Monday, 24 June 2013

What's happened to the boat - it's not where we left it!!

Sunday 23rd June to Monday 24th June 2013

Windy, occasional rain, coldish – not a great day to go cruising – so we didn’t.

We had wanted to venture just down to Sandon – Diane had something on her mind to do with a Sunday roast at The Dog and Doublet – sorry dear, it was not to be.

We did however manage to see how the conditions affected the boat trying to reverse into position as we watched Jo and her acquired crew on nb Gentle Presence attempt the tricky manoeuvre – 2nd time lucky and well done I say.

There was another reason for wanting to cruise – we still needed to check on the engine after the work done on realigning the shaft – we still were not sure if it would or wouldn't shudder under load.

But we had to wait – Diane assured me that the weather was due to be better on Monday and even better on Tuesday – OK we waited.

Monday morning arrived and the wind had subsided quite a lot – no rain either – so it was decision made.

We headed out of the marina – we knew it was only for one night and back tomorrow, but it felt good to be moving – 2 weeks was a bit long at this time of the year. The shuddering had not disppeared, but not as bad as previously - a little bit fixed and a bit unfixed.

A little over 2 miles and we winded so that the other side of the  boat could be washed, cut and polished (by the good lady wife – got to keep her working hard).

I didn’t take it easy – I resumed work from where I had left off earlier.

We had to moor up on pins and the ground was a bit soft but firm – a procession of boats passing by – not going fast, but could have been slower, gradually worked away and one of the pins came loose and out – it was re-established in a firmer place and we put a third pin for the centre line as a precaution.

Diane had decided that the afternoon tea at The Dog and Doublet would be our treat for the hard work and so it was lovely to sit in comfy chairs and not concern oneself with what was happening elsewhere – perhaps we should have though!!

For anyone who knows the little walk from the lock to The D&D, it can be a bit tricky – no path in places and cars from both directions carefully avoiding pedestrians – but we made it there and back.

I didn’t mention it to Diane but as we were walking back I could see the boat and it appeared to be out of position.

As we made the bridge we could see why – it was on the other side of the canal amongst the reeds.

Through a farm field and over the barbed wire fence, through the nettles and overgrown undergrowth (does that sound right) – I got close to the boat but 2 metres is not something that I was capable of leaping in a single bound from standing - at least not without my cape and undies on the outside.

Diane flagged down a boat coming out of the lock and the man on the back – new owners of nb Muriel Alice landed her onto Ferndale with ease. Like the experienced boaty that she has become – she hauled in the ropes and earthless pins, started the engine and directed it back to the towpath side where I was now waiting.

Relatively quickly she was moored up again (Ferndale not Diane) and everything in order. We used a length of rope already attached to the canal side and also the concrete blocks to make sure it wouldn’t move again with ease.

Let me say that this was not a case of someone passing by and being mischevious, it was more our own fault of not making sure enough of the pins being securely in place; but in the end all is well; no husbands were harmed in the movement of the boat; and the dog was safe and sound.

2 miles

Totals: 1848 Miles, 1382 Locks, 60 Tunnels, 29 Lift Bridges, 139 Swing Bridges


  1. Oh dear - thank goodness it was (relatively) easily remedied. You wouldn't want to meet an out of control narrowboat drifting down the canal, would you? Especially your own one.

  2. Hi Jenny and Robin
    It's a bit of an experience to see the boat not where it should be - i had envisaged taking a cold dip to get to it, but with that sight there woul have been a lot of people feelin very sorry for Diane - alls wel that ends well

  3. Oops - that happened to us when we were on the Ashby Canal last year but some kind boater had already rescued it before we returned. Glad that Banjo and the boat are OK :)

  4. Malcolm Richardson25 June 2013 at 15:24

    Use four pins and fore and aft spring lines. Should stop the boat moving about with passing craft and offer 'insurance' moorings. Need more news and pictures of Banjo.

  5. Hi Dot
    It was just a funny experience to see the boat over the other side of the canal and not easy to get to.

  6. Hi Malcolm
    Your are right about the extra pins - my own silly fault for not doing it the first time or even the second time - but for sure it will be the next time.
    Note taken about Banjo - he is doing well for a dog his age