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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Friday, 7 August 2015

Looks like the Thames has stopped flowing.

Not a sign of the owl yesterday. I'm starting to believe how lucky we were to see her a week ago. We sat in very windy conditions in the hope that she may put in an appearance. It wasn't to be but it didn't stop us sitting outside enjoying the peace and tranquility. The sunset wasn't the best but at least it meant a good day was on the cards for the morrow. With the clear skies and no light pollution, the sky was full off stars, a wonder to behold.

Listing once again this morning we noticed the lack of flow on the river, almost like being back on the canals. In fact it was a good few inches down from last night. At Eynshem lock we asked the lock keeper why that was. It's all to do with the Farmoor reservoir. Water was being pumped into the reservoir from the river and without significant rain in the foreseeable future, conditions would only get worse. In fact an email from C&RT has put a warning out about low water levels and not just on the river.

Lack of diesel was also getting critical. With less then 20% left in the tank, and Ian not wanting to allow the levels to drop any further, we stopped at Oxford cruisers. At 95p Ltr it was expensive and knowing Abingdon was 10p cheaper, we only topped up by 50Ltrs. Getting to the pump was interesting. Had to breast up with a cruiser. Glad there was no flow and no wind blowing today 'cause we may have damaged their hull.

 In desperate need of supplies we decided to make a detour along Dukes Cut and head into Oxford along the canal.

What a wake up call. Having spent months on various rivers, we now had to mind our speed and slow down to tickover past the boats. Loads of boats on the approach to Oxford, reminiscent of the K&A Devices section. And once more we had tree growth to contend with. The willows hung over the canal like curtains obscuring our views quite considerably and small branches tried removing everything loose from the cabin top.

Very surprised to see the Oxford moorings nearly empty. Wanting the sun on the solar panels we picked a sunny spot opposite the hire fleet College Cruisers. Will stop for tonight and maybe find a wetherspoons for tonight's dinner, then tomorrow through Isis lock and back onto the Thames.

Hardly any boats moored.

And my good deed for the day.
A cricket rescue........twice from a watery grave.

1 comment:

michael pidoux said...

Yes - was at Marlow today, and zero movement towpath side, plus about 0.2mph the other side. Was astonished. Never seen anything like it.
Michael Pidoux (Ealing)

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