Monday 30 April 2012

The morning after...

We awoke this morning from our first undisturbed night's sleep in quite a while. The wind had dropped, the rain had stopped and the beautiful sun was shining..... launching ourselves off of the boat, without coats or wet weather gear, these were the sights that greeted us:

These are were the steps down onto the pontoon lock moorings
The water from the sluice hasn't slowed down any
 Just expanded somewhat
 The permanent moorings a little way upstream are diminishing
 and a number of trees are getting their roots washed

 The Mill is growing it's own personal moat
The dogs thought all this water was wonderful and Floyd and Fletcher had their new harnesses to show off; Baxter shows Floyd how to model
 All this posing is no good for an action dog and even Baxter gets bored
 There's far more exciting things to be doing in this 'new' landscape
 Like drowning Fletcher.......
 .....quite a lot
 until you get the stick out of the water
 smart, safer dogs looking like dogs with a purpose (not sure what the purpose is yet!)
 and poor old Baxter still doesn't understand what the rumpus is all about
 oh well ..... time for a drink and a paddle
before going home for a 'double-decker' snooze

Sunday 29 April 2012

Wildlife and river update

When our little band of intrepid idiots walkers set off in the rain on Friday morning, we heard what we thought was someone working a dog with a professional whistle although neither person nor dog was visible. As we came closer to the sound we looked up to see a red kite on a nest calling loudly to it's mate who was hunting. We stood and watched and listened for sometime before moving on lest we upset them - only rubbish photos, but will try and get some with the good SLR camera IF it ever stops raining.

Further along this Heron was much easier to photograph as he/she was too intent on dinner to bother much about us
Then there were these gorgeous Belted Galloways (you know these things if you watch Adam on Countryfile!) who were both quiet and curious
just the cutest of teddy bears
then of course there were the indigenous species who didn't seem to think that they were wet enough (except for Baxter who felt that he was way too wet within 30 secs of leaving the boat) 
Looking back up the valley from Ferry Bridge

Then, during Saturday's bath walk, we came across these lovely Crested Grebes; not the best focused pics I'm afraid.

And, finally, a quick video of the water we are sitting in and, far worse, what we have to leave through - not for a goodly while yet methinks.
(In case you can't get the video to run, this is the state of the water which we have to go through as we leave the lock)

Oh well, Sunday afternoon and time to don the wet weather gear (which is living up to it's name by being permanently wet) and join the alcofrolics next door for a pint.

Saturday 28 April 2012

Strong Stream warnings and a number of locks closed

"Navigation is not advisable" and a number of locks have been closed to help dissipate water. Said the lady on the Environment Agency's recorded message. Although we're not on a 'rise and fall' pontoon we are snug as a bug on our mooring by Alwalton Lock - just as long as the water doesn't rise too high and cut us off from the pub shop. Masses of walking for the dogs and anyone daft brave enough to want to go out.
The only 'victim' is Daisy who has been shut in for the foreseeable future - if she fell in in this lot (and she frequently does fall in) she wouldn't stand a chance. So I sat her down and discussed the idea of her wearing a life jacket - ever independent creature that she is, she had an alternative idea
Water Newton Church
 The upstream 'benign' side of the mill
 The weather may be foul but the River and it's valley is so beautiful
 These are some of the big skies we encountered between Wansford and Alwalton on Thursday (both by boat and whilst walking)

Friday 27 April 2012

River in flood again but t'internet is back

Whilst it was naughty of Graham to put that video on of the weir stream, the navigable water is, of course, affected by all this lot hurtling down from Northampton and all fields in between. We did make it to Fotheringhay the following afternoon (late) and had a very jolly time socialising with Mark & Kate from NB Button End; Liz & David from NB Indulgence and Mick from NB ?. Great company and a very pleasant stay as always.
G broke a tooth over the weekend and had a dental appointment for Tuesday am in Oundle, so we decided to stay another day as Joe also needed to do an oil change. Tuesday they phoned and postponed his appointment until Weds pm so we decided to move after all; Joe firtling in his engine room and me driving the car to Nassington and walking back. So it was 5.15 by the time we reached Wansford Station (home of the Nene Valley Railway) and we called it a day - G walked back to Nassington to bring the car the remainder of the way whilst I cooked supper. It peed with rain until after lunch on Weds so we stayed put. A lovely spot, despite the weather.

 Thomas waiting for his 'face' of the day. My Dad was manager of the factory that bound the first editions of the Thomas the Tank Engine books and brought a set home - I wonder what they would be worth now had we kept them?
 The London bus is destined for Marble Arch
 The station is immaculately kept by the volunteers
 The trucks are in a siding waiting for repair/TLC - I remember having one like the one in the foreground in Dad's my train set. Nostalgia ain't what it used to be!
 Our moorings from the opposite bank

We made a late (again) decision to move to Alwalton on Thurs afternoon which is where we are currently safely moored. The River has been closed at Yarwell and it doesn't look like we'll be moving for a while. This is what we encountered coming out of Water Newton lock en route; no camera tricks, just a lot of bouncy water!!
 I took this one- handed standing in the well deck and 'strap-hanging' with the other hand (just in case)