Tuesday, December 19, 2006

A cold night, but no frost. At least the cold makes the mud on the towpath a bit stiffer.
Away from Ross bridge at 10:10, in another dull overcast morning. 5 minutes took us to Saddington tunnel, but once again no bats to be seen.

Bat box in Saddington Tunnel

On to Debdale wharf where we both took on fuel, diesel at 45p can’t be passed by. How long for, I wonder now that we have lost the “tax break” for red diesel.

Debdale Wharf

Arrived at the bottom of Foxton Locks at 13:30, and turned on to the Market Harborough arm. With just 5½ miles to go to MH, we expected to be at Union Wharf not long after 15:30.
However BW had other ideas, and the dredging operation between bridges 7 & 8 held us up, not because of restriction on the waterway, but because of the amount of weed disturbed and floating on the surface. I’m sure I saw a duck WALKING across the channel, without getting his a**e wet! Anyway, the debris caused 4 trips down the weed hatch to clear the prop. The water is bl**dy cold!


Floating Weed

We finally reached the wharf at about 16:00, and secured a couple of adjacent moorings. It’s pretty busy here, but we’ll only be staying till Thursday lunchtime, when we’ll move part way back down the Arm, and then return for the weekend.

Union Wharf - In fog

Had a chat with Mo and Vanessa on Balmaha, who we’d last seen at Thurmaston before the protest weekend.

Apart from the problem with the weed, the Arm is very attractive and rural. Lots of kingfishers to be seen. We’ll probably return in the summer, but away from Canaltime changeover days.

Locks none, miles 10

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