Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Back to the Grand Union

Got to Northampton OK and did some shopping. Then it was onwards and upwards on the Northampton Arm with its 17 locks. Just like at Foxton, this flight of narrow locks also links two wide navigation systems. The first obstacle was an abandoned boat moored on the lock landing. Being unable to secure by the lock our boat decided to swing round in the wind nearly hitting another abandoned boat on the other side! One boat at a time now so once No Problem had gone through it was our turn. Into the open lock, shut the gates behind and up we go. The top gates won't fully open because a car wheel with tyre had got in the way! A large digger is busy pulling out a lot of rubbish. The largest item so far removed was a lorry axel complete with both wheels. The next lock was opened by a crew busy dredging out dirty black mud. Having got through the lock we waited for a boat load of the black dirty mud to come by. Another digger further up was busy filling a boat with black mud and more of 'the unwanted'. The lower mile or so of this canal has not been dredged for many years, but at least they are trying to clean it up now.

We soon caught up with No Problem because they had picked up a huge carpet which jammed round the prop. 'Welcome to the ars* end of this canal. If only we could turn back now'. Much of the lower half of the canal was shallow and narrowed by reed growth. Been on the move for almost 8 hours today and done 20 locks so we rested at the top.

No comments: