Sunday, 21 April 2013

Caen Hill the Big Decent - Sunday 21st April 2013

Another lovely sunny morning as we set off to negotiate the first 6 locks which lead to the Caen Hill flight. We stopped in the marina at the top of the flight for Nb Chance to have a pump out whilst we took the opportunity to fill with water.
We were met at the top of the flight by Tug, Kirsty , and 6 month old whippet Boris who are volunteer lock keepers and because it is so quiet kindly helped us down the flight for the price of regular cups of tea. We only met one other boat coming up the flight and one waiting at the bottom to see if another boat would join them on the journey up. Many thanks to you both for all your help and hard work, I know our crew really appreciated it.
101 Tug Kirsty Boris
Below is the view the steerer gets as you are in the lock waiting for your crew to start the drop, it just looks as though you are going to go over the edge of a cliff.
102The edge
Being a nice Sunday morning there were a lot of friendly and inquisitive Gongoozlers to watch our every move and ask awkward questions as you entered the locks.
103 Gongoozlers
There is a nice cafe at the top lock and they must do a roaring trade as Caen Hill is a big visitor attraction on the system taking the canal down some 131 feet in its 16 locks with an overall drop of 237 feet in the 29 locks from Devizes down to Foxhangers Bridge.
104 Top Lock cafe
The flight uses side pounds to keep the distance short between each lock and from the top it looks like a 16 lock staircase and is an impressive sight to see.
105 Looking down the flight
Half way down and looking back up the flight; in the distance is Andy and his grand children. Andy is a friend of James and Doug and is one of the Lockkeepers on the flight. It was his day off but he came to see them as we made our way down and they now have to walk back up to the top.
106 Half way
The bottom at last it, looks so impressive from here and you can appreciate all the hard work that went into its construction.
107looking back
Having reached the bottom of Caen Hill in good time we decided to complete the remaining 7 locks as they were in our favour and two more of Nb Chances blog followers, Phill and Terri from Nb Silhouette, had come for their canal fix and were willing helpers for our crew, thanks to you both for your help.
Once through the locks we headed for Sells Green for the night. On our way there we had our photograph taken by a couple on bikes and at the same time I took this cute photo of their dog in the front basket of the bike. I think June would have loved to travel the locks in the same way.
121 Dog in basket
As two tired crews moored up we realised that we had completed the 29 locks in 4 hours and looked forward to a relaxing evening.

No comments:

Post a Comment