Last night dinner and drinks were again taken at The Boat as part of a party of 8 boaters and a good night was had by all. The cost was very reasonable thanks to “Taste Card”.
This morning we woke to a sunny still morning, ideal for boating. It took us some time to say goodbye to everyone and it was gone 11 before we set off. As we cleared the Thrupp Lift bridge we could see a boat coming down the canal behind us, but as you can’t remove the key with the bridge up, we had to close it and let them open it themselves.
The last person to use Shipton weir lock left the bottom paddle up, which was handy for us as we could open the gate straight away, you normally need to draw the paddle and wait for the lock to drain, even if the last boat did come towards you. The water level in the Cherwell was very similar to yesterday with the indicator in the yellow but the measurement gauge at only about +50mm
As we left the lock we met a boat coming down the river so we were able to leave the gate open for him. At the other end of the river navigation there is a fine cast bridge carrying the towing path across the river Cherwell as you cross back onto the canal at Bakers lock. The navigation is actually to the right of the bridge via a 90° bend. By the lock is another level indicator for people coming downstream, as you can see it is still in the green. A notice above the lock on the canal section explains it all and tells boaters what actions they should take. Note it is a BW notice.
A little later on we came upon this boat right across the cut, his stern pin had been pulled out leaving quite a furrow, so ether it was the shared ownership boat we just met, or they went by and just left it floating all over the cut, it didn’t take many minuets to push it to the side and drive his pin back into the ground, it was hanging on his stern rope.
In Lower Heyford one of the houses has a tree house, this use to be a rather splendid affair, but over recent years it has been allowed to deteriorate to the point that maybe now it should be officially condemned.
We did a couple more locks before pulling over just before 5pm on the edge of Somerton Common for the night.
Tonight we dine at nb.Harnser.