Braunston to Watford Locks 6.6 miles, 6 locks travelled in 4 hours and 20 minutes.
It was time to untie the ropes and set off after our Christmas and New Year break in Braunston. We had really enjoyed our stay, the only dampener to the start of our New Year was with a dog owner, but enough said about that.
Having left our mooring, we pulled on to the sanitary station to empty both toilet cassettes, fill the water tank and get rid of a lot of rubbish.
Keith then reversed the boat in to the junction and off we went.
It was time to say goodbye to Braunston for a while as we passed by The Boat House.
Their moorings are now restricted to 4 hours in the Summer months and 24 hour in the Winter. I have a feeling they will now get very few boats mooring up, which is a real shame. I waved goodbye to Braunston's beautiful church and then the stop house, where BW staff were hard at work.
Unfortunately this was not the case, there was no boat as two had gone up in front of us, so we moored up to wait up to an hour for a boat to come a long. I made us a coffee, whilst Keith went into the Chandlery opposite. We got to chat to Jonno and wished everyone there a Happy New Year.
When does one stop saying Happy New Year to people???
Having waited long enough, I went and set the first lock and Keith bought the boat in. Still no boat coming so we were on our own. We passed NB Hector (Another Roger Fuller boat) in the first pound. I was sad to see the Admiral Nelson pub all shut up again and the windows blanked out. No one has been able to make that pub pay, which is a real shame. I wonder how much longer people will keep trying, before it is turned into a dwelling?
As I arrived at lock 4, there was a boat going into lock 5, they had been moored in the pound. I asked "Would you like to share the last two locks", the gentleman said "Ok then", he moved his boat into the lock and waited for us to join him, which was very nice of him. We shared the final two locks, thanked them for waiting and wished them well, before we headed off into the tunnel. Whilst moving through the tunnel, I put some Cornbeef pasties in the back cabin stove to cook for lunch, so we could eat on the run. We arrived at Norton Junction at 12.20pm and saw Al and Del on Derwent No6 moored up, they popped their heads out of the side window and asked "Are you going up", we said we hoped to and would let them know what it was like. One of the first things I noticed as we cruised along was the the vegetation had been cut back on the offside.
It was fantastic to have no hanging branches getting in the way. The only draw back was you could see all the rubbish from the industrial units. Maybe the companies need to be made to clean up their mess?
We had been told towards the end lf last year, there would be a purge on the vegetation and it seems they were true to their word. Now they just need to tackle the over hanging hedgerows on the towpath side. The Cornbeef pasties were cooked so we ate them as we made our way to Watford Locks.
We arrived at the locks at 1.15pm moored up on the 48 hour moorings. Having locked the boat up, we walked up to see if there was anyone to ask about the water levels. We did find a BW employee who was just making himself a cuppa, he told us that the water level is pretty stable at the moment due to the rain we have had. So tomorrow morning we will be heading off up the locks and on towards Foxton.
It has been fantastic to be on the move again. For us to be moored anywhere for 14 days is very rare, we do like to be on the move, but Christmas and New year is different. So here's to being on the move again and to being back on our trading patch.
Chat soon xx