Thursday, 26 September 2013

Big Trip - Day 31

The moorings at Kilby Bridge are pretty good.  We were so far back along the line that we couldn't hear the road at all; there's the odd train going by, but nothing to worry us.

We set off this morning at 8am, bound for the water point.  Our hire boat lock companions from yesterday were just finishing up, so the timing was perfect.  We filled the tank and started a wash load.  Half an hour later, we set off properly.  We knew the locks would be against us, but we hadn't bargained for the low water levels in some of the pounds, which were at least a foot down in places.

The third and fourth locks of the day were close together, and as we were in the lower one we could see the hire boat in the one above.  They kindly lifted the paddles for us as they left, and waited for us at the next lock, which is a little way ahead.  We shared the locks with them right up to the top, and had a great time chatting to each other.

The stretch between the locks and Foxton includes Saddington Tunnel.  It's 881 yards long, and you can see the far end.

We'd planned to moor before the junction at Foxton.  We didn't think we'd fit into th first space, but thought there was one further along.  Of course that turned out to be the water point; two water points, in fact.  The only moorings at the junction itself were at the pub garden, and we didn't fancy that, so decided to go up the locks.  We waited outside Bridge 61, and I went up to find the lock keeper, along with a lady from a boat which had just come through from Market Harborough.

We didn't have long to wait, as there was just one boat on its way down.  We were the second of three boats booked to go up.  It had turned into a sunny afternoon, so there were plenty of gonzoozlers about, most of whom wanted to know how look it took to go up, where we'd come from, and where we were going.

The flight is great fun, and the ten locks take only about 45 minutes.  But some of the side ponds were very low, and we struggled to get over the cill in a few of the locks.  There were volunteer lock keepers on duty, but someone who looked like a pro turned up as we neared the top, and began running some water down.

We were at the top at around 3.30pm, and there was no-one on the extensive visitor moorings at all.  We've tied up at the first space beyond the water points and the disabled mooring.  All the boats which came up are now moored here.  It's lovely and quiet here, and the towpath is actually nicer than at the bottom.

We have a dinner engagement this evening on board Lois Jane, which is moored at the bottom.  I've just made a cake for dessert.

10 miles, 22 locks.  (393 miles, 249 locks)

1 comment:

Ali and John (NB Triskaideka) said...

Hi, Looks like you are having a great cruise.

According to Glyn Bumford, the Enforcement officer at Foxton, you can moor on the water points on the Leicester arm at Foxton before bridge 60, (as you can at Market Harborough) although I still think that the mooring signs say that they are service moorings, but there is one 48 hour mooring just before bridge 60, which we like!