Wednesday, 10 August 2022

Nottingham

Here I am Rune

Distance 11.4 miles 

Total 4701 Locks  313 Tunnels

Running total mileage 7,015.2 miles

We managed to hit the target of getting to Nottingham today, not sure how long we’ll stay but since we aren’t on the visitor moorings the limit is 14 days although we wont be staying anywhere near that long.

Curious kind of day today, we seem to have passed a volunteer lock keeper who was clearly having a bit of a bad day at Stoke Lock. We had followed a cruiser along towards the lock and as we approached another cruiser came out saying, “Just in time, the lock is open and ready for you”. The cruiser ahead of us steered into the lock and we were about 50yards behind and following him in….except that as he entered the lock, the green light turned red and the gates began to close. I sounded the horn several times to no avail so had to take the option of mooring on the lock mooring. I walked up to see if the lock was being operated by a boater, but no there was a volunteer lock keeper on duty. I mentioned to him that he’d shut us out of the lock but all he could say was that he hadn’t seen us, fair enough. So after the 20 minute wait while he filled and then re-emptied the lock we then steered in followed immediately behind by another cruiser. There was a bit of a swirling current in the lock and, whilst I managed to get the stern line around the riser, getting the front in was for some reason a bit more problematic, so I was concentrating on that. What I wasn’t aware of until an almighty crash behind us was that as soon as we had entered the lock, the lockie had started shutting the bottom gates, the crash was as the cruiser behind us was trapped between the closing gates!  I kind of feel some relief that we’d had the gates shut on us since it is preferable to being trapped between the closing gates.

All in all it took us about 45 minutes to get through Stoke Lock but since we had plenty of time it didn’t really make that much difference to the outcome for the day.

So we now have a few days in which to check out Nottingham, OH is going to the Record Office to do some research and I’ll probably go for a swim, or do a bit of ice skating, or both.

 

Tuesday, 9 August 2022

Gunthorpe

Here I am Rune

Distance 4.8 miles 

Total 4700 Locks  313 Tunnels

Running total mileage 7,003.8 miles

Although the target for today was Stoke Lock, we finished at Gunthorpe Lock after we’d emptied the Elsans. It gives u a little more to do tomorrow to get into Nottingham, but, disasters aside, it’s not too onerous.

Today’s cruise was a simply ideal trip, almost no wind, sunny, no dramas and generally very pleasant, it’s what narrowboat cruising is all about! I hope that tomorrow will be pretty similar. The only, very small, fly in the ointment, is that I am getting a bit of a leak on the stern gland, nothing too dramatic at the moment, merely irritating. I’ve tightened it up a few times and it stops the drip for a very short while before it resumes. I’m starting to wonder whether packing within the gland is stating to perish. If it doesn’t seriously deteriorate further I’ll take it apart when we have the boat on the slipway next Spring and re-pack it.

Tomorrow’s target it to get moored in Nottingham.   

 

Monday, 8 August 2022

Hazelford Lock

Here I am Rune

Distance 8.5 miles 

Total 4698 Locks  313 Tunnels

Running total mileage 6,999 miles

Since we managed to get onto the pontoon on Saturday morning, we decided to remain in Newark until today (Monday). We also had the benefit of a generous moorer in front of us allowing us to double up with her on the electric supply, so we hardly had to run the engine at all over the weekend.  Had a brief wander around Newark last night, it’s a quirky sort of town with lots of little hidden back alleys. Was also reflecting on the fact that as a child, some 60 years or so ago, I would have passed over Newark bridge en route to relatives in Yorkshire since Newark was one of the notable hold-up in those days (along with Baldock and Grantham).

We got here to Hazelford Lock about quarter to two and stopped for lunch, also to see what moorings were available above the lock. There are moorings but they aren’t really an improvement on where we currently are since both locations we are mooring against a high wall. Tomorrow the target will be Stoke Lock.