Another day when it looked promising first thing, then came on the rain. We left our overnight mooring just before 9, carried straight on at Gayton Junction, and moored in Blisworth for a quick walk up the hill to the shop for a few supplies.
Setting off again, it was straight into Blisworth tunnel, which was warmer and drier inside than out.
About a third of the way through the tunnel we caught up with a boat in front. Even our tickover was too fast, so I kept having to knock us out of gear to avoid getting too close. We usually get through it just under half an hour; today it took 45 minutes. However, going so slowly meant I was able to get a decent photo of the side shaft, so that's a minor ambition achieved!
We ended up sharing the locks with the slow boat, which turned out to be an ex-OwnerShips boat with a man and his mum on board. At the top lock, two boat were coming up, one of them being Reckless, (The Boat that Guy Built). Adrian asked the owner if he'd still got the steam powered shower on board; he said everyone asks that, and no he hasn't. In fact, most the Guy installations have gone!
We made rapid progress: locks were in our favour towards the top of the flight, then we started meeting boats coming up: Taverners Boat Club, which was moorings just across the cut from Thrupp Wharf Marina, are having their annual dinner tonight at Stoke Bruerne.
At the bottom of the locks, we were surprised to find the moorings completely empty. A couple of other boats have arrived since, but it's still very quiet here.
This afternoon, my second cousin, Catherine, along with her husband, Nigel, and her children, Grace and Matthew, came to visit as they live quite close. We reckon we haven't seen each other for about 35 years, so it was good to at least make a start on catching up. Grace and Matthew, who'd already had quite an exciting day learning about blacksmithing at the forge by the southern entrance to the tunnel, were very taken with Briar Rose, and we've promised them that next time we'll go for a trip.
5 miles, 7 locks. (34 miles, 14 locks)