Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Beyond Napton

It was an early start with us leaving last night’s mooring just after 7.30am.  We weren’t the first to move with one boat passing at midnight and two just on 6am.  However after the last few busy days on the canal it was nice to be on our own. Unfortunately this didn’t last long when we rounded a bend some 30 minutes later to see two boat crews frantically untying their mooring lines and pushing off in front of us.  To be fair, they were probably planning to leave and our appearance just made them work harder.

By 9am traffic on the canal had increased and we were careful to avoid meeting an oncoming boat at one of the tight bends on this contour canal.  Taking a bend a speed can result in a grounding; or worse; as the following boater found out!

missed the bend

OK…. we jest!  This boater appears to have dug themself a trench from the canal to the adjacent field and floated their boat into it before reinstating the canal bank.  The trench is on the uphill side and probably not likely to cause a breach but unless the “puddling” was reinstated the canal may leak.  The water in the trench is definitely soaking into the surrounding ground.

It came a a surprise to realise someone is living on the boat.


We assume they no longer require a licence and it appears the boat exterior is being repainted.  A cheap dry dock?

We descended nine locks today.  Two at Marston Doles and the seven in the Napton Flight.  Along the way Jan gave some lock advice to a hire boat crew who were still coming to grips with locks on their first day.


From a distance we couldn’t work out whether this sign was on the bow of the boat coming towards us or on the bridge behind.  Once the boat came up through the lock we realised the sign was on the boat.  It was too late to do any purchasing!

ice cream boatWe did wonder if they will be planning to moor at Cropedy for the music festival this weekend?

By now the familiar sight of Napton on the Hill could be seen along with the windmill.

napton on the hill The windmill is in the far left of the above photo on the skyline.  Still can’t see it?

napton mill

With our luck we didn’t get any assistance from the volunteer lockies until we reached the last lock.  This hire boat coming up didn’t need any helpers.  Plenty of energetic young’uns pushing, heaving, winding and chattering! Smile


We stopped at the bottom to top up the water tank before continuing on to Fox’s Gate where there was plenty of room.  Later in the afternoon Chris & Sarah on Dolcie Blue went past and then decided to moor in front.  We had one of those towpath conversations for about 30 minutes.  They are heading towards London whilst we need to go to Rugby.

fox's gate sml

Tonight’s mooring

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