Friday, June 12, 2009

Hemel Hempstead bound

Another bright, sunny, warm day today.
We left our excellent moorings at The Grove Bridge with a certain amount of reluctance. If we hadn’t needn’t to fill with water in the next couple of days we’d probably have stopped here for the weekend. It’s a pleasant spot, and there’s some good walks either side of the canal.

But needs must, as they say, so we were away about 09:40.

A better shot of The Grove Bridge.

Racing golf carts alongside the canal
We were following a couple of boats who’d got up earlier than us, so all the locks, at least until Home Park Lock, were set against us.

Leaving Lady Capel’s Lock
The lock is named for Lady Capel, nee Morrison, daughter of the owner of the Cassiobury Estate. She married in to the Capel family of Essex, and the estate ultimately passed into this family’s holdings. They were very closely associated with Cassiobury Park, and there was also a Lady Capel’s Wharf on the canal, just north of the lock. It’s now an overgrown winding hole.

North Grove Lock must be leaking badly from the chamber into the surrounding ground.
There are cottages either side of the canal, and I imagine that this precaution is to protect their cellars.

We passed under the M25 London Orbital, often called the world’s longest linear car park.

M25 Bridge
Traffic seemed to be moving freely this morning.

Arriving at Home Park Lock we were pleasantly surprised to see the lock open and the boat in front of us waiting. There was also a Reachout Project boat waiting to come down, and I was told to stay on board, so we had a very easy transit.

In Home Park Lock with NB Florrie
We shared the next 3 locks with the couple on NB Florrie, but they left us behind when we pulled in to moor for the night. They wanted to be a bit further out of the town, and must have gone on a fair way, as I didn’t come across them when I walked Meg up the towpath this afternoon.

There’re dragons near Kings Langley…
Sharing Kings Langley Lock
This boat, on the approach to Hemel Hempstead, is well into solar power. Two large panels for electricity and a heat pump for hot water.
He was still running a little generator on the back deck though.

Locks 9, miles 4

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