Sunday, 29 June 2014

Back to Foxton

Here I am Rune
Distance 5.2 miles
Total 485 Locks 11 Tunnels
Running total mileage 671.4 miles

A return gentle cruise from Market Harborough to Foxton, although with some rather persistent drizzly rain for most of the way. Now we are back in Foxton we’ll remain here until Tuesday when we’ll make our way about a mile or so up the canal to Debdale Wharf Marina for the boat blacking before we can start on our travels again. The engine is now pretty much due for its next oil change but I’ll leave that until the blacking is done and we are back travelling again to make sure that the old oil is well agitated before draining it out (makes sure that all of the sludge is suspended in the oil rather than being left in the sump). All we have to look forward to this week is a couple of days here in Foxton and a couple of days in the Travelodge at Market Harborough whilst the work on the boat is completed.

Friday, 27 June 2014

Market Harborough

Here I am Rune
Distance 4.8 miles
Total 485 Locks 11 Tunnels
Running total mileage 666.2 miles

A gentle cruise from Foxton to Market Harborough today, slightly marred by a pretty heavy downpour of rain, at least we’re not at Glastonbury (which starts today!). There’s plenty of mooring space here at Market Harborough although most of it seems to be on a curve. Did some shopping and on our return found that the two boats in front of us had left so moved up onto their mooring which is a bit straighter. The intention is to remain here until Sunday then head back towards Foxton where we will potter around until Tuesday afternoon when we’ll head out to Debdale Wharf ready for the boat to be cleaned and blacked on Wednesday to Friday. Looks like we are going to be in this area for about a week.

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Foxton Locks

Here I am Rune
Distance 2.7 miles
Total 485 Locks 11 Tunnels
Running total mileage 661.4 miles

Not much in the way of mileage today but a big jump in the number of locks having now passed through the Foxton flight (10)once again. In fairness we passed through them fairly quickly, particularly as we were the first in the queue coming down so all of the locks were set in our favour following the last boat coming up the flight. This did initially cause a small piece of confusion when we went into the first lock as the system is there are two side paddles to open, one painted red and the other painted white (the same at Watford flight). The mental reminder is ‘Red before white you’ll be alright’ so you first open the red paddle which allows water into the next lock down from the side pound, then you open the white paddle which drains the upper lock into the side pound. The small confusion was caused by the fact that when the red paddle was raised on the first lock nothing happened! This was due to the fact that the lower lock into which we were travelling, was already full so everything from the upper lock goes into the side pound so the action only takes place as you open the white paddle. Soon sorted and on our way through the locks which takes less than an hour, watched by countless visitors to the locks. Tomorrow on to Market Harborough.

View from the top of the flight

Bronze statue of boy and horse near to top of flight

The flight itself

View from the bottom of the flight

Wednesday, 25 June 2014


Here I am Rune
Distance 10.6 miles
Total 475 Locks 11 Tunnels
Running total mileage 658.7 miles

Another gentle day’s travel, although we have covered over 10 miles which is quite good for us. Stopped off at the chandlers by bridge 45,North Kilworth Wharf, to get a replacement seal for the weed hatch. Noticed this 2 days ago at Crick when I took off the weed hatch to remove someone’s  T-shirt that was wrapped around the propeller, the seal wasn’t in a good condition and was disintegrating. If it fails altogether it tends to fill the engine compartment with water so felt it would be advisable to remedy the problem!

Tomorrow we reach Foxton Locks for the second time in RUNE and on this occasion I will try to remember that there is a bit of a kink between the upper 5 locks and the lower 5 locks, last time managed to collide (gently) with the lock entrance as I hadn’t realised this.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014


Here I am Rune
Distance 5.0 miles
Total 475 Locks 10 Tunnels
Running total mileage 648.1 miles

Didn’t get quite as far as planned today, basically we are in the middle of nowhere surrounded by sheep, a pastoral idyll if I were an artist! Have included a picture of our rural retreat here intending to show all of the sheep however when they saw the camera come out they all scarpered to the other side of the field except the three in the centre of the frame by the canal (three light coloured blobs).

 Bit of a slow start due to taking on water, emptying of cassette and some shopping so didn’t really get moving until after midday. Stopped for lunch at about 2.45pm and never got going again, such is the stress of this way of life.

The other reasons for the slow progress is that the canal itself is quite shallow so running the engine above 1450rpm doesn’t really achieve much other than moving more water, it doesn’t make the boat go any faster. The second reason is that the boat is booked in for blacking about 16 miles further up the canal and we have a week to get there, no real rush then. We’ll have to see where we reach tomorrow but the main plan will be to get to Market Harborough by Friday where I hope to get the broken spoke on the wheel of the tandem repaired.

Our Rustic retreat (complete with sheep)