Today has been another fantastically hot and sunny day – we seem to be blessed. Our journey started with a 200 yard cruise to where Del and Al were moored to say our farewells for the time being.
We found them tucking into a very good looking full English breakfast – they do know how to enjoy life!
We motored on through Braunston (extremely quiet) and got to the locks where we waited for another boat to share the flight with. The people on the boat we shared with had a cocker spaniel who died last November aged 16 1/2 ! – Oscar, you could have another 2 years mate! The Braunston tunnel comes hard on the heels of the top lock and it was bliss to experience it’s coolness for 1/2 hour or so.
The light at the end of the tunnel!
An hour on from the tunnel and after turning left at Norton Junction we arrived at the Watford Locks – 7 locks with 4 staircase locks in the middle of the flight. A staircase flight is when one lock follows straight into the next. They have side ponds to store the water for each lock and it’s important to operate the winding gear in the right order –“red before white and you’ll be alright”…………………….
‘Chance’ approaching the staircase flight at Watford. You can see the red painted winding gear on the left of each lock. On the other side of the trees to right is the M1 motorway and the Watford Gap services. The noise levels unfortunately don’t add anything to this idyllic canal scene.
‘Chance’ waiting for 3 boats to come down through the staircase. Enough time for James to wipe down one side and get the bow cleaned of the last months’ worth of dust from the marina (sad!)
‘Chance’ half way up the staircase – the end lock gates need to be twice as high as normal gates.
Out of the top lock and immediately confronted with the bridge carrying the M1 traffic.
We have moored up about 1/2 mile from the motorway (with very little noise and no neighbours). When we stopped at 5 o’clock the central heating control panel in the bedroom was showing the temperature at 31 degrees!
We’ve had a good day again today, but Oscar has been having trouble with the heat poor lad – and we’ve had to apply a lot of sun lotion to ourselves today. We’ll take Oscar for a walk when it cools down a bit later this evening.