Thursday, 5 February 2015

2 ½ miles there and 2 ½ miles back!

We were hoping to move from here over the weekend so decided yesterday to walk up to Bulbourne to check out if the water was free from ice, setting off at 13:15 ...

Just above Cowroast Lock there is still plenty of ice albeit broken up by a passing boat the day before

Walking along the mud-bath of a towpath was gloopy, slippy and slow but at bridge 135 Tring Station we went up to the public footpath where we could still see the canal and a host of snowdrops too!

 So much pleasanter up here even though the path was rutted with tractor tyre marks
 … and we could see for miles and miles!

 An hour and a quarter later we arrived at Bulbourne, the cutting was clear of ice just bits of cat ice near the bridges and here at the winding hole (turning point for boats). There would be moorings for us below the water point and for Valerie above the water point past the plastic boat.
Walking on we were able to text Jaq and Les that their fuel delivery should take place as planned as ‘Jules’ boats were the right side of the stoppage.
 Bulbourne Junction and the top lock (45) of the Marsworth Flight currently closed “due to a failure on a component of the lock gate.” Yesterday C&RT stated that “ our contractors are currently undertaking design of a temporary support system in order to allow re-opening of the canal under restriction for narrow craft.”  They must be undertaking the design in the warm as there was no-one at the lock when we we there!  This means that even if we do move over the weekend we, as a wide beam will not be able to move through this lock! 'Oh hum’ as Sue would say!
 The Wendover Arm of the Grand Union
 On the walk back George noticed these structures over the field.  We wondered if they were ‘breathing holes’ for something underground - perhaps something to do with the ones Tom describes?

We arrived back at Still Rockin’ at 4pm so 2¾ hours for a 5-mile trek was pretty good going we thought especially as we stopped a few times on the way there to look at the view and take pictures!

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