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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, 28 August 2015

Peacocks, crocodiles and caterwauling........whatever next!

Not sure why we woke early but in away I'm so glad we did. Felt more like an Autumnal morning with the mist rising and the distinctive chill in the air.

By 9ish we were ready to leave and had hoped for a clear passage. Not to be as over night more Pennywort had crept along with the flow and blocked the channel. So back to Ian as fender offer and me at the helm in stealth mode once again.

The junction wasn't far and before we knew it we were doing the left turn and heading for Uxbridge. Stopping before Cowley lock we did the toilety thing but didnt bother filling with water. Then a boat came past and we knew we were in luck. Love it when the lock is set ready for us.

Hardly any boats on the move, just line upon line of moored boats. In fact nearly 2 miles of going at tick over meant it took an age to reach Uxbridge lock. Thankfully above lock was much better so we could give FS a bit of a run.

Uxbridge lock to the left

Got to Denham Deep lock and wondered how we were going to get onto the landing. So many boats along the towpath side and nearly right up to the lock including a floating dry dock. Only place to get off was on the offside. Bollards were visible.....just...but the grass and overhanging Sloe bush made life a little difficult.

The big boat in the center with a narrowboat next to it ( blue rim round it's edge) is a floating dry dock!
By the time we reached Black Jacks Lock it was gone 1pm. Towpath looked decent for a BBQ so, even though it was a tad difficult to get right into the side, we moored. I went for a walk and came across these.

Peacock seen near Black Jacks Lock

And a Peahen followed in his wake. Not something seen on the canals every day!

And also lording it over his territory  and hoping the rabbit would make a nice snack was this Crocodile! The things folk do to bring attention to themselves eh!!!

Hadnt long been back and was debating whether to bring the rod out when an awful sound reached our ears. It came from one of the residential boats opposite. The booming and caterwauling from the so called music of today was horrible. It was that loud that we could stand it for only 30 minutes before upping stakes and heading away. This meant going above Black Jacks lock but oh a much better mooring, deeper water so we cold get into the side and NO noise!!!!

BBQ is still on the cards and in away it means we wont disturb anyone as we could have done below lock. So all in all it's a win win situation.

As I heard water running I had a walk to the bridge. Turns out it was a weir so I'm pretty convinced that we must be on the River Colne. Too much water running over the weir for it not to be a river in my opinion.. Be interested to find out if I'm correct.

Nice spot for a BBQ
And seen on my walk.

Common Hawker

Common Backswimmer

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