About Me

My photo
After thirty years of hiring, I finally bought my own 50ft boat in 2005, which was built in 2001 by Andicraft at Debdale Wharf. I mostly cruise single handed and have no problem with that, although it does take a little longer than with a crew. My mooring is on the Wey Navigation, so I have a choice of routes on the Wey or the Thames.

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Basingstoke Assault 10.

We We were the first to enter St Johns top lock and again with help of volunteers, we made a speedy descent of the five in an hour.
Ready For The Off At St Johns Top Lock.

Butty Steerer Extraordinaire. (Photo by Kathry Dodington)
There was a better class of weed down here, which did not choke up the prop, though there was still plenty of rubbish in the cut. Luckily, the blades were clear for most of the way into Brookwood three locks. Good progress too in the long pound towards the Woodham flight and it was a pleasure to be in deep water once again. Slowly past the houseboats of course and on to the last flight of the trip, where Sarah and her volunteers were waiting with the top lock open for us to sail in.
Breasting Up In A Lock. (Photo by Kathryn Dodington)
Thanks to them and all the other volunteers arranged by Kathryn Dodington and Martin Leech, without which the trip would have been so much slower and more difficult.
The turn into the Wey went very smoothly, despite the bridge 'ole immediately after, but getting into Pyrford marina was not so straight forward. David wanted the tow line very short; the same as the Woodham turn, but that took all the wash from Stronghold, thus countering the amount of power to pull Rowan round. I wanted it a little longer to avoid that. Whatever was the best option, we shall never know, as Stronghold entered cleanly through the entrance, but Rowan was unable to make it by 3ft and struck the piling hard. Who should be watching at the time? Steve Hughes, the marina manager. Why is it that when something goes wrong there is ALWAYS an audience? Whereas, if all goes well, it's like wetting yourself in a dark suit......you get a nice warm feeling, but nobody notices!
Inside the marina entrance, we breasted up to turn, but because of the difference in length between the two boats, it was not so easy and David and Jane shafted Rowan for the final few yards into her berth to await the arrival of the engineer.
They entertained me to lunch and we said final goodbyes, before I cruised back to the boat club, where I was greeted with warm cheers of welcome.....very much appreciated and thank you.
The day was rounded off with a Chinese takeaway and the usual humorous rowdy debriefing, before we gradually crept off to recover from a strenuous, but another very satisfying cruise.

Ray The Tug.


R King said...

Well done Ray - just the right person to volunteer for the tow duty. Good to see you achieved it in good time.

Just an update on earlier post: Nancy Bell's jury-rig pump worked well, and new pump on order.

See you on the cut.


Sandra Louise Walsh said...

Great blog Ray - I'm following now!
Barry says to tell you he's been in touch with Dickie Deal and they'll be arranging a catch up after his next voyage in a couple of month's time!