Browsed by
Category: Continuous Cruising

Living on a continuous cruiser on the UK canal system under CRT rules.

Aldi panic buying because of deaded lurgy!

Aldi panic buying because of deaded lurgy!

OMG! Aldi’s carpark is full. WTF is going on!!!!

I managed to get a space only after going into the over-spill carpark, a place rarely ventured.

Today, it was full!

All the toilet roll had gone!

All the handwash had gone, (I got washing up liquid)!

All the pasta had gone.

All the tins of beans had been depleted, and my favorite biscuits had been greedily stockpiled, and not by me! No doubt I’ll see them on eBay in the next couple of days.

I’ve never seen it so busy. I usually go on Monday to avoid the crowds. Today it was chaos.

Here’s a picture of the car-park.

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Gayton in the Fields

Gayton in the Fields

Sort of between Gayton and Rothersthorpe in the wilds of the Northamptonshire countryside.

Covid?

Close to the Evergreens Equestrian center. No doubt they will be feeling the effects the covid virus in the course of time. Usually, there’s parties of kids who learn to ride the horses in the gymkhana behind the boat.

Can’t see demand being that high whilst the specter of DISEASE stalks the British isles.

There’s hosses in the field right opposite and canada geese and swans that overnight in the field next to the bridge.

Generally lot’s of wildlife around here, which I’ve noticed before.

Choice spots

I suppose this is one of my chosen spots on the way out toward my new home.

This year, I’ve decided to move. This time in a northerly direction. I won’t be taking in every mooring stop and doing 14 days in each, just the choice spots on the route between Blisworth and Rugby.

Choice spot no.1

Today, it’s the first choice spot. Gayton in the fields.

I moved here today at about 7am.

I’ve been here a few times.

There are low hedges, and fairly good broadband, parking. Very peaceful. About 1 mile from Gayton and a mile from Rothersthorpe.

Get’s sunshine all day. When there’s sun to be seen.

Good for painting as the bank is fairly low allowing you to access the sides and hull without problem.

Also, being a 45fter, I can push it round with poles here.
Ta-da!

Here’s a picture or two.

Bridge 45 Grand Union - Gayton
Evergreens equestrian center

The Bonnie Lady

I’m trying to get round to adding the name to the boat, but it’s taking a long time.

I did a bit of bevel painting around the stickers we added last year.

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Top 10 Advantages of winter mooring in a Marina

Top 10 Advantages of winter mooring in a Marina

Yup.

That’s it for me. I’ve done my stint and from this Friday, (7th March), I’m back on the cut. Away from the protected environs of the marina and back out into the wilds.

Horray.!

Is it better to over-winter in a marina?

Here’s some of my positive and negative aspects of choosing one, or the other.

Advantages of the Marina over the Cut

  1. Electric. Easy and probably the only single reason I’d pick a marina over the cut is the electric.
    It’s in abundant supply, you can use as much as you want of it, and it doesn’t cost very much.
    Contrast this to starting of engines of one sort or another, it’s a greener and more pleasant way to spend those dark nights watching telly or using the computer.
  2. Post. All post is delivered to the marina office. Around Christmas, this is a massive thing allowing you to shop with alacrity.
  3. Parking. No more parking on the road, it’s all secure. Need your keys to get in and out and a short walk to the boat.
  4. Shelter. The boat is slightly more sheltered on the pontoons than areas you might be located on the cut.
  5. No mud. Serious business when you’re coming home from work or doing the shopping and got the towpath full of mud. Not so bad here on the GU, but down on the Kennet, there were definitely areas where the towpath was impassible.
  6. Personal care facilities. If you so wish, you can wash and ablute using the marina’s facilities.
  7. Shop/chandlers. To drop by and pick up things you may need in the future for the boat.
  8. Water-point/Elsan. Is right there! No fussing and planning trips to the waterpoint/elsan. Waterpoints are at the end of the pontoons, and the elsan is about 25yards away.
  9. No passing boats. I’m not one of those people that complains a lot about passing boats, but in certain circumstances, they can be detrimental in terms of noise or wake or collisions or all the above. This simply doesn’t happen in the marina.
    There are no speeding boats. Although the boats do speed around the marina, it has little or no impact on your boat.
  10. Deep charge batteries. For 4 months 24/7, your batteries will be receiving full charge courtesy of the marina hook-up.
    By the time you leave, they will have reached the maximum amount of charge that they can receive.
    From there on in, electrons in your battery electrolyte line up, so they’re all uniform, and ready for action!
    This can significantly improve the performance/life of your battery bank.
Gayton Junction, Grand Union
Gayton Junction, Grand Union

Advantages of the Cut over the Marina

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Gayton Marina

Gayton Marina

Due to adverse weather conditions, expected, I’m moving away from the Continuous Cruising this winter, onto the Marina.

It’s the first time for years… The last place I moored at was Barton-under-Needwood over three years ago, when I was fairly new to boating.

Barton Turns Marina

Barton turns marina
Barton turns marina

Was where I used to live.

I always got the impression that Burton was full of criminals.

The marina was alright. I went out a couple of times to the bar and had a few meals in the restaurants. I lived there for about three months from May until August maybe.

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Longdown Road

Longdown Road

I’ve decided to come down this way, as last year I went up through the Watford Gap, past the UK’s oldest motorway service station down to Crick.

The mobile signal ain’t that great down there and there’s the constant moan of the motorway when the wind is blowing in the right direction.

Longdown Bridge

In the name of change and a new exciting experience, I’m heading up to Rugby, as far as Hillmorden Locks to see how the land, or more the canal lies down in this direction.

North to Rugby

Walking

Along the towpath, Olney Prison and young offenders unit is about 1 mile north, close to the new marina Hillmorton Pools…

I rang them the other day. They’re designed by the same group that run the Eden Project in Devon, or so it says on their website.

Kept on getting hit in the face by brambles as I went on my night walk.

I won’t be going up there again.

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Kinver Canopies Cratch Cover

Kinver Canopies Cratch Cover

A Cratch Cover is like a pram cover for the front of a boat.

It covers the whole of the sunken bow area.

Cratch cover
A cratch cover

The reasons for fitting a cratch cover may be:-

  • Increased living area: Having a warmer area protected from the elements means the living space of the boat has increased. It may be more pleasant and convenient to eat drink and relax in this space as opposed to other areas of the boat.
  • Better insulation: The fire pumps out heat which duly disappears through the front doors and windows into the wilds of Northamptonshire. Now it will be escaping into the covered cratch area and staying there, at least for some time.
  • More space: Very useful for stowing all those bits and pieces and more you’re trying to cram onto your boat.

Crick Boat Show

I took advantage of the fact that Crick was only 6 miles down the road when the show was on in May to get an idea of the prices and companies that were offering these devises. £13.60 to get in.

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Mooring in Flecknoe

Mooring in Flecknoe

Now in Rugby district of Warwickshire.

Initially tried staying in a previous location close to the Flecknoe station road. There were so many boaters there, and the mobile signal wasn’t that great.

I decided to re-trace my steps a little, which involved turning the boat around.

Oxford Canal like the M1

Turning the boat around turned out to be no joke.

The traffic on the Oxford canal is like the M1. Just so many boats, in either direction.

Usually, I can just nip the boat around, no problems, as long as the canal is wide enough.

Unfortunately, it was slightly windy, and that, added to the sheer number of boats moving made it difficult to do anything that wouldn’t involve blocking the canal for the moving traffic.

In the end, I had to go right the way down to Lower Shuckborough, which is about 2 miles away. Then come back.

The mobile signal is better here. It doesn’t drop out.

There are fewer other boaters. It’s closer walk to the car.

A bit more out in the wilds. Which suits me better.

Locking restrictions

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