Lived on-board Hadar

Daisypath Vacation tickers

Friday, December 31, 2010


Jo and Keith would like to wish our customers, family and friends a very Happy New Year. Thank you for your support throughout 2010 and we look forward to seeing you all in the New Year.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A Very Happy Christmas.

Keith and Jo would like to wish all their Customers and Friends a Very Happy Christmas and all the very best for the New Year.
We hope that you have a wonderful festive time and it is a happy and safe one.
We look forward to seeing you all in 2011.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Here we go again.....

Hi Folks.

Here we go again, I feel a song coming on.

The temperature here at the moment is almost -4°C and the canal is solid, but if your living on a boat you will already know all of this. I think we can safely say that this is a hard one. We have had two Winter's in one year and for some it is a Winter too far. We are however prepared for what this cold snap has to throw at us. If the online forecasts are correct, then this is going to continue until at least Christmas and who knows it maybe a White Christmas for a change. It has been a blessing for us being moored in the right place at the right time, in our case Market Harborough. We have been stuck here ever since we ploughed through ice from Foxton on the 26th November. Gosh it seems like an age ago. The downside to being frozen in, we cannot get to our customers at Crick or Welford, but we have been in touch with them and given them other alternatives if they are in need of fuel. We do not like letting people down, but unfortunately there is nothing we can do about the weather. No sooner we can move, we will be back on track with our deliveries.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Ice Breaking in the basin for the hire company.

Keith had fun breaking the ice up for the hire company, so they can get their hire boats pumpouts done on Monday.

Coal delivery and Ice breaking.

It has been a very busy day because we filled our hold with a new coal delivery this morning. Tom and Chris arrived and immediately began unloading the coal. It was so much easier because the lorry had a crane arm lifting each pallette off the lorry and down to the wharfside. Then Keith and Tom handed the coal sacks to me and I stacked them in the hold. This should keep us going until after Christmas. Afterwards Keith did some ice breaking in the basin so the hire company can move some of their boats to the service area Monday as they need pumpouts, he then reversed the boat back down the canal to our original mooring, where I think we will be for a while yet, because the canal is still frozen.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Breaking Ice.

We managed to move Hadar 200 metres into the basin ready for a coal delivery tomorrow, but it did take all of 1hr 15mins!! Most of that was trying to get away from the towpath mooring, but once into the middle of the canal and deeper water I was breaking the 3" thick ice quite comfortably. A huge thank you to everyone who helped us break the ice this morning to get us moving. It was very much appreciated.

Tomorrow we will be taking on a coal delivery, which will be very welcome to all of our customers, who are depending on us at the moment to keep them warm.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Radio Interview.

Last year Keith and I were invited to appear on the local radio station Hfm. Moley one of the Dj's asked us if we would like to be on his show and we of course jumped at the opportunity. But because Keith was ill most of last Winter, we never got the chance to go into the radio station. Today we put that right and at 1pm we were on air with Moley answering the listeners questions and discussing the Waterway's with Moley. Time really does fly when your having fun, because before we knew it the clock was showing 3pm and time for Moley to wrap up his show. Keith and I had a really good time and were made to feel very welcome by everyone at the station. It is definitely something I would do again.
Before we left for the radio station, we enjoyed a coffee and a natter on NB Acen with Jo and John, who also invited along Chrissie and Richard from NB Digitalis and Jill and Don from NB Idunno, a good time was had by all. We had to cut our visit short to go to the radio station.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Christmas comes to our boat.

With the weather being the way it is, it seemed like the right time to put up the fairy lights and Christmas Tree. If only Christmas Day was here, because with the snow we have it would be very festive.

Is it a lane or is it the canal........................... It's the canal.

Frozen in and going nowhere. As someone said to me today. We are all in the same boat. The weather forecast is not hopeful of this ending anytime soon, so it looks like we will be here for sometime. Thank you all of our customers who have driven to us to collect their coal. If we could move we would, but at the moment it is just not possible.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Market Harborough in the Ice.

We are now moored at Market Harborough on the towpath outside of the basin, having left Bridge 14. We managed to plough through the ice. Overnight we had some snow, so we are now in a Winter wonderland. We have had a busy day supplying our customers with coal and kindling.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Foxton to Bridge 14 near Market Harborough.

We are now moored at Bridge 14 near Market Harborough having moved in the dark and ice after being filmed by a film crew for most of the day at Foxton. 4.3 miles, 2 swingbridges in 2 hrs 25 mins.
We had a fantastic day with Ian, Tony and Bertil, who came and did some filming with us at Foxton. It was an absolute pleasure to spend the day with them. They wanted to capture us delivering to some of our customers. The weather certainly played the part, because it was freezing. There was even ice on the canal. Having said cheerio to them at 3.20pm, we headed for Market Harborough with the light fading fast. We found we then had a problem, our temperature gauge was rising rapidly, which meant one thing. The impeller had broken up in the water cooling pump, so we stopped the boat in the middle of the canal and set about finding the cause. We had guessed right the impeller was shot, so we replaced it and were soon on our way again. We arrived at bridge 14 in the dark, so moored up in front of NB Lady Gwendolyn, who we ill be supplying with coal in the morning. We have had dinner and a nice hot shower. All's we want to do now is relax until bedtime. Tomorrow we will try and get into Market Harborough.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Top of Foxton Locks to Rainbow Bridge.

We are now moored at the bottom of Foxton Locks near Rainbow Bridge 62, having descended the locks this morning. We had a very heavy over night frost, but it meant we had a stunning sunrise. There was no one else around, so we had the flight to ourselves. After leaving the locks we cruised down to Debdale, on doing so we passed NB Wilver. Bill stuck his head out of the side door's and said good morning to us. We had a quick chat and headed to the winding hole at Debdale, where we turned the boat around. We then returned to the bottom of Foxton Locks where we will be for a few days as we have people coming to see us. After mooring up, we shut the boat up and headed to bridge 61 for a coffee and a chat with Tony Matts. Jo then decided to use the laundrette, so that she could do all of the washing at once. It was well worth the £3 for the wash, as it got everything done at once.
Mo and Nessa on NB Balmaha are now moored behind us, so we will catch up with them tomorrow. It will be wonderful to catch up on all their news.
The day is now drawing to a close as the light is fading fast and the temperature is dropping rapidly, so we will be staying inside tonight.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Welford Arm to the top of Foxton Locks.

Hadar has a lovely full hold after taking on 6 tonne this morning from Hills Coal Merchants. Now moored at the top of Foxton Locks having done 8.58 in 4 hrs 20 mins. Keith and Jo have had a busy day. and are now relaxing.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Welford Junction to Kilsby Bridge No 8.

After another very foggy start to the day, we moved from Welford Junction to Kilsby Bridge No 8, after a very busy day supplying coal to regular and new customers. My hold is almost empty, so I am looking forward to a refill on Tuesday. Jo and Keith need to order more coal.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Bridge 57 to Welford Junction

We are now moored at Welford Junction after a pleasant mornings cruise. It was foggy to begin with, but once the sun burnt through the haze it turned into a beautiful day. We stocked up customers with coal on route and met another at Welford Junction. We will be here for tonight, tomorrow we are heading to Crick to supply customers with fuel. Keith is still struggling with his back. The sack truck with towels inside the tyre has been tried and tested and it will do until we can get another sack truck sorted out.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Market Harborough to Bridge 57.

Jo set off early this morning on foot into Harborough to get a puncture repair kit so Keith can repair the puncture in the trolley tyre. Keith was going to go into town to try to get another trolley, but his back decided to go again yesterday, and having to unload 32 bags of coal and deliver them didn't help. When Jo returned with said puncture repair kit we set off for Foxton locks. as we were ascending them a boat started down from the top, so we had to pull into the side at the middle pound and wait for them to pass. We had intended no stopping just above the locks, but decided to carry on a bit further asn we had a coal delivery to make, and having found the customers boat at Bridge 57 we decided to moor there for the night, and to get the puncture repaired so we can deliver the coal.

Trolley Tyre Update:-

Having tried 2 puncture repairs, and both having failed, the 2nd more dramatically by ripping the inner tube, We have given up on that score. The problem is that unlike cycle tyres where the tube is similar in size to the tyre, so doesn't expand too much. However the inner tube of our trolley is far smaller than the tyre and has to inflate and expand quite a bit to fill the tyre, thus any repair gets stretched and fails. As a temporary fix we have stuffed towels inside the tyre and will try it out with our next customer to see if it works. Keith is rather surprised that the inner tube is that much smaller than the tyre, he will take it up with ATS who supplied the new tubes and tyres at the first opportunity.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Black Horse Bridge to Gallows Hill

Having had our Tesco's delivery at Black Horse Bridge, we have moved to Gallows Hill for the night, having crept through the thick fog this morning. We had coffee and a chat with Bill and Virginia on Wilvir and delivered them some coal.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Foxton Locks to Black Horse Bridge

Having had the broken wheel of our sack barrow successfully repaired by Sam Matts of Foxton Boat Services we moved Hadar to Black Horse Bridge Foxton, ready for our Tesco Delivery tomorrow morning. We are contemplating getting another sack barrow as a standby as we can't cope without one.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Top of Foxton Lock to Foxton Junction.

We moved down through Foxton locks this morning and are now moored at the junction for the weekend. Despite being a bit chilly and a still quite strong winds, it has been a lovely sunny morning trip down through the locks.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Keith's Mushroom and Bacon Omelettes

Keith attempted to make mushroom and bacon omelettes for breakfast today.

He needs more practice!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Bridge 51 to Top of Foxton Locks

After the buffeting winds of the past couple of days this morning was dead calm, not a breathe of wind disturbed a single leaf, which made for a pleasant run to the top of Foxton Locks. Keith entered a competition on our local Radio Station Hfm to win a pair of tickets to watch Leicester play the Derby at the Walkers Stadium in Leicester. He didn't win, boo hoo. Neither of us has ever been to a football match, perhaps one day we will, just for the experience.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Welford to Bridge 51

Yet another windy morning as we headed up the Welford arm to deliver some coal, then winded and returned back to the main line and headed toward Foxton but at least it wasn't raining. With the occasional sunshine turning into every blacker clouds we decided to moor up near Bridge 51.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Crick to Welford Junction

Yesterday we moved through Crick tunnel to the winding 'ole near the M1 bridge and returned to Crick to moor opposite ABNB, but out internet signal was non-existent.

This morning we moved on again to Welford Junction, despite the gale force winds and lashing rain. The inside of Hadar is steaming with all the wet clothes drying in the heat of the coal stoves.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Welford Junction to Crick

Despite being in what we thought to be the countryside last night at Welford Junction we could still here some fireworks, but they were not enough to rouse Paddy from his bed!

Another beautiful mornings run through to Crick, wall to wall sunshine, and no wind!

Friday, November 05, 2010

Village at War Photographs.

Hi Friends.

We wanted to share some photographs with you which were sent to Jo yesterday. Thank you to Peter Frost for sending us some of the photographs he took of us at Stoke Bruerne's, Village at War Weekend at the beginning of October. Deep in thought.
Taken by Peter Frost.

Something to smile about.
Taken by Peter Frost.
Time for a cuppa.
Taken by Peter Frost.Taking a break from Brass cleaning.
Taken by Peter Frost.Anyone for a brew?
Taken by Peter Frost. A Step back in time.
Taken by Peter Frost.

Foxton Locks to Welford Junction

A dull morning run, but fortunately the rain held off until after we moored up at Welford Junction. Hopefully should be a quiet November 5th for us here, if not we should have an excellent view across the valley towards Welford and any fireworks which may be in that vacinity.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Black Horse Bridge to Foxton Junction.

Our Tesco delivery arrived this morning, and once onboard we set off for the winding 'ole, Jo stowing the food away as we travelled. We winded, using the strong wind to good effect, and returned to the moorings just before Foxton Junction. As we were mooring up a Harrier screamed by.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Foxton Locks to Black Horse Bridge

What a taxing run this morning, all of 1200 yards, from the bottom of Foxton locks to Black Horse Bridge, Foxton. We had a great weekend, selling lots of coal. The weather wasn't too bad either. Keith managed to get another coat of red gloss paint on the wash bowl. Apart from touching up the green and yellow, and a couple of coats of varnish inside the bowl, it is nearly finished. He also rewired the temperature gauge, which he recently moved from the instrument panel in the engine room to the pigeon box. Hopefully it will now give a better reading, having moved the wire from the sensor to go directly to the gauge from the engine, rather than via the instrument panel, and doubling up the Positive supply wire from the panel to the gauge by using the now redundant wire which was being used for the sensor.

Whilst doing this he has also neated up the cabling from the panel passing underneath the Invertor/Charger to the engine, by refitting the spiral coating over all the cables and wires, including the new ones he has installed since the boat was built. He has also taken the opportunity whilst doing this of installing the new temperature sensor for the Invertor/Charger thus including the wires in the cable loom, but he still has to connect the two ends, which he will do next time he lifts the floor in the boatman's cabin and can get to the batteries. He also installed the cable needed to extend the wires needed for the new generator hour meter he will install in the instrument panel in the now vacant hole left by the moved temerature gauge. He will install it once it has reached the same number of hours as the existing meter on the generator, which is reading over 500 hours. He has had the new meter connected to 12volts for over a week now and it has clocked up 300 hours so far, only another 200 to go!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Back to Foxton Locks

We returned to Foxton locks this morning, mooring up before Rainbow Bridge No.62. Jo washed the boat whilst Keith did some water can and wash bowl painting in primer. Both are ready for top coats, the wash bowl requiring touching up after many years of neglect.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Foxton to Smeeton Westerby

An uneventful run from Foxton to wind before Saddington Tunnel, and back to moor near Smeeton Hill Bridge No.70. The repair to the collapsed culvert looks good, but they are still working in the area of the ditch, probably just tidying things up.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Coal Delivery Filming, then on to Bridge 5.

Upon our arrival at Union Wharf yesterday ready for our coal delivery this morning, David and Viv on "First Fruits" told us they were expecting a film crew to come and film onboard their boat, interviewing a local canal man, who was at the inaugaral IWA festival at Market Harborough in 1950. This all sounded very exciting, and we both looked foraward to seeing this happen whilst we were there. As we were loading the 3 tonnes of coal this morning, the film crew turned up, and whilst they were waiting for the interviewee to arrive they started filming us loading the coal.

Jo was telling them all about her coal business and the boat, in between the coal being barrowed from the truck to the boat. They even caught me loading some coal for once!

After doing the interview they had come for they asked if they could film from onboard Hadar as we left the basin, which we did.

The filming is for a program to be shown on BBC some time next year, they will let us know when it is to be screened and we will let you know. Of course no doubt the film about us will probably end up on the cutting room floor, but it was a bit of fun and excitement. Having safely dropped the camera and sound man off a little way along the canal we continued on to Bridge 5, where we met up with Richard and Chris off of "Digitalis", and had a coffee and cake with them whilst chatting about our summer adventures. They have invited us onboard for dinner, which we are now looking forward to very much.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Foxton to Bridge 14 then onto Market Harborough

Yesterday we moved down through Foxton locks on a beautiful autumnal morning, with very clear views out across the valley below the locks. We stopped at bridge 14 and walked into Market Harborough to get a replacement shower and a new shaver for Keith, the shower themostatic valve had packed up and Keith's shaver had broken. It was just as cheap to buy a complete new shower from Plumb Center rather than just the valve, and they had the complete showers in stock, but we would have to order and wait for just the valve. A quick visit to Argos secured a new shaver at half price, the sort of deal Keith likes just at the right time too. Keith soon fitted the new shower and we both enjoyed our showers that evening.

This morning we were up earlyish emptying out the bilge under the engine, whist the hold was light on coal and the bow was higher out of the water, making it easier to mop out. Once completed we set off for Union Wharf to moor up in the basin ready for our delivery of 3 tonnes of coal, some more kindling and firelighters tomorrow morning. We have already had 3 customers for coal since arriving at the basin this morning.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Welford to Top of Foxton locks.

A surprising morning's run today. First we saw a pheasant shoot alongside the canal, then a hunt galloping across the fields, real outdoor life, just what living on the canal is all about.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Watford Gap to Welford

Another longish day today, 6hrs 35mins, but it was a lovely autumnal day. Soon after we set off I noticed the ignition light was on and a quick check showed that the starter alternator belt had broken. Having arrived at Welford Wharf and sold some coal we returned back down the arm to the visitor moorings between the marina and Welford lock for the night. Now changing a drive belt should be easy, but no, upon having taken the safety cover off I realised that both of the 2 belts for the domestic alternator and the belt for the remote water pump for the engine had to be taken off first before being able to replace the broken one. Still the procedure was simple enough, and the brand spanking new belt was soon fitted and working. Makes me glad we carry spares for such emergencies, which of course makes them not an emergency.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Foxton to Welford Junction, then onto Watford Gap.

Yesteday we were 2nd boat up through Foxton locks, on a chilly but bright morning. The run through to Welford junction was fairly uneventful.

This morning, with a frost on the ground we set off for Crick. Along the way we managed to sell 22 bags of coal, our best day yet. We winded Hadar at the winding 'ole between Bridge No.7 and the M1 Motorway bridge and have moored up near Bridge No.8 for the night, feeling slightly knackered but with a warm satisfying glow.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Bridge 14 to Foxton

We travelled to Black Horse Bridge this morning to await our Tesco delivery. It was due to arrive between 11.00am and 1.00pm. It arrived at precisely 11.00am. Once it was all packed away we moved Hadar 600yards nearer to Foxton locks, to the moorings just before the swing footbridge. Having had lunch Keith unpacked the parcels we picked up yesterday from Union Wharf to check that all the items ordered were there. We couldn't believe one large box which contained 3 tins of paint and loads of bubble wrap. The box was big enough to get at least 20 tins in it! Despite all the packaging 2 tins were dented. The bubble wrap will come in useful though for wrapping breakable items we sell. The hour meter is now clicking away as it has to reach 500 hours before Keith installs it, should only take 21 days! This hour meter will work in parallel with the one on the generator, but will be mounted in the control box with the engine hour meter and voltmeters so it will be easier to read than the one on the generator without having the remove all the soundproofing, and can be read at the same time as the engine one.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Gallows Hill, to Union Wharf then Bridge 14

Jo received a phone call to say we had some large parcels for us waiting at Union Wharf, so we upped stakes and returned there to pick them up, winded and returned to Bridge 14. The parcels were all the spares Keith ordered. Such things as fuel and oil filters, water pumps, impellors, etc. We now have a good stock which should last us a few years and save us money in the long run. The spare pumps are just in case one should break down and we are not near a Chandlery, especially during the winter whilst on our coal run, as we are lacking in Chandleries on our patch. A new hour meter for the generator which will replace the temperature gauge in the control panel once I move the gauge to the pigeon box. As we have had problems with the cheap circulation pumps for the back boiler I have decided to replace them with an expensive one. The tins of Lauderdale Blue paint are so we can start changing the paler blue we incorrectly chose for Hadar's colour scheme. Lauderdale Blue is what we should have used, so don't be surprised to see Hadar running with a mixture of the 2 blues until we complete the whole changeover. Keith is starting with the new water cans which will be in the new blue livery.

Harborough to Gallows Hill

Yesterday morning we moved to Gallows Hill as we had a customer waiting there who needed coal. The fishermen were out in force along the way.

Keith started to paint one of the new water cans with a coat of primer after repairing the side handle, which fell off in Jo's hand as she was passing out to Keith from the hold. The solder joints had failed but 4 brass bolts, nuts and washers have made a substantial repair. He will leave painting the other can until he can buy some more nuts and bolts, just to be on the safe side. The handle on the other can seems to be better attached, but he doesn't want to take any chances seeing as we want to actually use them to hold water. Far easier to make a decent repair before he paints it and hopefully no one will notice.

He refitted the new tyres to the trolley, they must be gold plated inside, as they cost just over £86! Each tyre was £30.13 and each inner tube was £12.92. Makes us glad we no longer have a car with 5 tyres!!

He also reset the Kohler generator speed so that the output was at 52.5Hz under no-load condition, as recommended by the manufacturers, but not quoted in their manual. Under load the frequency drops, as noticed by Simon when he checked our Victron Invertor/Charger the other week. When the generator was delivered it was set incorrrectly at 60Hz for the USA, despite all the signs and badges on it saying it was 50Hz. Keith had readjusted it, but of course he set it to 50Hz under no-load. Although it hasn't caused any problems so far, he is happier now it is set correctly. Life is so much better and easier when you know all the facts.

Our replacement battery had arrived at Union Wharf, which we picked up whilst we were there, and fitted in place of the damaged one. I take my hat off to Kuranda for sorting it out for us. They managed to persuade Victron that it should be replaced under warranty, which is excellent. We would also like to thank them for sorting out the problems with our Victron Invertor/Charger, with a visit by Simon whilst we were at Crick, which is working perfectly again. All this was despite the fact that both Darren and Brett were going firstly to the IWA National at Beale Park, and then the Southampton Boat Show which made life interesting for the pair of them. It was a recommendation by Roger Fuller our boat builder to have Kuranda supply all our major electrics, and we are glad now that we did. It certains has paid off getting all our kit from one supplier as we only have to contact one place, and all their kit is known to work together. No having one company saying, "Nothing wrong with our kit, it's the other guys stuff!" and the other saying the same. Unfortunately they will have to wait till next summer to get Jo's cake she will bake for them when we get to Whaley Bridge.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Foxton to Market Harborough.

We have returned to the towpath just outside Union Wharf, Market Harborough, having cruised the 4.8 miles, in 2hrs. Whilst Keith went off to try and get our trolley tyres fixed, I went and did some Veg and Fruit shopping. We will be here for a couple of days, as we have appointment to keep.

Top of Foxton Locks to Black Horse Bridge.

Hi Friends.

Having spent a lovely weekend above the Foxton Locks we are now moored at Black Horse Bridge, Foxton after a pleasant run down through Foxton locks this morning. We can now enjoy the afternoon Autumn sunshine whilst we wait for my customers, who are collecting coal later on.

Welford Arm to Foxton.

Hi Friends.

We are now moored next to Gumley Road Bridge No.60, just above Foxton top lock. Having cruised 8.6 miles, worked 1 lock, in 3hrs 30mins. It has been a foggy old morning. Even in Husbands Bosworth tunnel. So much so that we could not see the exit portal until we were 300 metres from it. Hadar was pushing the fog through the tunnel! Time for some much needed lunch and then we will see what the afternoon brings.

Yesterday we travelled to, and moored up for the night at Welford Wharf outside the Wharf Inn, but we couldn't get a decent internet connection to report our location at the time. We delivered coal to the Inn which should last them until December.

Now above the Buckby Flight.

Hi Friends.

We are now moored above Buckby top lock, have cruised 1.9miles, worked 7 locks, in 2hrs 10mins. We are close to the New Inn Pub. We had a nice cruise up the flight, with the help of the crews off of Relaine and Annie Rose, who followed us up the flight. Thank you for their help. We have had an afternoon of boat jobs, which are now all done. Moored in front of us are Ray and Jayne on NB No Direction. Tomorrow we are heading on to the Leicester Arm to begin the Winter coal run properly, so if you need coal and your on the Leicester Arm from Crick down to Market Harborough, please look out for us.

Stoke Bruerne to Muscott's Bridge (18)

Hi Friends.

Keith and I enjoyed a fantastic weekend at Stoke Bruerne. The Village at War event was just brilliant. So a huge thank you to everyone who helped to make it such a wonderful event. Although Sunday was a wet day, people still came out and enjoyed everything that was going on. We will definitely be going again next year.

We left Stoke Bruerne this morning behind the Cheese and Fudge boats and are now moored at Muscutt Bridge (18) near the Heart of the Shires Shopping Village, which we paid a visit too.

On our journey this morning we met up with Lesley off of nb Caxton and Jill off of nb Matilda Rose, they were out walking their dogs. We did not get the opportunity to stop for a chat, but hopefully we will see them again sometime for a proper natter.

It has been a wonderful day, with lots of sunshine. Tomorrow we will make our way up the Buckby Flight. Let's hope we have someone to share with.

At Stoke Bruerne.

Hi Friends.

We are now safely moored at Stoke Bruerne ready for the "Village at War" weekend this coming weekend. We have been looking forward to this for some time, and it always nice to know we have arrived in plenty of time and not been held up on the way, phew, what a relief.
We only cruised for 2 hours and did 5.3 miles, but at least we stayed dry. The forecast was for heavy rain. The wettest part of the cruise was in Blisworth Tunnel.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Almost at Stoke Bruerne.

Hi friends.

We have had a long day today travelling from Crick to Bridge 42 on the Grand Union Main line between Bugbrooke and Gayton junction. 14.9 miles, 14 locks, 8hrs 20mins, phewww! Still just a short run tomorrow to Stoke Bruerne ready for the weekend, which we are both looking forward to ;0)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Mountain Barn Bridge to Crick

Hi friends old and new.

We left our overnight mooring at Mountain Barn Bridge and are now moored at Crick for the weekend, after cruising in strong winds and a howling gale. With the weather taking a down turn, coal sales are on the increase, as people decide it is time to light their fires. It was nice catching up with some old friends and meeting some new friends, who we hope to supply coal to this Winter, as we continue the coal run from Crick to Kilby Bridge, Welford and Market Harborough. Life does not get much better than this.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Welford Junction to Mountain Barn Bridge.

Hi Friends.

We only cruised for a couple of hours and did 5.5miles. We are now moored near Mountain Barn Bridge No.27, we passed Callisto today, we must stop meeting them at bridge 'oles and bends :-) Had Ravioli for lunch and now watching 'Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid' a real classic.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Market Harborough to Foxton.

Hi Friends.

We have set off from Market Harborough for the "Village at War" weekend at Stoke Bruerne, but are stopping overnight near Foxton Junction for tonight, 5.15 miles 2hrs 25mins. A long the route this morning we dropped off coal to a couple of our customers and look forward to seeing them when we come back. It was a pleasant morning in the sunshine.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Happy Birthday.

Hi Friends.

We are back at Market Harborough for the weekend.
Keith is celebrating his Birthday today, so Happy Birthday sweetheart xxx.
It was a chilly old morning this morning, I was glad I kept the back cabin stove in overnight.
We are staying here for at least the weekend and then we will see what Monday brings.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Black Horse Bridge, Foxton to Bridge 14 Market Harborough.

Hi Friends.

Having had a Tesco food delivery this morning. We winded the boat below Foxton Locks and headed back towards Market Harborough. We are now moored at bridge 14, opposite the Union Canal Society moorings and will be here for a few days as Keith has to have blood tests done and we then have to wait for the results.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Market Harborough to Foxton Village.

We have returned to Black Horse Bridge Foxton, ready for our Tescos delivery tomorrow. We have to return to Harborough tomorrow, so Keith can have some blood tests done Wednesday morning.

We have had a fabulous time this past few days. Saturday we celebrated our Sixth Wedding Anniversary with a meal at The Shoulder of Mutton in Foxton, which was excellent. We also went to the Quids for Kids Coffee Morning held in Market Harborough by David Irving a radio presenter with Hfm. We were fortunate to be offered a lift with Stu and Kendall also radio presenters on Hfm. On Sunday we moved the boat to Market Harborough and went to the Arts Fresco event in the town, which was packed with over 30,000. The event was fantastic with street performers showing off their talents.
So all in all we have had a great time. I love being back on the Leicester Section of the Grand Union. We have been supplying our customers with their coal and have made some new contacts which are always welcome.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Saddington to Foxton.

Hi Folks.

We are now moored at Black Horse Bridge in Foxton after cruising for 4 miles, in 1hr 45mins. We spent a couple of days at Saddington, without any internet connection, due to poor mobile signal, so no one knew where we were. It was actually lovely to not be online for a change lol. We enjoyed a lovely walk to Saddington Reservoir, whilst we were there and just chilled out. Looking forward to a nice weekend now.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Foxton to Market Harborough.

Hi Friends.

We are now moored for the rest of the weekend on the towpath just outside Union Wharf, Market Harborough having cruised 5.5miles, worked 0 locks, not even the swing bridge as it is open for repairs. It took us 2 hours to get here, having dropped off coal to a customer. We then had another customer come to meet us at the basin to collect their coal order. So Hadar's hold is a little emptier. It is nice to be back on the Leicester Section of the Grand Union doing our Coal Run for the Second Year. We will be here now until the end of March, selling Coal, Kindling, Firelighters and Toilet Blue, so if you see us about come and say hello. We are looking forward to catching up with all our customers over the next few months.

Friday, September 03, 2010

Welford Arm to the Bottom of Foxton Locks.

We are now moored close to Foxton Junction, down the Market Harborough arm, having cruised 9 miles, worked 11 locks, in 5hrs 10mins.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Buckby Flight to the Welford Arm

Hi Folks.

We are now at the Welford Arm, having had a long but fantastic days cruising. We managed to cruise for 8 hrs and 35mins, doing 17.4 miles and 9 locks. I lost count of the bridges we went under ha ha ha. At the Watford flight Keith and I helped set locks for the four boats coming down, so we are now Cream Crackered but in a good way.
Hi to Diana and Brian on NB Return to Sender, who very kindly bought coal from us whilst coming down the Watford Flight. Thank you and we hope we will see you again sometime for a longer chat. I know you read the blog, so now you are famous for five minutes LOL.
Dinner is cooking so all is very well with our world. I think we may both sleep well tonight.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Stoke Bruerne to Anchor Cottage, Buckby Flight.

Loved this sign at Bugbrooke.

We are now moored at Anchor Cottage, Buckby Wharf, having cruised 14.3 miles, worked 6 locks, in 7hrs 30mins.

It was the longest cruising day this year for us 7½hours, but it has been a lovely day. We saw Barbara on nb Cloud Nine, which was lovely. We shared the locks with Keith and Jan on nb Salamander who are visiting from off the Middle Levels. We stopped near Anchor Cottage and moored up, where Keith made enquiries at the shop about unpainted real Water Cans, and she going to see if she can get him a couple. To finish off a perfect day we bought a couple of Mint Choc Cornetto's.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Moored at Stoke Bruerne

We are now moored in Stoke Bruerne, having shared the 7 locks with nb Manderlay on our 4.2 mile cruise, which took 3 hours 15 minutes. Having found a mooring we had lunch at the Spice of Bruerne, and very nice it was again.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Cosgrove to Yardley Gobion.

Hi Friends.

We left our Cosgrove overnight mooring at 9.05 am and headed up through Cosgrove Lock sharing with NB Free Spirit, we were both heading for the Sanitary Station. The actual block is being worked on at the moment, but you can still take on water and empty cassette's. The workmen have laid on facilities, whilst they work on the block. After a short cruise of 2.7 miles we found a mooring having only been on the move for 1 hr 15 minutes. We are now moored out in the countryside between Bridge 62 & 63, between Cosgrove and Yardley Gobion, where we will probably stay for the Bank Holiday weekend.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Great Linford to Cosgrove.

Hi Friends.

We are moored between Cosgrove lock and the Great Ouse Aqueduct. We did a food shop at Tescos at Wolverton on the way, during the drizzle, which stopped by the time we got here. Just have to decide whether to stay here or to head for Stoke Bruerne for the weekend, decisions decisions?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Now at Great Linford.

Yesterday we moored at Fenny Stratford, after an early start. We spent the day at Bletchley Park, which was very interesting and well worth a visit.

We are now moored at Linford Wharf, having cruised 5.8 miles, worked no locks, in 2hrs 25mins. We are going to have a wander around Great Linford to see what there is here, as it is a medieval village.

Monday, August 23, 2010

The Globe Inn to Stoke Hammond.

After a night of continuous heavy rain we decided to make a move and are moored at bridge 106, Stoke Hammond. With the rain stopping it seemed like a good idea to go. We even had some blue sky during our journey. The pounds are a little low on water, making it fun in places. Off to visit Stoke Hammond after lunch to see what is there.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Leighton Buzzard to near The Globe Inn.

We are now moored halfway between Leighton Buzzard lock, and The Globe Inn having cruised 1.27 miles, worked 1 lock, in 1hr 35mins. Stopped at Tesco's on the way for food shopping. We passed Carrie's NB Blackbird, but she was not around. A few jobs to do over the weekend on the boat, replace the broken circulation pump for the back boiler, grease the UV joints and rear bearing, check oil level in the gearbox, start to clean out the bilge under the boatman's cabin floor, polish the engine, and anything else we can think of in the mean time. Suggestions on the back of a post card please.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Great Seabrook to Leighton Buzzard.

Hi Friends.

After a really lovely cruise this morning we are now moored near the old railway bridge of the Leighton Buzzard Light Railway, having cruised 5.35 miles, worked 7 locks, in 3hrs 10mins.
Having walked into town and bought a few bits and bobs, we had a very welcome visitor call on us. Carrie off of NB Blackbird joined us onboard for a coffee and a good old catch up on news. I do love a good old chinwag. Thanks Carrie for coming to see us.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Marsworth to Great Seabrook.

Hello Dear Readers.

Only a short jaunt today. We are now safely moored above bottom Seabrook lock, having done 2.75 miles, 1 swingbridge, 4 locks, in 1hr 30mins.

At the bottom of the Marsworth pair, we met up with Turnothworld a copy of a Bridgewater Tug built by Roger Fuller in 1998. She looked absolutely splendid having just been repainted. Roger and crew are heading for the National Festival at Beale Park. It was nice to see them again, albeit very briefly.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Cowroast to the bottom of the Marsworth Flight.

We are now moored below the Marsworth flight, after a nice cruise down, with pretty views, having done 3.5 miles, worked 7 locks, in 2hrs 40mins.
We had lunch at the Angler's Retreat, and very nice it was too, followed off with a Mint and Choc Chip Ice Cream from Bluebells, first time it has been open when we have been passing through. It was extremely yummy.
This afternoon we were hailed by a voice which sounded familiar. Poking my head out of the galley window I was greeted by Les on NB Valerie. It was lovely to see Les and Sue. It has been a fair old while since we last saw him. We had a few moments to catch up with him, before he had to enter the lock with another boat. Hopefully it will not be so long before we see Les again.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Berkhamsted to Cowroast.

We are now moored above Cowroast lock, alongside the marina. Having done 2.38 miles, 7 locks, in 2hrs 40mins. Good deepwater mooring here, just how we like it. After lunch we went to the Chandlery to get some bits for work that needs to be done before the Winter.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Hemel Hempstead to Berkhamsted.

Hi folks.

We are now moored in Berkhamsted, it has been a good run with lots of boats travelling to the IWA National and most of the locks in our favour. We are now enjoying some lunch having done 3.85 miles, worked 12 locks, 1 swingbridge in 3hrs 55mins.

We met NB Vagabond with Bob and Nichola onboard, at Winkwell. They came out of the next lock as I was opening the swingbridge, so that worked out really well. Maybe next time we meet, we may get more time to chat about highs and lows of being a blogger. Nice to meet you both, if you are reading this, happy cruising.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Kings Langley to Hemel Hempstead.

We are now moored at Hemel Hempstead, having cruised 2.85 miles, worked 5 locks, in 2hrs. We are moored opposite B&Q, which is on the site of the Rose's Lime Juice Factory. Keith can remember the last boats to carry lime juice, from Brentford dock to here, to be made into the famous drink. We walked up into Hemel and had a buffet lunch at the Dragon Garden, and very scrummy it was too. Then we walked upto Jordans Antique Centre and browsed through the lace and ribbon plates, Measham and other goodies. It is like stepping back in time.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Cassiobury Park to Kings Langley.

Having enjoyed a lovely weekend moored up below the Cassiobury pair of locks we are now moored in a deep water mooring opposite Toovey's Mill Race, Kings Langley, we cruised 3.45 miles, climbed 8 locks, in 3hrs.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Rickmansworth to Cassiobury Park.

Hi Friends.

Having done a food shop at Tesco, we enjoyed a short cruise this morning and have now found a deep water mooring in Cassiobury Park, just above Ironbridge lock, having done 3.4 miles, 5 locks, in 2hrs 20mins. We will be here for the weekend. Might even set up shop and try to sell bits and bobs, a lot depends on the weather though.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Black Jack's to Rickmansworth.

Hi Friends.

We have successfully made it to Rickmansworth. I say successfully as as soon as we set off from our mooring above Black Jack's lock this morning the engine died. We were heading towards the island, and managed to get her tied up, sort of with some help from people on the island. To clean the oil filter yesterday Keith had drained some diesel out of the fuel filter, which had created an air lock. Having worked out what the problem was, we soon had it sorted out and were on our way again, but not after having a coffee with John off of Lincoln and Jane who owns the land. Thank you to everyone who helped us out.

Monday, August 02, 2010

Opposite Harefield Marina to above Black Jack's Lock.

Hi Friends.

We enjoyed a lovely weekend on the mooring opposite Harefield Marina. We also got the chance to meet up with family at the Horse and Barge, which was very enjoyable.
After a short jaunt we are now moored above Black Jack's lock. Another short run this morning, 1.16 miles, in 55mins but at least we did 2 locks this morning.

Having enjoyed our first coffee of the day, we then did an oil change on the engine, giving our old oil to the owner of Lincoln, who runs his DM3 on old engine oil. With lunch done and dusted, I was in the engine room, when a voice said "We like your blog" It was John and Judith on NB Serena who were travelling with NB Ubique. They are heading for the National Festival at Beale Park. As always it was nice to meet one of our blog readers. We look forward to seeing them again and with any luck we may spend a little more time chatting. Thank you for popping in and reading our blog. Have a safe trip and an enjoyable time at the festival.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Denham Deep Lock to Opposite Harefield Marina

Hi Friends.

We said good morning to Elaine and David on NB Patience, who passed us this morning on their way to the National Festival at Beale Park. Keith and I then enjoyed a lovely stroll around the lakes between Denham and South Harefield including the Hillingdon Outdoor Activity Centre where Keith learnt dinghy sailing, before moving Hadar to The Horse & Barge at South Harefield, which took a whole 35mins to do 1.5miles! We are going to spend the weekend here.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Uxbridge to Above Denham Deep Lock

Hi Friends.

We are now moored above Denham Deep Lock having done 0.7miles, 1 lock, in 40 mins, it was such an arduous cruise LOL. Once we moored up above the lock, we walked to the very pretty village of Denham. The village is approximately a mile from the canal. You walk through the Colne Valley Park and Golf Course. Having looked around this picturesque village, we had a coffee at The Green Man, which is right next door to yet another pub The Swan. We then took a leisurely stroll back to the boat, taking in the cafe at the Lock, where we bought some Chutney. Denham is well worth walking to, as it is an absolutely stunning little village, where many famous names have lived. Sir John Mills lived at Hills House from 1975 for 29 years.

Monday, July 26, 2010

The Boathouse, Harefield to Uxbridge.

Hi Friends.

We have left the Boathouse, Harefield after a fantastic weekend. Thank you to Dave, Roger, Ed, Tim and everyone, who made us feel so welcome. Keith enjoyed catching up with the people he knew from his day's working on Pisces at the end of the 60's and early 70's. The photo below is of Keith and Tim Snowden, talking about the old days.
Pisces 75th Birthday Party went very well, with lots of people popping in to wish her a Happy Birthday.
The Bar-B-Q was busy and the drink was flowing for many hours.
We are now moored above Uxbridge Lock having done 4.1miles, 4 locks, in 2hrs 25mins this morning . We are looking forward to spending a couple of days here to go shopping and I hope to get my hair cut, if the price is right. Keith also wants to go down to the chandlery to buy some oil, so we can give Hadar an oil change. The weather seems to have taken a downward turn as it has been raining on and off. So we may not go too far this afternoon.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Happy Birthday Pisces.

Hi Friends.

Having worked hard for a couple of days with Dave, getting the Boathouse ship shape for Pisces 75th Anniversary. We moved Hadar over the canal and moored alongside Pisces, which meant a lot to Keith to see Hadar and Pisces moored side-by-side.
Yesterday afternoon the festivities kicked off, with a Bar-B-Q and lots of drink flowing. Keith enjoyed catching up with some faces from the past. Lots of memories were dragged kicking and screaming into 2010, as they recalled things from way back when. A good time was had by all as we wished Pisces a Happy Birthday with a glass of Champagne. Here's to another 75 years.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Rickmansworth to above Coppermill Lock, Harefield.

We are now moored at Coppermill, Harefield opposite where Pisces moors, having done just 2.3 miles, 2 locks, in 1hr 45mins. Our first port of call this morning was Tesco's at Rickmansworth. We then set off for Coppermill. Once there and moored up we made our way over to the Hillingdon Narrowboat Association Boathouse onboard Pisces, which came across the canal to pick us up, and were immediately welcomed by Dave Wright, who owns Lupin FMC. We have offered our services for a few days to get the place ship shape for the Pisces party at the weekend, but before we got started, Dave cooked us a fab breakfast. I then got stuck into some painting, whilst Keith did some weeding. Keith was given the opportunity this afternoon to take Pisces up to just below Springwell lock, and back again to her mooring, brought back a lot of memories for him, from his days as a 15 year old working Pisces, especially reversing her back to the Stink 'ole to wind her. If only Hadar reversed like Pisces, but that was the unique thing about the original Star class boats. Having spent the afternoon with horses, we were back at base again and a well earned beer was at the top of the list of things to do. So Dave poured us all a beer, whilst tales from the past were bought up. It has been the most wonderful day. Tomorrow we are going to do it all over again.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Cassiobury Park to Rickmansworth.

Hi Fellow Bloggers and Readers.

We are at Rickmansworth, having done 4.1 miles, 7 locks, in 3hrs 20mins.
It was a fabulous morning for moving. We did not find anyone to share with until we reached Batchworth Lock, where Jeff and Lynda on NB Solace were waiting for us. Sadly that was where our journey was to end for the day. Because having left the lock and said cheerio to them once more, we filled up with water and emptied the cassette, found a mooring and then went into town for lunch at one of our favourite chinese buffets Tangs, 2nd cheapest we know, at £5 a head, not bad. and always yummy.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Fishery Inn, Boxmoor to The Grove, Cassiobury Park Watford.

We are now moored near The Grove, Cassiobury Park Watford, having done 6.2 miles, 12 locks, in 4hrs 10mins. The Grove is the ancestral home of the Earl of Essex. During the building of the Grand Junction Canal, the Earl at that time insisted on the ornate bridge 164 being built, rather than the standard canal bridge, it being his main entrance to the estate, and he wanted the canal to look more like a river, hence the 4 bends, 2 either side of the bridge.
Today we were fortunate to share the cruise and the locks with Marjorie, David and Eric on NB Constable and a good time was had by all. We are now moored up behind Barbara a fellow facebooker. It is always nice to put faces to names.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Berkhamsted to Fishery's Inn, Boxmoor.

Having left Berkhamsted on our own this morning, we are now at The Fishery Inn, Boxmoor, 3.2 miles, 11 locks, 3hrs 50mins. We wanted to moor at The Three Horses at Winkwell, but not deep enough, it was last year!

So we had a quick bite to eat and were about to set off through the Winkwell Swing Bridge when we saw NB Solace with Lynda and Jeff on board coming down through the second of the Winkwell Locks. I went and enquired as to whether they were going on down through the locks or mooring up and they said they were going on down, so I said if they did not mind sharing with us, we would join them. So we ended up going further than planned, but now have a nice shady mooring for the rest of the day. It was nice to meet Jeff and Lynda and I am sure we will see them again.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Meeting fellow bloggers.

Hi Friends.

Over the years that we have been blogging, we have got to meet and greet many new friends who are also fellow bloggers. This morning we welcomed onboard Dave Winter who writes a blog and also reads lots of boaters blogs. Dave contacted us via the blog and asked if he could come and say hello whilst we were in Berkhamsted, which we were only to happy for him to do. Dave has a dream of eventually buying a boat and living on the water. My advice to Dave is to never give up with that dream. Keith had that same dream many, many years ago and he fulfilled his dream, and I came along for the ride. Dave if your reading this, it was wonderful to meet you and thank you for the gifts. The cream scones were absolutely yummy.

We have enjoyed our stay in Berkhamsted and will probably stop here again on our return journey.

After Dave left us, we got on with some brass cleaning inside and out. I also gave the boat a wash down.

There have been lots of boats moving today in both directions, which has helped to keep the water level up. Yesterday evening it went down to the point, where we were listing quite badly. This was all due to a boat coming up through the lock below and they left both bottom paddles up and one of the top paddles as well, so water was flowing freely. This was not good for us or any of the other boats moored on the pound. Keith went up to the Gas Locks to let some water down, to find that the boater had wound the bottom paddles at these locks too, fortunately without leaving one of the top ones open. I can only hope they did not do it all the way up the locks. Anyway we are back on the level again today, so all is well.

We will be off tomorrow morning for a new destination.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Beggars Lane Wharf on the Tring cutting, to Berkhampsted.

Having had a rock and roll night with the strong winds. We have made it to Berkhamsted, 3 miles, 7 locks, 2hrs 30mins, and we will be here for the weekend now. We spent a pleasant morning cruising down the locks with Neil on NB Slow and Easy. Going to enjoy a nice weekend looking around Berkhamsted.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Bottom of Marsworth Pair to Beggars Lane Wharf on the Tring cutting.

We have been living onboard and cruising on Hadar for 3 years and 1 day..... Yippee.

Is now moored at Beggars Lane Wharf on the Tring cutting, 4.3miles 9 locks 3hrs 10mins. It has been a very windy morning coming up through Marsworth Flight, but nicely sheltered in the cutting now.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Linslade to the bottom of the Marsworth Pair

Hi Folks.

We are now moored below lock 37, Marsworth pair, 8.7 miles, 10 locks, 5hrs 40mins. Rain was promised and although we had a few spots on route, the heavy rain forecast seems to be finding it hard to let go. Some of the pounds were a little low, so rain really is needed.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Fenny Stratford to Globe Inn, Linslade

Hi Folks.

We spent a lovely day at Fenny Stratford. We walked into Bletchley and did some retail therapy and had a quiet evening on the boat, watching a DVD.
We have now arrived at The Globe Inn Linslade, 6.3 miles, 5 locks, 3hrs 25mins, we moored up, went inside the pub for lunch and the heavens opened! Now that is what I call good timing. We had a lovely cruise, but did have problems at the Soulbury 3 locks, because Hadar got grounded going into the 2nd lock due to a very, very low pound. Having allowed some water down, we were underway again and the rest of the jaunt was uneventful.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Milton Keynes to Fenny Stratford.

Hi Folks.

We said cheerio to Pam and Mac on NB Mona Lisa, before we set off . We managed to get to Fenny Stratford, 3.7miles 1hr 30mins, just as the rain started to fall heavily, excellent timing.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Cosgrove to Milton Keynes.

We are now moored near Gulliver's Milton Keynes, 7.1 miles, 1 lock, 3hrs 15mins. We will be here for the weekend now. We met the fleet of 7 working boats travelling from Paddington to Atherstone carrying gravel, trust us to meet them at a bridge 'ole!
We hope the rest of their journey is uneventful.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Stoke Bruerne to Cosgrove.

We have had a really lovely cruise to Cosgrove. 6.2miles, 7 locks, 3hrs 25mins. With wonderful weather and a pretty quiet canal, it has been a great day. We stopped at bottom Stoke Bruerne lock for some gas from Jules on Towcester, we got to have a brief chat before continuing on our way. We saw Robin and Laura on Miss Matty in passing as well, just as we came into Cosgrove. Now we are having a coffee, with the doors and windows open to a strong cooling breeze.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Bugbrooke to Stoke Bruerne.

We arrived at Stoke Bruerne yesterday after a non eventful cruise. Well pretty much uneventful. We had lunch at Spice of Bruerne, which was very nice indeed. We can totally recommend it, if you like Indian food. The last time we ate there was a year ago. After lunch we set up shop of all Keith's rag rugs, and the bits and pieces we have to sell, and we sold a few bits, not bad for a first time.

Monday, July 05, 2010

Onward to Bugbrooke.

We have now moved on to Bugbrooke. Did a small shop in the village shop, just salad stuff whilst it is still too hot to cook. We will be looking like rabbits soon, after all this lettuce. Been a long hard slog of 2 miles in 1hr 5mins (only joking). Pulled into the moorings and Hadar rode over something large, which sent us careering back out into the channel! Whatever it is, it is big and solid and just behind Hadar's stern.

This is as far as we are going today.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

High House.

Hi Folks.

Last night we had a beautiful sunset, over the top lock at Braunston. Unfortunately this photograph does not do it justice.

We are now moored at High House, having done 9 miles, 7 locks, in 5hrs 50mins. We are moored near where our friends David and Elaine on NB Patience moor.

Our morning began at 7.30am with an early cruise through Braunston Tunnel.

When we came out of the other side of the tunnel, Elaine and David were moored up with a gearbox issue. We pulled in just in front of them and realised that the ground was moving.

On closer inspection we saw dozens of tiny Froglets all making for the woods and the damp ground. It was a matter of watching where we put our feet.

Keith helped David sort out the issue with the gearbox and we were both soon on our way. Buckby Locks do not get any easier, but with some boats coming up, it did save a bit of the work.

Being a Saturday and sunny, there were lots of boats, which included the hire fleet from Gayton Junction. One such hire boat came past us, with its occupants dressed as Pirates. What got my attention even more though was the lady sitting on the back counter with her legs hanging over the edge, and her feet in the water. I shouted to her to get her feet out of the water and her legs in. This was a serious accident waiting to happen and yet she seemed totally oblivious to the dangers. Hopefully with us having pointed the danger out, she will not do that again on her boating holiday.

So here we are at High House and the only mooring available was under trees with low hanging branches. Having moored up, we got the loppers out and did a bit of gardening. The trees have now had a hair cut. At least we will not hear the branches rubbing on the roof all night. With jobs and lunch done, we walked round and had a cold drink with Elaine and David and are now back onboard Hadar watching the football.

We will probably stay here until Monday and then make a move.

Friday, July 02, 2010

Back to Braunston.

We are back at Braunston top lock again, 5.75 miles, 3hrs. We travelled up through the locks with our friends David & Elaine on nb Patience.
Elaine and David moored up behind us overnight. It was absolutely wonderful to see them again. We were cruising down to Stratford-upon-Avon with them this time last year. Like all good boaters we had a good old natter, and caught up on all their news. So this morning we thought we my as well cruise together up the locks. The rain has now stopped and the sun is now out yayyy. Elaine and David will tell you, that when ever they do Braunston Locks, it always rains.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

A Country View.

Hi Folks.

What another glorious day.

I went and got a few salad bits from the shop in Braunston and some bacon from the Butchers. Keith went to the Chandlery to get some boat bits as well. We then decided to leave the Braunston Stop House moorings and head out into the countryside up the joint Grand Union - Oxford Canal. As we left a gentleman on the bow of NB Constance said "Hello, I read your blog". I thanked him and we went on our way. If the gentleman on NB Constance is reading this posting, it was lovely to briefly meet you. Thank you for reading our diary. Maybe next time we meet, we will get longer to chat. All our readers are very important to us. So thank you for taking the time to pop in and read our diary.

So we are now out in the countryside and it is truly sublime. Stunning views and lots of birdsong.

Between Bridges 105 and 107 on the Oxford Canal, we spotted this heifer grazing on the bushes. Your think aww how lovely. The problem with this was she was grazing out on the towpath. On the offside there were cows grazing in the field, so we think she may have swum across the canal. At any rate I rang the BW quick response team number and they were going to send someone out to find the cows owner.

We winded at bridge 107 and headed back along the canal to moor near bridge 102, the Flecknoe road bridge, 7.4 miles 4hrs. This will be our home for a couple of days, as we have boat jobs to do.
We are moored behind Tug Hector, the 2nd boat that Roger Fuller built back in 1986. The last time we saw her she had just been bought by her present owners Daisy and Paul, and they still love her, which is great news. Tug Hector has had a few changes made to her inside and she is looking lovely. Whilst we were nattering to Daisy and Paul, Graham on the Ecover boat Tia, pulled in to refill my Ecover bottles for which I am grateful. I had been hoping to do this for sometime. I got to have a few words with Graham, before he was off on his way home. No doubt we will see him again sometime.

So all is well with our world and we will enjoy this mooring and the digital TV signal we have. Murray is level in sets with Tsonga, so come on Murray, give us Brits something to cheer about.

Right I am off to make yet another salad for dinner.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Braunston Historic Boat Rally

Hi Folks.

I am not going to mention the football, because I realise that there maybe some very depressed people reading this post at the moment. So I will cheer you up with a few photographs from the 8th Braunston Historic Boat Rally.

There were 94 historic boats at this years event. Which is a record. The event organisers were also fortunate with the weather, it was sweltering on both days, which brought out the public and made for some great photographs.

We had the most wonderful weekend, even though we were not taking part as we are not historic, although we are a working boat. Hadar was moored above the locks in the peace, quiet and shade, which was ideal for Paddy and Marmite. It just meant we had a bit of walk.

Keith took part in one of the boat parades. Two were held each day. The first at 11am and the second at 2pm. Keith managed to get a lift on Tom Hill's boats Archimedes and Ara. Keith was in his element.

Our weekend was made all the better, because we got to meet lots of fellow Bloggers and Facebookers. It is always wonderful to put faces to names. So a huge thankyou to everyone who came and spoke to us. It was lovely to see you all. It was also wonderful to see old friends. Some who had travelled quite a way to come to the Rally. If you have never been to the Braunston Historic Boat Rally, make sure you come next year, because it is a fantastic event. The atomosphere is amazing, as are the people you get to chat too.

Today has been a bit of a let down after such a wonderful weekend. But I think we both needed a rest after all the walking we had done.

We polished the boats brass and waited for Tom and James to come with some diesel.

They duly arrived during the afternoon to fill Hadar's tanks. Whilst she was filling up, I supplied the lads with drinks and the usual boaters talk got underway. Tom and James were heading back to London, so we hope they have a good trip. Tom's boats Archimedes and Ara look brilliant now they have been painted up, they are a credit to Tom.

With the day almost at a close, we are looking forward to a goodnights sleep, before setting off down the locks in the morning.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Horse Boating in the sun.

Good afternoon.

I have spent a fabulous morning taking photographs of the 'Butty' Angel being legged through Braunston Tunnel and then the butty was pulled along by a beautiful horse named Gypsy Queen. It was so wonderful to see. It made me ponder about how they used to do boating all those years ago.
It took the leggers about an hour and half to leg through Braunston Tunnel, all 2042 yards, 1867 metres. They certainly needed their weetabix this morning.
Gypsy Queen pulled the Butty Angel out of the lock and on to the next lock down the flight. There is something so majestic about this form of transport. It would have been so peaceful on the cut in those days.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Crick to Braunston.

We are now at the top lock Braunston, 8.5miles, 7 locks, 4hrs. We have had a lovely run through Crick Tunnel and down Watford Locks then on through Braunston tunnel. It was a fantastic mornings cruising, in the lovely sunshine. Surprized the moorings above Braunston top lock are empty, so we are now here till the weekend and the Historic Boat Rally.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Foxton to Crick.

Hi Folks.

Brrrrrrrr it has been more like Autumn today than Summer. Both Keith and I had to don our donkey jackets to keep out the chilly Northerly breeze. The sun did put in an appearance, but was not warm enough to make us take our jackets off.

Some of the views across the countryside along this 20 mile pound are stunning. We enjoyed 17 miles of scenery today and loved every moment of it.

We met Ben on NB Primrose Time on moorings above Foxton Locks, he was heading back to Market Harborough and his mooring. We met our first boat of the day NB Sarah D at 9.30 am and after that there was a steady stream of boats coming out of Yelvetoft and Crick Marina's for the weekend. There were plenty of stationary boats, some not holding up-to-date licences I hasten to add. We cruised past the home and stables of Piggy French. She has a beautiful property, but until today we did not know it was her place.

We were just about to cruise past Kilworth Marina, and saw that they were just about to let the Dayboat out. Luckily they waited until we passed them by.

After Bridge 33, we met in passing NB Margin, who told us that he reads our blog. It is always lovely to meet up with people, who take time out to come in and read about our life and adventures. So hello to the gentleman on NB Margin, hopefully the next time we meet, we may get to exchange names and a few words.

I could not resist taking this photo of a floating garden in progress, or is it purely a weed hatch-er?? Heading towards Crick we passed the new Yelvetoft Marina, who is selling diesel for £1.19 a litre any advance on £1.19? The Marina looked pretty empty. Either the boats are out, or they are still trying to fill it. It is in a lovely area and has all the facilities. Having met every man, woman and their dog moving, it was nice to arrive at Crick and find a mooring. We will be staying here till Monday.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Up, Up and moor up.

Hi folks.

Is now at the top of Foxton locks, 1 miles, 10 locks, 1hr 30mins.

Having been awake since 6am, Keith and I enjoyed an early cuppa in bed, before getting up and preparing Hadar for the off. The plan was to get up the locks early, which also seemed to be the plan of others, because as we arrived at the lock, there was a boat already going into the bottom lock. So having sat Hadar on the gates, I walked up to find the lock keeper. He informed me that we were 4th in the queue, which was a surprize to me because there was no one waiting at the bottom. Apparently I was passed by a gentleman running up the towpath, who was going up the flight third, if he was quick enough to get rid of his rubbish. Flippin cheek.
As it actually turned out, the boat in second place, said that we should go before them, as it would be easier. Which was really very nice of them. So thank you to the crew of Mutley. They very kindly helped me do the first few locks, which gave us a chance to have a nice chat. It turned out that they are good friends of Jo and John on Acen, who we also have go to know, since being in Market Harborough Basin. So we had a nice quiet run up through Foxton locks. Once above the locks Keith moved some more coal around in the hold to get the bow up a bit, he also restacked all the toilet blue and kindling. Hold looks all neat and tidy now. I mopped out the front locker, the gates at Foxton are leaking lots, and with such force it bounced off the fore deck and up under the hatch. There was a good inch of water in the locker. I have got most of it out, but as I am trying not to overdo it with my shoulder, I did not get it completely dry.
We have enjoyed a chat with other boaters moored near us and had our lunch. We are now watching the Germany v Serbia World Cup match on a digital signal, so all is good with our world today.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

A little Gem

Hi Folks.

It has been the most beautiful morning here at Foxton. The sun was shining bright and early, with the temperature rising, as the hours crept by. Having walked his Lordship P early, we got to have a good run out across the field and I saw this little gem.
The flower is a Monkey Orchid and was the only one there. It is a real beauty. P was of course oblivious of this little gem, all's he was interested in was the rabbit holes.