About Me

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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.

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Canalway Cavalcade 1.

Although I have been to Canalway Cavalcade a few years ago, this was to be my first time by boat and the second long trip with the Byfleet Boat Club this year after the mass assault on the Basingstoke canal at Easter 2013. I was travelling with Kathryn Dodington, who was on nb Leo No.2, which was to be her home for the next six weeks after selling her house in Brookwood and waiting until June to move into the canalside house in Stoke Bruerne.
nb Leo No.2 on the Thames.
We departed Pelican Wharf on Tuesday, with the intention of getting to Bulls Bridge ahead of the main club contingent so that we could get back to Brentford on Wednesday morning to assist them up the eleven locks to Bulls Bridge, which included the Hanwell flight of six locks. The weather forecast was looking good for the next few days and we deserved some pleasant cruising after the extremely cold Basingstoke trip. Kathryn had already reversed out of her mooring and my engine was running after a single attempt at starting, which was unusual after the cold mornings when it needed a cocktail of additions through the air intake to encourage it to start at all, but I speak too soon, because as soon as I engaged reverse gear, it stalled! Up with the hatch to investigate and only then did I realise that the fuel cock was closed. This was to discourage a minute diesel leak in a union after changing the fuel filters and not something I would normally do.
Waiting at Molesey Lock.

It was such a beautiful morning and we had plenty of time, so opted to do the scenic route around Desborough Island, rather than through the Desborough Cut which is far quicker. It was a very pleasant run through Sunbury and Molesey locks to Kingston, where we moored up for the night. It was a very quiet night too, after some of the weekend nights previously spent there. Although mooring across the river from the waterfront bars, it is still close enough to hear the drunken bums shouting the odds until well into the early hours of the following morning.

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