Friday morning before 8am we were ready to rock n roll.
The roof of Still Rockin' is covered in tiny petals from the flowers of the lime tree under which we were moored as we pull away from the bank.
Looks like a planning meeting at Thames Valley Park on Dreadnought Reach, there are regattas happening over the next couple of weekends
Passing the Thames and Kennett Marina and rowing lakes on our right
On our left are a group of boats moored where they shouldn't be, some of which used to be illegally moored on the Tesco shopping mooring.
The boats had been moved off the old pontoons outside Tesco at Reading ...
so that a new pontoon could be installed over the winter and fortunately they haven't moved back ... yet.
New mooring signs have been installed and some defaced. New charges are (£9.50) for up to 24 hours with no free mooring at all. A real shame that boaters who use moorings responsibly can't stop for a few hours to do a Tesco shop. I understand that the council are reconsidering.
On our right opposite Tesco is this old wooden boat which has been there at least seven years as we know to, and still looks as if it's being lived on. It would probably fall to pieces if you tried to move it.
Approaching Caversham Lock lay-by and I can see that it's on self service ... it's not quite 8:30 yet.
The lock is ready and George is bringing SR in
I wondered if the crow would have actually taken the egg, or caused it to fall from the nest
When going upstream I usually place the bow rope on the roof so that when a lock is on self service and once Still Rockin' is in, I use my trusty pole to reach down and lift the rope up to tie on a bollard so that the boat doesn't wander across the lock as it rises. When the lock is almost full George unties the bow rope and replaces it on the roof, collects the pole and returns to the wheelhouse to exit the lock once the gates are open.
Looking back at Caversham Bridge
Mooring spaces available at Christchurch Meadow and again new mooring signs, again no mooring just £9.50 for up to 24 hours maximum with no return for 72 hours. Reading still does not want boaters!
Friday must be change over day for the Caversham Boat hire fleet
Approaching Caversham Bridge
At 7' Mapledurham Lock is one of the deepest on the Thames
... and there's a queue waiting to come in as we exit, we'll pull over behind them for a special treat ...
a bacon and mushroom bap each from Tea on the Thames situated on the lock ... tasty at any time of day!
Passing through Pangbourne
and bearing right to Whitechurch Lock, the last for today also on self service
Holiday cottages on the far bank as we near our destination at Beale Park, Lower Basildon
The roof gets a sweep
and we settle down to what we know will be a great weekend.