Sunday, 19 July 2009

Henley to Sonning Lock


We spent most of the day visiting the Traditional Boat Rally  just down stream but actually north of the town on Fawley Meadow. It was a good show with lots of boats from the Dunkirk Little Ships fleet , several steam boats including President, some very nice slipper launches and lots of highly varnished wooden boats. On land there was a good collection of boat jumble stands and stalls selling things like fenders, lifejackets, waterproof jackets, deck shoes etc. one stand even had an inflatable dingy with ores, and pump, brand new for £10. Mind you I would not have risked crossing the Thames in it. The weather was kind to them this morning, but after lunch we had some very sharp, squally, heavy rain showers, they only last a few minutes but if you wee caught out in them you got wet.

Our mooring fee covered us until 3 pm this afternoon and we arrived back at Harnser at about quarter to and pushed off dead on 3 pm. We had to wait at Marsh lock but after that we were ok until Sonning Lock where the owner of the "wide" narrow boat convinced the lock keeper we would not get in beside him, the lock is 17' 11" wide. Mind you he did have about a foot of fenders down the sides so it may have been tight. We waited for the next locking with a small yacht with no mast. The lock keeper checked our length and said there was a Salter Steamer behind, so could we go right to the front of the lock. The Salter boat got in behind us, but had to pull his bow to one side, I hate to think if we had have been a plastic. Once clear of the lock we moored for the night with the stern about 5 feet from the bank, the little yacht is moored on the outside of us as he draws one meter with bilge keels and could not get anywhere near the bank.

You will find our latest position at

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