Poor Fras and Toque got dragged out of bed by Di at 7.00am. She was keen to get cruising as it was forecast as another scorcher of a day and we had three hours cruising to get to Aynho Wharf.
There is a lot to be said for being on a canal in the early morning, be you a boater, dog walker, jogger or whatever. It was quiet and still with a crispness to the air and fresh smell, that is, until Farmer Joe started mucking out the milking shed!!
We had forgotten just how difficult many of the entrances are to the narrow locks and you are indeed a skilled boat driver if you can get into the lock without removing any paint work off your hull.
Even for this hour of the morning there were quite a few boaters out and about but most of them were hire boaters who were racing back to get to their hire bases before 9.00am as this is when their rental finished.
As the following videos will explain, this is the deepest narrow lock on the entire canal system coming in at 12 foot.
The following video hopefully gives you a view of the splendid countryside we travelled through this morning from the top of the lock.
We wanted to try and give you some idea as to what the depth of the lock looked like from above.
Last video will demonstrate the turbidity you incur whilst in a lock and what your options are if you fall in of which neither result in a positive outcome.
We arrived into Aynho Wharf at 10.30am just before the day started to heat up. If you look closely you will see a green umbrella in the distance and this is us set up for the searing sun – well as searing as it gets in the UK.
This is the Great Western Pub in Aynho where we booked in for lunch for five people at 1.00pm. We are meeting some very dear friends who are the mum and sister and brother-in-law of friends back in Calgary. We have met up with them now during our last three visits to the UK and it is always such a pleasure to see them each time. They are the kinds of friends you have that if you haven’t seen them for a very long time it is just like picking up from where you left off.
They drove down from Wolverhampton which took about 1.5 hours on what is one of the busiest weekends for road travel. We had a great lunch at the pub and then wandered back to the boat for a rest away from the heat. That didn’t quite work out as the boat started turning into a heat conductor. We decided to make our way back to the pub and had a farewell drink. Until we meet again which we are not sure when that will be as for once we have no other future travel plans. Think we are both a little travelled out for the moment as in the last 12 months we have been away for 45 weeks.