Thursday, 18 June 2009

Tardebigge for the first time

Thursday 18th June
We had been undecided as to our route northwards but in the end Geoff decided that we had heard so much about the Tardebigge flight that it just had to be done. There are 29 locks altogether but they are all single so I find this much easier. Double locks are fine if you have another boat companion.

Mary and Ivan had arrived the previous day partly to visit us and partly to help. Due to the forecast for Wednesday we decided to delay until early Thursday morning. Good decision as it turned out. Thursday was dry and when we set off at 0730 it was even sunny. The sun did not last and at times the wind which got up was decidedly chilly...however it did not rain on us.

Ivan & Geoff did the first 6 locks and were getting into their stride but then Ivan departed to collect his car and take it to the top. He was back in about an hour and normal service resumed. However one of the first things Ivan did was drop his winch handle in the lock.........there is no retrieving in these circumstances. That makes the second we have lost this year as Geoff left one behind.

It took us 3 3/4 hr to reach the top by which time I could have done with a rest! I had been on the tiller most of the way, although I had surrendered the tiller to Ivan for a few locks as he wanted to see if he remembered how it was done. He coped very well for a pilot!! I was able therefore to do the odd paddle and gate. I did not attempt any of the opening of the top paddles as they are all extremely stiff. I am still suffering with my back and now my walking so did not want to make matters worse. However it was good to have a change of role for a while.

Mary and Ivan left us at the top after unloading their car with all our shopping from the previous days outing to Morrisons. We then continued through the tunnel and on to Alvechurch where we were hoping to meet up with yet more friends!

No comments: