Sunday, October 23, 2005

Marlow to Reading avoiding the big black clouds.

See my route on a Google Map

The weather forecast for today was not very good, but I did not want to leave Sirius in Marlow, so time to press on! Melanie said she would give me a hand which was great, as it's always more fun with someone else around.

We had a couple of interesting moments, the first of which was when Melanie tried pushing the from of Sirius away from the lock edge, and almost forgot to jump on! I.e. she almost went swimming ;-)

The next "moment" was when we were going through Marsh Lock (near Henley-on-Thames), there is alway a crowd of spectators at this lock, and once again I managed to fumble throwing the rope over the bollard!

We made great time from Henley to Reading, 2 hours and 10 minutes, which is the quickest yet, I guess because previously I've had more waiting around at locks etc.

Click on the image to enlarge it
Click on the image to enlarge it
Click on the image to enlarge it
Click on the image to enlarge it

Click on the image to enlarge it
Click on the image to enlarge it

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Maidenhead to Marlow with Jeni, Rupert, Jenny, Melanie and Alex.

Well, I have left Sirius in Maidenhead for too long, due to being very busy at work etc etc. This weekend was time to move her on, ( A letter from the Environment Agency reminded me ;-) )

Jeni, Rupert, Jenny, Alex and Melanie all came along to help move Sirius. After we had all arrived, we tried to start the engine, and, nothing...

After a little bit of tinkering around and remembering what I had learnt on my boat maintenance course earlier in the year, I checked the water trap to find a good amount of water and diesel bug slime! After bleeding that off, with a bit of a choak and splutter she started.
Click on the image to enlarge itWe did a quick (ok slow) motor past the SpinVox offices, and then turned around and headed up to Boulters Lock (first photo below). The two plastic boats infront of us decided to hog most of the landing stage, so we just had the first 6 foot of Sirius's 70' moored and the rest of her was stuck out into the river.

We waited what seemed like forever for the front boat to sort out the lock, in the end it turned out they guy obviously didn't know what he was doing, as he was trying to open the lock to empty it, with the sluice gates still open at the top. (for those that don't know, this is impossible on an electric lock, and shouldn't be done on any lock anyway!)
Click on the image to enlarge itAfter passing through Cookham, we stopped just outside Bourne End and moored up to have lunch at the Bounty Inn, Jeni and Rupert cycled off back to their car to meet another friend for a walk.
Click on the image to enlarge itMelanie and Jenny spent a while at the front of the boat chatting away while Alex and I did the real work ;-) i.e. steering and making cups of tea.. thanks for all the tea Alex!
Click on the image to enlarge itFor any of you who have seen the new movie Serenity I spotted this Narrowboat as we were coming up to Marlow.