Taft Bridge 69 to Lower Burston Bridge 85
After breakfast Mick climbed into his waders. He then lowered himself into the water and undid the nuts that hold the grill covering the end of the bow thruster tube. With the water at below waist height the only part of him that got wet was his arm pit and of course his arm. His finger tips could just touch the prop, not enough to be able to sus what was happening, or not happening. Using our prop mate he was able to turn the prop in both directions quite freely. So it seems as if there is nothing obstructing it on that side. There could be something causing the problem on the starboard side of course. This would mean mooring somewhere shallow with the tow path on the other side. Wading out to the other side of the bow would not be a sensible idea, passing boats, depth of water, submerged stuff all sorts of hazards. When we find a suitable place he’ll have another go, but as the prop is off centre he will only be able to feel if there is an obstruction in the tube. If that doesn’t come up with anything then Oleanna will need to come out of the water at some point to see what the problem is and why it keeps blowing a fuse.
Once he was out of the water and tools packed away we could carry on heading northwards. The sun kept showing it’s face which made us feel like summer had returned. The washing machine went on whilst we worked our way back to Great Haywood where we pulled in to fill the tank and dispose of rubbish. The waders lying on the roof looked like Mick had totally shrunk away to nothing, or evaporated into a puff of smoke.
We carried on retracing ourselves occasionally meeting other boats at the few locks. One was NB Zelda who we’d shared the locks through Wigan with, suspect we’ll see them again in a few weeks as we both plan to cruise the Llangollen Canal. Another boat came around a bend just before a lock and being surprised that we were there he ended up ploughing straight on and into the offside, which took a little bit to get out of.
The afternoon was so warm, we wondered if it was possible to barbecue a steak pie and jacket potatoes. But as we moored up the warmth of the sun disappeared and put us off the idea of sitting out.
5 locks, 9.13 miles, 1 very short Mick, 1 soggy arm pit, 0 zero zilch, 1 straight on, 0 fleeces required, 1 full water tank, 2 loads washing, 6.30pm getting dark not good for drying clothes outside, 1 friend confiscated off the sofa, 2 chilly for a barbecue.