Thursday, 11 October 2012

So to Soham

Monday was a bit gloomy after the previous 2 days so we had a nice lazy start and I walked the dogs before a pleasant lunch at the 5 Miles pub - mains and a pud for £7.50. Plenty of choice and quite pleasant for the money so, with a belly full of apple crumble and custard, we pulled pins.
As there were no locks to contend with, and I would be using her again shortly, we towed the little boat behind us. Baxter was furious about this and barked at it continuosly until we got totally fed up with him and shut him back indoors
Passing the Little Thetford mooring, we decided to moor on the opposite bank as G fancied the fishing might be good. I jumped down and out with the front rope; landing in a ton of swan shit and G couldn't get MR in as it was too shallow so he yelled that we'd have to cross back over onto the EA moorings. I couldn't, however, reverse my leap upwards to get back on and there isn't a bridge in either direction for miles. After to-ing and fro-ing for ages, I really thought he'd have to throw me the kayak and the paddles and leave me to paddle after him. Eventually he managed to get enough boat in for me to throw the pins and mallet back  and scrabble back on board. Nightmare.
We awoke on Tuesday morning to a very hazy (and, in my case, very bad-see previous blog) start to the day. The sun soon came out and, after a quick walk withe dogs, I headed off a little way down the Gt Ouse before turning right into Soham Lode.
Although it all looks rather forbidding, this gate had been left tantalisingly open - I slipped through feeling a bit like a character from an Enid Blyton story. I fully expected to be met by wall-to-wall weeds
But no - this was what met me on the other side - big, big, skies
At the end of that long straight, by the trees, it started to twist and turn
and then I came round a corner and found a bridge 'ole......I haven't seen one of these March ish. I came over all nostalgic for a moment until I looked down through the beautifully clear waters at the fish
I even found a house or two
With Pampas grasses blocking off their view of the Lode
I often wonder why so many people pay through the nose for a waterside location and then do their best to hide it/pretend it's not there. Perhaps they don't want idiots like me gawping up their gardens
Then I found a bus graveyard - despite the sad state of them, they still looked quite cheerful due to the bright paintwork
Perfect Kingfisher territory but, sadly, there was no-one home
a typical flat Lode bridge purely for farm traffic
After nearly 2 hours I passed a footpath sign on the bank - Soham village and 'Lode end' was still 2 1/2 miles away. Another 5 miles plus at least another hour (downstream on the Lode; upstream on the Ouse) was just not feasible so, reluctantly, I turned and headed back - I still had the dogs to walk as well. Another time
back passed Kingfisher branch - still no-one home
and then, as I approached the bridge 'ole a little fish jumped, followed by a Pike - I just caught the turmoil in the water that the Pike's presence caused
These guys must have been on the bank somewhere when I came up - it's amazing how they ignore you when you're down at their level. None of the usual hissing even when they have young
If you had started from the top end you'ld think you'd reached a dead end
but round to my left is the exit - I wouldn't half be stuffed if someone had come and closed the gates - perhaps I should have blue-tacked a sign on, 'please stay open, back at 5.00pm'
and back onto the vast River Gt Ouse - a big push to the left and I'm back to MR
and out again with the dogs aroun the circular walk at Little Thetford, up to Pope's Corner and back along the flood bank. An early..ish night for me, as we had to be up at 7.00am the following morning


  1. As a "Famous Five" 'er, I'm supprised you didn't have a supply of Ginger Beer & Ham Rolls just in case you got marrooned in a ton of swan sh1t. Still having a Little Thetford to get back onto the Narra.......blinder!

  2. John I did have Ginger Beer but I don't like ham! Spiffing