Thursday, 11 February 2010

Wednesday Aynho to Pigeons Lock

We started a bit earlier this morning at twenty to ten, its was a very bright morning with no sign of ice on the canal. Aynho road bridge is quite low so I removed both stove chimneys and the engine exhaust before setting off, a few years ago I put a good kink in the engine exhaust pipe going through this bridge and I didn't want to repeat it.
Just through Souldern Bridge number 192 the fields were still flooded following the River Cherwell flooding and the shallow water was full of ducks, lots of the Widgeon all whistling  away.At Lower Heyford just below the lift bridge BW are building a flood prevention wall from sandbags between the towing path and the River Cherwell. They are filling the bags at Allen's Lock where they have a cement mixer and a very large pile of sand, they are then stacking the filled bags beside Allen's Lock, so I assume they are transporting them down by boat, but none was in evidence.  Although it was mainly a sunny day we did have some very heavy snow shower and one of these occurred as we passed through Lower Heyford. Negotiating the road bridge by the station is a bit problematic as the boat yard has 3 boats moored stern on, herring bone style with there bows well out into the channel right in the mouth of the bridge, that and a boat moored on the towing path side makes it almost impossible to get through the bridge without rubbing the moored boat, the towpath under the bridge or the bows of the boats. During the winter months the hire base just doesn't seem to have enough room to moor all their boats including the ones they are fitting out. Once through the bridge we stopped to top up with water still in the driving snow. By the time the tank was full the snow had stopped and we were on our way again.
At Dashwood Lock 2 BW men had just completed cleaning under the bottom gate as they had received a report that it wouldn't swing. We had just met a boat so expected the lock to be full, but when we arrived BW had just drained it to check the gate was now OK and refilled it for us as we approached. Whilst talking to them, one of them spotted a heard of deer on the hill side, there must have been about 20 of them including one that was snow white. As you approach Pigeons Lock the market garden/tea rooms on the left now has a collection of fowl in multi coloured wooden houses and runs. The cock bird in the first enclosure had the most magnificent head dress and looked if he was straight from the rain forest, I will try for a photo on our way back. By the time we had worked through Pigeons Lock it was 4 pm so we decided to moor below the lock for the night as there is a decent stretch of piling, as the weather was still nice I reconnected the TV aerial cable, I only cut it through it last January for the boat to be painted. We tried the TV but the picture was rubbish with lots of ghosting so we gave up on that idea.

1 comment:

Wozie said...

Blimey, that is what I'd call prompt attention as I only e-mailed BW yesterday about the problem with Dashwood Lock!
See you soon then.