Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Sloe-ly does it!

We’ve been hunting for more sloes this last week to increase our stock of sloe gin for next year.  We know it’s late in the season but they’re as rare as hen’s teeth on the Manhood Peninsular (that’s the historic, and correct, name for this little bit of land that sticks out into the English Channel).


We thought the Chichester Canal might bear fruit (literally) but it didn’t.  However, we did enjoy a bit of walk at the point where the road cuts through the canal and stops the passage of craft from Chichester Harbour to the city quay.


There are plans to install a lift bridge so that the whole canal will be navigable from one end to the other.  Until then, this little patch of reeds will continue to grow next to the road and the trip boat from Chichester Quay will have to continue turning and going back.


Today our sloe hunting luck was in and we found a stash while on a walk in Pagham Harbour Nature Reserve.


Taking a break from harvesting we walked up to the old quay at Sidlesham.  Boats once sailed up to this point from the open sea but nature has a way of changing things when it wants to.  We believe there used to be a tidal mill at the quay here.


The weather was glorious today and the views over this vast area of natural harbour were wonderful.


Getting back to harvesting,  the sloes became increasingly difficult and painful to reach - and the brambles didn’t help.  Thank goodness one of us is long enough!


Back home and the  fruits of our labour:  one we made earlier (going a nice colour already) and todays efforts which need another litre of gin between them.  It will all be worth the badly scratched hands when we enjoy a glass or two with friends next year.

We’re looking forward to being afloat again at the end of the week but it wont be on ‘Chance’ this time.

1 comment:

  1. Well done you - I didn't think you'd find sloes this late in the year - there was a bumper crop alongside the Hatton flight a few weeks ago - shame I didn't have the equipment (i.e. Richard) to help me pick them all - he was too busy working the locks (for nb Henry H).

    Sue, nb Indigo Dream

    p.s. my modest crop of sloes are going into a virtuous jam - just right for the sugar boost you'll need the morning after drinking all that gin! :-)