When we woke this morning someone had been sprinkling icing sugar all over the fields and the water wasn’t moving. This was quite surprising as the lowest temperature I recorded last night was zero.
We were ready to push off just after 10am, by now the water was free of ice opposite the boat but the canal was still covered behind and in front of us so it looked as if we would lose a little black. I had just dropped the ropes off and a hire boat came round the bend behind us, so like a gentleman I let him pass before pulling out and he continued on breaking the ice ahead of us. There wasn’t much and the canal was clear after the next bend. We followed him to Fenny where he winded to return to Kate Boats at Stockton.
I don’t know the official situation with the HS2 rail link, but this notice on the towing path at Wormleighton by bridge 128 gives information on the diversion of the towing path and bridleway for the line construction work to take place.
At Fenny we stopped to fill with water, the water points were a bit busy with 3 boats taking water in all.
We carried on to the Claydon flight where we were pleased to find the top lock full, we had met the second boat of the day a bit earlier. The joy didn’t last as the second and all the rest of the flight were empty, so we had to turn them all. I just rounded the bend below the flight and met a boat coming the other way, if only he had left an hour earlier. As we had met this boat I expected Elkington lock to be full, but no like the rest it was empty, so the boat must have left the Forge moorings.
From here down we found that a lot of the brick pavers were still covered in ice, especially where they were on the slope so a little extra care was required, it was quite warm by now and the sun had been out all day, but in the shade the frost was hanging around.
Cropredy Marina is really filling up now, last time we passed they were just filling the second basin with water, now its almost full of boats.The first basin looks as if it already full. I must say they have had a very good take up, they must be feeling very pleased.
As we approached Cropredy lock we met a narrow beamed Dutch Barge style Narrowboat and then just as we were leaving the lock yet another boat showed up, this was followed by a third as we passed the Cropredy Long Term moorings. I can only thing that they are moorers from the new marina who have been to Banbury for the weekend. If this is the case then finding moorings in Banbury at weekends will become a problem.
We slipped into the first vacant visitor mooring that we came to a few minutes before 4pm, the sun had gone down and it was starting to feel chilly.