Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Northern Oxford.

Monday 22 August. 9 1/2 miles, 3 locks.

Set off from Braunston at a reasonable hour and turned right up the Oxford Canal. A nice warm day to just cruise along at under 3 mph with the noise of the M45 to interrupt the peace of the country for a short time. Stopped short of the Hillmorton locks for lunch before walking down to the Canal settlement for a look. When we went through here in 2010 everything was closed up. Now every thing except the cafe is closed. Back to the boat to set off down the locks. Well it's Monday and there are hire boats every where and one of the paired locks is broken. As we are behind about 5 boats going down we get to enjoy the entertainment of enthusiastic amateurs. One kid fell off the top of the boat onto the front deck and I saw a 4-5 year old with a bleeding nose while a 6 year old sister was happily swinging a windlass. Eventually we are through and heading for Tescos at Rugby before a planned mooring outside Rugby for the night. As we approach Rugby we spy a kiwi flag and then recognise the name Waiouru on the boat. Quick reverse and try to fit into a 58ft gap behind. As it doesn't fit we hang off the back and chat for a good half hour before continuing to Tescos. It is now later than planned so stay the night there.

Tuesday 23 August. 8 miles,  1 tunnel, 1 swing bridge.

I pop back into Tescos to pick up another loaf of bread but it appears I got the last one last night. We leave Rugby and once through the Newbold tunnel it is countryside again. We find a spot with some shade and a wide towpath for lunch. Out with the generator and two loads of washing get done. With the hot weather it should dry quickly. We move on and after passing the M6 decide to get a bit away from the motorway noise before stopping for the night. We don't mind trains as they go past quick and reasonably quietly. We have nibbles and drinks on the towpath on a lovely warm summers night. We have changed our minds about quiet trains. They are passing every 5-6 minutes and a number of them are freight trains which don't go past quick as they are so much longer. Note to self, Make sure there is some form of vegetation between trains and boat.

Wednesday 24 August. 13 miles, 1 lock.

Under the M69, then alongside the M6 we reach Hawkesbury Junction where we pass through the 1 foot stop lock before doing a 180 deg turn onto the Coventry canal. Fill with water and head off north around Bedworth and past the Entrance to the Ashby canal. Went there in 2010 and would have liked to do it again but it takes 2 days to get to the nicest bit, so we go straight through. Next is Nuneaton where we meander through with a stop for diesel. Once out the other side into the country we moor up for the night. The rain starts about 2 hours later.

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