Wednesday 4 July

We were up and away by 9am.  We moored briefly in Braunston for supplies from the village store and the butchers.  The butcher also does a line in fruit and vegetables and the peaches and strawberries I bought today were delicious.  It’s a long time since I’ve had any so ripe and so sweet.  The steak was on special offer and I was persuaded to buy some for a future BBQ.

Braunston Marina Entrance

Tonight we’ve had beef burgers that I bought in Lidl yesterday and these were as good as any home-made ones.

In Braunston we buddied up with a family from Lincoln and shared the six locks with them, waving them ‘goodbye’ only as we entered Braunston tunnel (2042 yds).  They hate tunnels and asked that we go first as they would be going through slowly after which they would be heading North towards Leicester.  (The last time we went through the Harecastle Tunnel, the tunnel manager had advised that we go through as quickly as we could as this helps you steer a central course).  We motored on through.

Light at the end of the tunnel

Once back out in the sunshine we passed the Swan family and you could almost hear Mum say, ‘heads up,  chests out’ as they swam in unison.

We’d hoped to moor for lunch at the top of Buckby Wharf but all the moorings were occupied so we continued on our way.  We’d just worked our way down the first lock, when a boat came up behind us so we agreed to wait for them and share the next six locks with them.

We encountered an odd assortment of boats heading up these locks as we went down; most of them breasted up to another boat that had seen better days, judging by the amount of tarpaulin covering the roofs or else towing a butty boat.  We got some toothless grins from the skippers!

On the outskirts of Weedon Bec we passed under a new road bridge, currently under construction, to take traffic over both the canal and the railway.

Once clear of Buckby locks we motored on trying to cover as many miles as possible, but with so many boats moored at the edge of the canal we travelled more miles in tick-over than we did at 4mph and ended up mooring at Bugbrooke rather than at Gayton.  13.75 miles and 13 locks covered today.

We’ve to be in London for next Thursday (12th) as we’ve booked to cruise the Olympic Park and meet up with friends.

CRT have announced that they’re planning a two day stoppage at Actons Lock (Lock 7) on the Regents Canal that is due to end at 9pm on the 11th.  We’re hoping to be at that lock by 9pm that night and to travel through so that we can moor for the night as near to the Olympic Park as possible.  Thank goodness we’ve got light nights until late at the moment.  We’re certainly cutting it fine!

This trip isn’t quite the leisurely cruise we’d been looking forward to.  A few very early morning starts are needed to ensure we meet the deadline.  I’m going to set an alarm to make sure this happens.

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