Monday, 2 April 2012

The Big One (1-1)

Sunday 1st April 2012 - Tinsley Marina to Mexborough Top Lock and the pastures moorings.

Today is the start of our longest cruise time wise on the Inland Waterways canal and river system. We have not fully decided on where we will go, beyond the first couple of weeks. But first we are going to cruise down the Tinsley Flight in the company of Steve, Vicky and Sid the dog on Wb Tabularassa and Ruby, Alan and Di on Nb Black Ruby. The weather today was very good and was not as the Bimbo weather forecaster had been predicted it to be on television. Clear blue sky's all the way.

We would like to spend some time down in the midlands and even further south. However, the lack of water will dictate just where we will get to! We are torn between wishing that the recent good weather would continue and a long spell of wet weather to boost water stocks. I guess warm sunshine during the day and a good downpour each night would be the ideal scenario.

I will ask the Memsahib to refrain from performing her "naked rain dance" until after sunset. It will be a win-win for everyone!!!

After the winter months Rosie has been looking a little jaded, so a spruce up is on the cards. The make over has started with the roof being prepared by treating the small patches of discoloured paint areas prior to being repainted. Several additional fender points have been added so that we can try to reduce the contact points between the boat and other objects.

The journey was delayed at Swinton Lock with a set of automatic lock gates that failed to be automatic. We contacted BW who sent the "man who can" and we continued to persist in cycling the gates. Just before the "man who can" arrived we managed to get the gates open. Once we had the boats inside the lock and the gates closed the control bollard refused to release the key until the "man who can" was about 20 feet away!

Several interesting wildlife items were noted along this stretch. One was several mothers little bandits armed with catapults, who attempted to have a go at Alan on Nb Black Ruby. The second was a large Terrapin basking on a rock on the River Don, just down stream of Aldwarke Lock. A pair of Peregrine falcons were noted to be doing a bit of pre-nuptual display flying. Later I did the usual evening Bat survey which produced just two Daubentons.  Moored this evening at Pastures Moorings between Mexborough Top and Low Locks.

Out for a late Sunday carvery lunch in the pastures restaurant. The broadbeam that we have blogged about previously is still located at Pastures and has been here for well over a year. Another narrowboat was having an engine overhaul, as it had cracked a casing on the engine block and sprayed the engine room with oil! 

Here is Rosies running total from the end of last years cruising season..

Rosie's Starting Running Totals
Distance 545.0 miles
Locks 527
Swing / Lift Bridges 93
Tunnels 6
Pump-outs 8
Engine Hours: 2004.9

Rosie's Running Totals
Distance 555.4 miles
Locks 548
Swing / Lift Bridges 93
Tunnels 6
Pump-outs 8
Engine Hours: 7.0

Today's Daily Totals
Miles: 10.4
Locks: 21
Swing / Lift Bridges: 0
Tunnels: 0
Pump Outs: 0
Engine Hours: 2012.1


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