Today we left Hemel Hempstead and moved on to Berkhamstead to look for a suitable mooring to meet up with James and Ali on Friday. This was a mere nine locks and 3 miles away. Storm worked the locks today while I steered and this gave him a chance to walk Max between locks which were spaced at regular intervals.
Max came back onto the boat while Storm operated Winkwell Swing Bridge – a road bridge. Our BW key operates the bridge control panel giving us the power to operate traffic barriers and unlock the bridge so that it swings clear of the waterway. We’ve had no problem with this bridge but we understand that the same day we passed through it on our way to London it developed a fault and I’d like to say it was nothing to do with us and it seemed to be OK today too.
We moored up below Rising Sun Lock. The water in the pound was low so we left our ropes slack so that the boat stood more chance of staying afloat if the water levels changed. As boats travelled up through the lock ahead of us, the water would rise. We stayed on board for a while to make sure that the water levels didn’t worsen before we left the boat to walk ahead to see what access to the canal was like. There are plenty of 14 day moorings in Berkhamstead, unfortunately most of these were occupied. We decided to stay put for today and review moorings in the morning.
The Rising Sun pub came recommended to us and as it was a hot afternoon we decided to sample the beer there. We shall add this to our recommended list of canal side pubs as it had a good selection of real ales and it hadn’t been given the Farrow & Ball paint makeover and was quite quaint! In fact it was so nice, we returned later in the evening.