An Autumn Cruise

An opportunity to go cruising arrived so we are heading north for a long weekend. On Thursday the weather was fine and sunny as we got ready to leave but we had seen the forecast which didn’t look good. The only problem with our start was Albert’s starter battery failed! We managed to quickly get a substitute from Baxter’s and we soon fired up the engine and were on our way.

Halloween Pumpkin

At home we had prepared a pumpkin (with two cat faces) and so were Halloween-ready! At Stoke Locks we met hire boat returning to Weedon so we paired up for the first lock. We then found another boat above the lock waiting to go up. After some adjustments we waited and went up the flight with a UCC hire boat from Braunston with a group of scouts from Essex. They were very helpful and made a good locking team. They stopped in Stoke and we carried on through Blisworth Tunnel finally stopped for the night at Bugbrooke, opposite The Wharf Inn, even though it was only 4:30 – it gets dark early these days. We just had to go into the pub for meal and drink.

Bloggers Derwent 6 moored at Heyford

Friday, the first day of November, was wet and windy. Overnight a plethora of leaves had landed on Albert’s roof. Passing through Heyford we found bloggers Derwent 6 moored up. At Furnace Wharf we disturbed a kingfisher who scurried along in front of us.

At Buckby bottom lock we dropped in to Whilton Marina café and had some delicious soup for lunch. A steady stream of customers came in while were there. Obviously a popular local venue.
Going up the Long Buckby Flight we met a few boats coming down which helped, but the lock mechanisms are so stiff the flight is never a pleasure.

We turned off up the Leicester Branch and moored up for the night near Weltonfield.