Tuesday 15 March 2022

First trip of the season

Today's Canals - Droitwich, Worcester and Birmingham

Our last report was some while ago. We did not spend Christmas and New Year on the boat this time, the first for about ten years.

We did make a very short visit in January but, although we did a few checks and small items of maintenance, it was not the weather to tackle the outside items, especially the paintwork.

But at last we are able to start our cruising year and came over from Devizes this morning. We had been led to believe that we would not be able to get out of our estate after 8 am as the final road works are starting. So we planned around that and were all prepared for a very early start. However, late yesterday afternoon we discovered that the letter we had received only on Saturday was over pessimistic and we would be able to leave whenever we wanted today. So, we still set off early but not quite as early as it might have been. As a result we were at the boat soon after 10 am!

All seemed well and - unlike the past two years - the central heating came on as requested without any need for a series of false starts.

By the time we had unloaded the car, sorted out stowing everything away (even though we only brought enough for the five days planned trip) filled with water etc it was time for a slightly early lunch. Just after 1 o'clock we unplugged the shore line and set ourselves free. 

As we crossed the marina we could see that the pair of swans on the island were just making a start on building this year's nest. Only a few strips of weed had been collected thus far but they looked all set for the Big Build.

We called at the fuel point to fill up. We probably had plenty in the tank for this trip but with fuel prices already at an extortionate level they seem only likely to go even higher.

Time to venture forth and we turned left out of the marina towards the three Hanbury locks. A hire boat from Worcester had just passed on its way up so we had to turn all three and the short middle pounds were very low. Our boat only crept between the locks. 

By the time we reached the top we were well aware of he extent to which boating muscles had atrophied over the winter (despite Mike's intensive garden preparation this last week - more about that another time perhaps). Fortunately we only planned these locks for today.

Just after the locks comes Hanbury Junction where we turned right towards Worcester. This is only a 'shake-down' cruise (us as much as the boat) so we will probably turn around at half time and come back the same way.

It was a pleasant afternoon and for a while quite mild. By the time we arrived at our favoured first overnight stop at Oddingley the temperature was falling quickly and we were glad of the excuse to light the stove. We have even brought our meal from the home freezer so time for taking it easy!

3.3 Miles - 3 Locks

No comments:

Post a Comment