Saturday, July 30, 2016

Good timing for a trip down Foxton

The length of moorings above the locks were fairly full last night, but most of the boats seemed to going south. After Meg’s perambulation and breakfast I had a stroll down to the top lock to see what was happening; there was only one boat in the whole flight and that was just starting down.
So I hastened back, sorted out the boat and we set off after them.
The top arm to the inclined plane heads off to the right. I’m not going to describe the history of the boat lift here, I’ve done so a couple of times in the past so if you want to know more go here.

Mags waits patiently while I fill the top lock after booking in with the lockieIMG_1091

Looking down the flight, a couple of locks down.
That’s the museum in the old boilerhouse, on the right.

More red and white paddles.
We’re going down now, but the principal is the same as at Watford. Red before white… You’ll be alright. White before red… You’ll finish up with an irate lock-keeper!


The two lockies on duty said that they were surprised at it being so quiet. Plenty of gongoozlers, but not many boats. They spoke too soon. There were seven boats waiting to come up by the time we reached the bottom, so they were looking at a busy couple of hours!IMG_1094

We went under Rainbow Bridge and pulled in for water. While the tank was filling I went over to the car park to dispose of rubbish, having to wait for two more boats coming through the swing bridge.

Looking across the junction, boats are starting to move up the flight now.IMG_1098

We passed a couple of boats heading towards the junction as we set off. I hope they were going to Market Harborough, or they’ll have had a lengthy wait!

Past Debdale Wharf the navigation becomes an SSSI, no veg cutting goes on along here, and it shows!

There are some pleasant moorings near where the feeder from Saddington Reservoir joins the canal.
It’s twisty around here, but then straightens out into the cutting leading to Saddington Tunnel.

Although the entrance is a little difficult to see…IMG_1104

We followed a Canal Cruising Club boat, presumably out of Union Wharf, and going very cautiously through the tunnel.

I took pictures of the bat boxes, but didn’t really expect to see a bat. I wasn’t disappointed. Saw a large moth, though.


We planned to moor near Fleckney, it’s 15 minutes across the fields from the canal but there’s a good Co-op there.
There is a short length of piling just past Fleckney Bridge which gives the closest approach to the village, but the preceding hire boat pulled in there… after a bit of a struggle. IMG_1109

Not a problem, though. There is more piling either side of the next bridge, and frankly it’s more pleasant ‘cos there’s less trees. We got in on the first stretch.IMG_1110

We’ve been joined by another boat since we stopped, but, considering how many were milling around at Foxton, it’s been pretty quiet. Ahead of us now stretch the wide locks into Leicester. Maybe that puts folk off who are out on a short trip. Not us, we’re made of sterner stuff!
We’re having a day off tomorrow, however…

Locks 10, miles 4¾

1 comment:

Lisa said...

Reading this makes me homesick... I consider you to be in my back garden!
Send fondest regards to Margaret,
Lisa xx