We are now back in the pound below the Navigation Inn at Stoke Bruerne. We expect to stay here only a couple of days, although we are allowed up to seven in this spot. Leaving Cosgrove this morning the sun was doing its best to shine through some light cloud, but the forecast heatwave is yet to arrive. After ascending the lock at Cosgrove, we had a pleasant six mile cruise through the countryside, picking out some nice rural mooring spots for future reference. During the last mile before the Stoke Bruerne flight, we caught up with a CRT ( Canal and River Trust ) dredger which was weaving along. Square shaped with a large digger bucket on the front, they don’t look the easiest things to steer in a straight line. Fortunately we needed a tank full of water so we stopped at the base of the lock flight to fill up. The CRT crew asked if we were going up, to which we replied “yes, in about 40 minutes”. They didn’t want to wait. We had lunch whilst waiting, then it was on up five of the seven locks. Tonight a visit to the Spice of Bruerne is on the cards for a takeaway curry. Tomorrow the weather is reported to be glorious, so a day of gongoozerling, ( boat watching ) whilst sitting outside one of the pubs will probably be the order of the day.
So far on our travels this year we have seen numerous ducklings and today we saw our first batch of goslings, just the cygnets to go.
Our first batch of goslings this year.
Totals 6 Miles 6 Locks
Running total 81 Miles 52 Locks 3 Tunnels
On Friday we set off from bridge 75, aiming for the visitor moorings below the lock at Cosgrove. We thought the area may get busy due to the weekend being a bank holiday, however it has been the opposite, we were spoilt for choice as to where we wanted to moor. Whilst here we have walked both directions along the bank of the river Great Ouse, which is accessible by descending steps at the Iron Trunk Aquaduct.
Looking from the river valley back towards the canal.
We also visited Stony Stratford, a small market town on the outskirts of Milton Keynes and found that it’s high street still had an abundance of useful shops. Of course Sunday involved having a roast dinner at the Barley Mow P.H.
Today, the weather was forecast to be a bit wet, however most of the day has been very pleasant. We visited an old curiosity shop at Wolverton Wharf, and gave the boat a wash so all in all a productive day. Tomorrow we are aiming for Stoke Bruerne and possibly a nice Indian takeaway.
Totals 3 Miles
Running total 75 Miles 46 Locks 3 Tunnels
At 0930 this morning we set off for the top lock. A boat had just passed us and we would join them for the long journey that lay ahead, ( 2 locks and about 400 yards ).
Approaching the top lock.
Waiting in the pound with the Navigation Inn in the background.
Once through the second lock we said goodbye to our locking partners as they headed off towards the remainder of the flight, and their eventual destination in London. The mooring in this pound is restricted to 7 days and is fairly shallow in places, but we managed to find a spot where we could get in, and also line up the satellite dish. We plan to stay here now until after the weekend. For lunch we visited the Boat Inn above the top lock, and then after we walked back towards the Blisworth Tunnel. The huts by the entrance are now put to use by a blacksmith, and also an artist creating stained glass items. We also spotted a novel use for any old shipping containers lying around……turn them into boats.
It was then back to the boat before the forecast rain arrived, and to work out our itinerary for the next few days.
Our new mooring at Stoke Bruerne.
Totals 400 Yards 2 Locks
Running total 41 Miles 34 Locks 3 Tunnels