Sunday, 22 June 2014

Back to Boating with Odin on Just "Sickle"

(Boat Sickle - posted by Alan)
Very retrospective post for Sat 21st to Sun 22nd Jun 2014

Leaving Blisworth tunnel - I had gone through on my own this time.
With "Chalice" now back at base, we were ready to start boating with "Sickle" on her own again.  This would be our first serious attempt to do so since Odin was so seriously ill, but he was improving all the time, and only by trying it would we find out if there were any likely problems.

"Southern Cross" & "Bideford" at rest.
Fortunately all went very smoothly.  We have made a folding board with a non-slip surface, that can be used to create a step about half way down into "Sickle", (it rests across from the side bed to the shelf that supports the range), and using this "Odin" does not have to do the massive leaps he did before he had massive amounts of abdominal surgery.  The arrangement works well, and there is even just space to stow the folded board beside te coal box with not too much inconvenience.  (It is very difficult to find space for large solid items in the back cabin, but the folding arrangement makes it practicable).

Far too much water at Buckby locks again.
Actually we had a thoroughly excellent trip and really enjoyed being back to "Sickle" boating without needing "Chalice" as a a support boat.

I approach Braunston tunnel - Cath wsalked Odin over the top.
One final thing we have come to realise though!  With Cath's retirement we thought we could be far more flexible about when we did our boating, being no longer restricted to weekends and school holidays.  However "positioning" trips like this one, where there is no viable public transport near to either start or end point, are very hard to achieve without the use of both of our cars.  Unfortunately our son Michael now uses one of them on every school working day, so we are reluctantly resigned that this kind of trip can still only really be achieved at weekends.

Into Braunston tunnel on my own again.

Sharing the descent of Braunston locks

Stoke Bruerne to Braunston
Miles: 20.5, Locks:13

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