When we moored up last night one of the GOBA mooring signs was well covered in undergrowth, so this morning I set to with the shears and cleaned things up a bit. I was going to put a self tappet to hold the ally sheet back to the frame, but when I looked closely it was a bit beyond that with the ally bent and the print delaminating.
|As Found||Well bent|
|As left after a clean up|
It was a nice sunny morning but a biting wind, unlike yesterday afternoon, so it was insulated overalls again and more cold remedies. We had a slight problem at Hemingford Lock, there is a sand bar three quarters of the way across the river below the lock running out from the lower end of the lock landings. You could well ask how do I know, well I went hard aground and was surprised how far to the left I had to go to clear it. Luckily the gates were open because I would have had great problems putting anyone ashore without them climbing the railings (Its an EA thing, all locks enclosed by railings). Once in the lock there is a nice little drawing showing the sand bar, by now I knew thank you. There is also a notice saying there are navigation buoys. No there’s not!
|Diagram showing sand||Notice about buoys|
That out of the way we carried on up stream with the rest of the lock against us for the morning. We met a couple of hire cruisers and a Narrowboat from Ely and also the St John’s trip boat running down empty.
Passing through Godmanchester we spotted an ex-offshore survival craft, these are over engineered mechanically, very heavy glass resin hulled and well maintained whilst in service. They spend a majority of there life hanging on a pair of davits, go in the water a few times a year but with no windows are very claustrophobic and very limited visibility. I don’t think I would want one like this on the inland waterways. As we passed through Godmanchester they are still well into the flood prevention schema which seems to have been going on for a year and the disruption to the residents must be horrendous. They are setting a reinforced concrete wall into the ground and then ether banking it up or face brickwork finishing all the way along between the houses and the river starting just above the A14 and going up above Godmanchester lock. It is claimed it will reduce the risk of flooding from 1 in 20 years to 1 in 100 years and is expected to cost £6.8M and take 3 years to complete.
Once through Godmanchester lock we backed down to the town basin to post some mail and have lunch. Once upon a time there was an EA visitor mooring right by the lock in the entrance to the basin but the EA closed it as being unsafe, they were right, the whole lot has now fallen into the water and the town visitor moorings are not far behind. Maybe they will build some new ones in the flood defence system with a bit of luck.
After lunch we we set off a bit further upstream, by now the wind was gusting 25mph even though it was over 7°C it didn’t feel very warm. We turned up the narrow semicircular channel to Brampton Lock, this is now also very badly silted on the inside of the bend. I was very pleased to find the lock ready as in this wind it would have been a so and so to have got back off the lock landing. We pushed on a short way to the GOBA moorings at Mailers Meadow where we have moored for the night