Thursday, 29 September 2016


Here I am Rune
Distance 7.7 miles
Total 2139 Locks  90 Tunnels
Running total mileage 3067.8 miles

Made better progress today and we are now moored in Banbury, conveniently close to the Morrisons supermarket which will be ideal for the weekend shopping. I thought that today’s weather would be a bit wet as it was raining just before we got up this morning but it brightened up before we moved off and the rain almost stayed off all day, just beginning again as we entered Banbury and moored up.

I think we will probably stay here until Saturday to give opportunity for a bit of local shopping then continue to head north.

Wednesday, 28 September 2016


Here I am Rune
Distance 7.6 miles
Total 2135 Locks  90 Tunnels
Running total mileage 3060.1 miles

We have pretty much got to where I was hoping to get to, within a day’s travelling of Banbury to arrive there on Thursday. We need to stock up a bit on shopping on arrival since we are now out of bread and a couple of other essentials.

The trip today was excellent with the continuing ‘Indian summer’ I was back into shorts and sandals for steering the boat, hoping that we have more of the same tomorrow.

Tuesday, 27 September 2016


Here I am Rune
Distance 4.7 miles
Total 2130 Locks  90 Tunnels
Running total mileage 3052.5 miles

I think we may need to make a bit more effort tomorrow since today we have only done just under 5 miles and it is still 15.5 miles to Banbury, we need to cover at least half of that distance tomorrow as I’d like to be in Banbury by Thursday. There is a Canal Day in Banbury on Sunday and if we are too late getting there (Friday) the likelihood is that there will be no moorings left.

Part of the delay today was a queue at Pigeons Lock but that is just one of the things that happens and not worth getting excited about. We could have pressed on a bit further but it may have entailed going north of Lower Heyford which would have taken us up to about 4.45pm or 5pm by which time I’d rather be moored for the day.

Monday, 26 September 2016


Here I am Rune
Distance 3 miles
Total 2127 Locks  90 Tunnels
Running total mileage 3047.8 miles

After a week’s break from travelling we are now back on the move, although only a gentle day’s cruise since, when the rain came in we decided to call it a day. We are therefore only 3 miles along the canal from our last mooring. It all seems a lot slower now that we are back on the canal and off the river. Our normal engine speed of 1600rpm on the river gives us about 3.5 miles per hour, on the canal it drops to about 2.5 miles per hour due to the shallower depth.

First thing we did before setting off was to refill the water tank and we now have a brand new hose that is at least 10 metres longer than the old one so it should be easier reaching some water points. It was a good bargain to buy as well since in B&Q it was priced at £30 whereas in Wilko where I bought it, it was on the ‘reduced to clear’ shelf and was only £10.

Tomorrow I would hope that we make a bit more progress than we did today but I’m not sure where exactly I want to get to, we’ll see how we get on.

Sunday, 18 September 2016


Here I am Rune
Distance 5.2miles
Total 2125 Locks  90 Tunnels
Running total mileage 3044.8 miles

So now, after nearly 6 weeks off CRT waters we are now back onto the South Oxford canal heading north. It has been a pleasant 6 weeks and I have to say that, in some respects, I’m glad we didn’t get out onto the Thames up here in Oxford back in April, as was our original intention. Had we done so we wouldn’t have come back up the Thames after our visit to the Wey and Basingstoke, we’d have just gone back down to Brentford and off the Thames there. The weather has also been a big part of the trip since it has been fabulous for our trip along the river, and things always look better in good weather.  

Today’s trip went without any incident, I’ve now (temporarily) fitted a new Battery isolation switch and all is working OK. I say temporarily because the only switch that Oxford Cruisers had available was a 100 amp one and I don’t think that is quite big enough for the domestic batteries on the boat which hold 500 Amp hours of charge. I think I’ve worked out that our most powerful piece of kit on the boat, the hoover, draws about 135amps when in use so, when I get the chance I’ll replace the isolation switch I’ve fitted with a 200 amp one which should then be OK.

Friday, 16 September 2016

Pinkhill Lock

Here I am Rune
Distance 12.9miles
Total 2121 Locks  90 Tunnels
Running total mileage 3039.6 miles

Today’s cruise was a marked improvement on yesterday, the fix that I carried out on the faulty Battery isolator switch has held together all day and we have now reached within walking distance of Oxford Cruisers. A small downside was that we only got here after 5pm when they were shut for the day so hoping for some more success tomorrow.

The trip was good although I have to admit a couple of minor mistakes which nearly took us into the bankside foliage. The first one was on a particularly sharp corner in which I missed the tree immediately after the corner but was unable to straighten the boat up because we were now too close to the tree, chafed a bit of foiliage from the tree but didn’t hit it. The second instance was at a bridge called ‘Ten foot bridge’ where it is necessary to get right over to the right hand side of the river to pass under it due to limited visibility. Once you’ve done that however you cannot straighten the boat up until having passed through the bridge, by which time there isn’t enough space before you come into the riverbank, a measure of ‘hard astern’ did however prevent this but then needed a bit of shuffling around to get around the corner. A full length boat (72’) that we have met up with in the locks has been having even more ‘fun’ around this particularly winding piece of river.

Tomorrow hopefully we will be able to get on with the repairs and servicing of the boat.