was nice cruising weather.

We had no drama's and it even felt like we had plenty of water in the canal. This is our favourite telegraph pole on the cut..
The last time we went through Nuneaton they had cleaned it up a bit but this time things had taken another dip.
New houses have been put up either side of the canal and it might have attracted the canal to be a refuse tip.
We saw the settee and chairs, with boxes and plastics just chucked in, and of course the shopping trolley's were back..

You get through and the graffiti gets less on the bridges and you feel the need to clean the prop as you know its covered in plastic bags.
We then got to the Ashby canal entrance and we caught up with three other boats, don't know how?
We followed these into Hawkesbury Junction and had to wait in the narrow just before the turn..
It was busy, its always busy here, its one of the busiest locks on the system.
The boat in front of us went onto the water point and we spotted one mooring free just after the lock moorings going down. Derwent6 fitted perfectly, no telly, but we didn't care about that.
We chilled in the sunshine and we even had a few very light showers late in the afternoon so it was pointless doing any polishing..
In the evening we booked a table at the Greyhound pub and had a few beers followed by BBQ ribs and chips..
Yep we pigged out.......

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Atherstone Flight

Tooty woke us up at 6.00am and we made a cup of tea before we got ready to set off. We left at 6.45am and crept past the boats on our way to the services. We are always happy with Derwent6 and its cocooned engine which keeps the noise levels down.
At the services we were able to top up with water, get rid of our rubbish and also do a manual pump out.
This meant we were heavier at the bow, lighter at the stern so we were ready for any shallow water problems..
We hit the first lock at Atherstone just before 8.00am and they were all against us, but it was only time.

It was nice because it was a lovely temperature to be doing the flight. We found we had a boat in front of us and another one pushed off as we came out of a lock, but we chilled in the sunshine as it began to break through.

At the last three locks help was at hand with the volunteers getting locks ready. We did hit one pound which was very low and we sat on the bottom till the lock was emptied in front of us and we could get over the cill.
At the top it appeared to be so busy as three boats were waiting to come down. We were right, as we tried to get a mooring for Atherstone town centre but all the moorings were taken between the two bridges. We managed to get in after the bridge and was amazed Derwent6 didn't have any shallow problems.
Al then walked to Aldi and did a small shop to top things up for a few more days.
We then carried on to find a middle of nowhere spot.
It was slowly clouding over and again was a nice temperature in the stronger winds. We felt like we had done so much today with the locks, shopping and stopping at the services, we even had a cat nap in the afternoon.
Black clouds came over, and fly screens were put away and the roof cleared for a down pour, but it never happened. In fact on the horizon we could see sunshine..
  We can't believe we are getting excited about RAIN! What are we British like.....


The Final Weekend

Moored up for the weekend is a lovely feeling. Again it was hot and I mean hot, because you can't do anything in this heat, it makes you feel so lethargic. The great thing is that brasses haven't needed doing for at least six weeks, but Derwent6 is covered in dust from the towpaths.
Del has been getting up early just to wipe the roof and sides down, but if you're thinking of painting, forget it!
But we're not moaning, we love it! chairs in the shade, chairs in the sun, but most of all BBQ at the ready and beers chilled in the fridge.

Of course this weekend is final weekend, with the tennis and of course the World Cup, and its a well done to France for winning it.
The forecast shows a little needed rain on the way so moving tomorrow before it gets here. We are doing the Atherstone flight of eleven locks and we are hearing some of the pounds are very low on water.. Early start for us then!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Cooler on to Polesworth

We were expecting some rain last night and all the fly screens had to be taken out and the glass fitted in. It was so hot we couldn't sleep very well so at the crack of dawn we were up and on the move.. It was cloudy and cool and we soon got to Wittington and crept through trying to not wake anyone, even all the birds were asleep.
Then we met a guy who was standing on his roof and jet washing his boat!.. "I've never washed Derwent6" I told him "I just wipe it down when the dew is on the roof" I'm sure he didn't believe us.
We had to take things slowly as it was a bit shallow in places due to it being so dry.
We got to Hopwas and met a couple of boats there and had to use reverse and got a bag caught round the propeller.

We managed to get out of the way and let them pass, but it wasn't easy keeping Derwent6 out of the trees.. Del then got it off.
It was onwards to Frazley Junction where it was lined with boats, but this just added a bit of time (and we have plenty of that)
After two and a half hours we got to Glascote locks which are two single locks to raise you fourteen feet..

A boat was coming out as we got there, and when we went in another boat was coming down the lock in front of us, which made things a lot easier. At the top Del filled with water and Al walked down to the Co-Op for a top up.
Things went perfect for us as Del slowly went down to the bridge where Al was waiting with her shopping bags.
It was then on to Tamworth where you pass everyone's back gardens.
It had been very quiet as far as movement, unless we were just in a long queue of boats strung out.

We headed on up to Polesworth where again there were shallow spots, and here we passed the steam boat..
 You could see the fields of corn were nearly ready, but it just needs another week before the combine harvesters are out, it's early July, Wow!..
  We got to our normal place at bridge 50 where we like, in the middle of nowhere.
Well it was from football to tennis for us.. Two fantastic semi final matches took place, and took up the rest of the day..