Tuesday, 15 May 2018

It should have been an easy day - but somehow it wasn't, (again!)

(With both boats - posted by Alan)

Setting off from our overnight mooring in Fenny Stratford
I have gone for more or less the same title again!

Below Stoke Hammond lock.
We are not doing very well, or at least not doing very well at being able to achieve timings we might have in the past with an easier boat.  I am reluctantly starting to think we need to adjust any estimates we make in the future to be considerably more pessimistic.

Three Locks
Unlike yesterday we were started by a reasonable time, but we still ended up finishing unrealistically late.  We are eventually managing to get to where we really need to be on any given day, but the days are proving to be long ones.

"Ajax", which we failed to purchase has got very much dowdier since.
Some of where the lost time is going is obvious, and not all of it is "boating time".  With hindsight we spent longer shopping in Leighton Buzzard than we should have done, and also too long over what we had planned to be a quick meal.

River class butty "Yeo" is much improved already by a new owner.
Boating-wise we had some obvious hold ups as well, including one thorough grounding, where it took quite a while to get "unstuck".  We also ended up wedged between lock gates when trying to run breasted up, because of debris behind one of the gates that was preventing it fully opening, (somewhat daftly, I thought they would just fit - I was wrong!).

Horton Lock
To end by being a bit more upbeat, it was a delightfully sunny day, and the dredging recently carried out by CRT in the pounds both below and above Grove Church lock has made passage with a deep dtaughted boat considerably easier than it previously was.

Between Ivinghoe locks

Swan insisted on locking 7 cygnets through with our boats

I was informed of swans, and gates not fully opening.

We almost went in, but stuck hard like this.

They seemed unperturbed about getting squashed by boats.

Waited for gates to open, and off they went - it appeared planned!

Cath led for the very final part

Fenny Stratford to Ivinghoe
Miles per boat: 14.1, Miles both boats: 28.2, Locks:12
Total Trip Miles: 82.9, Locks: 20

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