Last night was a very peaceful mooring, we were the only ones there by 7 pm., there were two boats across on the Priory mooring and one of those left after having a Takeaway dinner. The river was virtually dead with next to nothing passing and we enjoyed a takeaway pizza on the front deck with a drop of red wine. It probably wont be so good next week as the fair has started to get set up ready for next weekend.
We saw the top ducks of St. Neots who spent the afternoon sat on the ridge of the Priory Centre.
This morning Diana went shopping while I washed one side of the boat, not before time as its not been done since the middle of last year. The down side to that is I can now see more places where the paint is falling off, it was already to hot to wash the roof. Diana returned fully armed for a BBQ so we will probably get the forecast thunder and lighting this evening.
We were away at 10 30 am. heading down stream, I completely missed the turning to St Neots lock. there is a keep left sign and a no entry sign but i sailed straight by, well it is the same width of the river and the lock channel looks like a back water. I went the 500 yard or so down to the weir and wondered where the lock was, luckily I managed to stop before the line strung across the cut, you can see it just ahead of us. This was followed by a spell of going backwards to the junction and then heading the right way.
St Neots lock is closing TONIGHT for 3 DAYS so that they can fit the new top gear and hang the new gate and counterweight. There will then be another stoppage to remove the old gate after the Jubilee weekend and before July as that is when they lose crane access to the site, so if it fails after that is anyone's guess.
We waited for a Narrowboat to leave the lock, they didn’t know about the closure, the only place I have seen details about it is on the GOBA web site. Once in the lock Diana operated the old gate but it only lifted a few inches so was very slow to drain. After a time she was able to continue lifting the gate which cause the boat to surge forward quit hard, and then back again. I don’t think I would have held it on the engine, I was a bit bothered about the centre rope going through because it was running on the concrete edge. The boat following us who arrived as we were going down, on finding out about the closure tonight changed his mind and went back.
A short way below St Neots lock are the remains of an old lock structure which now make someone a pleasant mooring. This is on the right hand side of the river when going upstream.
We only passed one pair of swans with signets but we did pass an abandoned swan’s nest full of eggs, it had been just like that when we came up. We have met quite a few cruisers this morning and a couple of Narrowboats and we are now moored back on Mailer’s Meadow where we were a few days ago.