Thursday, 27 August 2015

On to Norton Junction

Reader KevinTOO kindly left a comment on our last post advising us nb Musn Grumble had a blog <link here>.  Then we received a comment from Vicki & Pete on Musn Grumble.  The grey matter started to kick in.  Vicki and Pete are another kiwi couple over for six months of canal cruising.  Now I realise they were calling out “Wakaroa”, which is the name of their blog.  The disappointment is we finally (and briefly) meet close to the end of their time afloat!

Last night I took the camera and tripod for a walk around Braunston Marina to do some more experimenting.

crane b&w

crane2 b&w

braunston flight

This morning Jan decided a change in my diet was required.  Breakfast would be spaghetti on weetbix.  OK I’m a garbage guts and can be rather adventurous with my eating; but this was going to be something novel!  In the end Jan realised she had confused a can of spaghetti for sliced peaches. Smile  Looks like spaghetti is on the dinner menu!

Jan walked up cardiac hill to visit the Braunston Butcher whilst I headed for AJ Canopies to discuss repairs to our cratch where it was hit and torn by a passing hire boat. I was somewhat surprised to be told they were too busy to take on any additional work.  It’s the first time I’ve experienced business being turned away.  Jan did rather better at the butcher’s, although she thinks the Braunston bangers have shrunk since we last visited.

Back at Waiouru we had an early lunch and then filled the water tank before heading towards the Braunston Flight.  It looked as if we might be going up the flight on our own, but then a boat appeared from behind us. We shared the locks with the crew of Dabchick.  The boat looked very familiar and on asking the steerer we were told it was an ex hire boat purchased two years ago.


The entrance to Braunston Tunnel is on an angle, which means you can’t see if there is an oncoming boat in the tunnel until you are in the portal.

tunnel entrance

There was a tiny light in the distance so there was at least one boat coming towards us. Both boats slowed to a near stop to pass without incident.  Then we could see another oncoming boat.  Passing this one proved to be slightly more difficult because the eastern end of the tunnel has a few kinks where the tunnel surveyor must have sneezed when using his theodolite.

tunnel exit We’ve only been through the tunnel three times and this was the first where we met oncoming boats.

Jan took a photo of the large hay bales on the fields.  It’s obviously hay baling time because the farmer at Newbold was doing the same last Saturday.

hayAs we approached Norton Junction a passing boater called out that the Buckby Flight was closed because of a damaged lock and there was a long queue of boats waiting to go down. When we arrived there was no sign of a long queue and we managed to grab the last vacant 48 hour mooring.  Actually most of the moored boats are facing the opposite direction.  There is a sign on the top lock advising the flight is closed due to a damaged gate on lock 12 (2nd from the bottom)

I managed to wash and polish the port side before beer o’clock.  Spaghetti for dinner! 

1 comment :

Ade said...

Hi Tom,
Hay bales were probably done and finished a fair few weeks ago. By the look of the colour of the field that's straw stubble and therefore straw bales moore usual for this time of year. Good luck with finding a cratch repairer.