Monday, 30 December 2013

'Twas a cold & frosty morning!

The next day after our aborted attempt to get down the Caen Hill Flight the weather was foul so we stayed home. Sunday was better. Rather than rake the family out of be early again (and risk more wrath!) I went to Caen Hill to check that everything was open.
A thick hoar frost covering Constance
With the family alerted to the OK, it was time to get the fire going before setting off. I set the first couple of locks in my favour and started the engine with the first click of the starter. Good stuff that 'Cetane Enhancer'.
Still a thick frost - on the way down
I managed to do at least 4 locks on my own before the family caught up with me. From then on it was a lot easier. I was able to stay on board and let the others set the locks and open/close the gates. It was a lot safer too.
With the day's work done - a quick look back up the Caen Hill Lock Flight
Beautiful sunshine all day even though it was cold. That is quite a magnificent view, looking up the lock flight. I am amazed at the perfect alignments and spacings of all the locks.

Nice try!

It was the day after Boxing Day, I had managed to rake the family out of bed nice and early. We were going to take Constance down the Caen Hill lock flight. We took her down to Caen Hill Top Lock only to find it locked with no one in attendance. Nothing on the web, no emails to the contrary, it should have been open. Frantic phone calls to C&RT. After a while a member of the local team phoned back to say 'sorry - closed for the day'. No further information. So we are stopped at top lock for the time being.

Sunday, 22 December 2013

To Devizes

It was one of those lovely sunny late autumn (early winter?) days. I caught buses to Pewsey and then walked to Wilcot. After a quick lunch I started the engine and moved off. It was not long before I passed through the lovely sunny Wilcot Wide Water. I could easily have been tempted to stay there as there was nobody there, it was wonderfully quiet and peaceful. I carried on, however, past Honey Street, the two swing bridges and arrived at 'The Bridge Inn' at Horton just as it was getting too dark to see. Yes, I did venture in for a pint in the latter part of the evening. I was in bed early as I needed to make an early start.
As the weather forecast correctly said, it was fine in the earlier part of the morning and was getting greyer as I neared Devizes.
Devizes Marina
By the time I had emptied the loo at Devizes Wharf and moored on the 72 hour moorings it had started to rain. As the day went on it got worse. By early evening it was blowing a gale and the rain was lashing. Lovely and warm inside!
Next morning it was all calm and sunshine so I moved from the 72 hour mooring down below the wharf.
First lock below Devizes Wharf
Now I can moor with no restrictions (OK - other than the normal 14 day), all I need is spot where the solar panel can see the sun!

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

A change of plans...

For the last few months we have been moving eastwards. I always intended to make for Great Bedwyn and spend the worst of the winter there. Sometime during 2014 I need to get a hull survey done for insurance purposes, I also need to have Constance re-blacked.
I made a casual (on-line) enquiry to Semington Dock to see if they had a time slot over this winter period. February would be good, they said.
So, we have turned round from Pewsey and will now head back towards Devizes. The first part of the journey is to move back to Wilcot before attempting the Long Pound. Then it will be down the Caen Hill flight sometime during Christmas-New Year time.

On to Pewsey for a while

Our move eastwards continues.
Autumn near Wilcot village
From our mooring near to Wilcot village we have moved to Pewsey. We are just off the end of the 48hour moorings. Nice an open for the solar panel to charge the batteries. I visit to do various little jobs, maybe spend the night.