Very quiet when we moored last night and only a couple of other boats turned up later. The shared ownership event at Braunston Marina was just winding up, so we saw a steady stream of craft leaving. The morning was bright and sunny again, as we set off for home. Lots of old wooden boats on the tow path after the puddle banks. As well as the one that sank last year, (or was it the year before), another looks as though it is on its way to the bottom. Spectacular skies again as we made this familiar trip back to the mooring, but it seldom fails to please.
A long weekend still isn't that long, so Sunday saw us heading back down Watford locks in much cooler weather. Still the sun did its trick again and came out in time for lunch at the New Inn at Buckby. Then back through the tunnel, (accidentally breaking the cratch cover zip on the tunnel wall, not sure how), and a wait at the top lock for one of the following boats. This turned out to be a training trip for one of the LNBP boats that takes parties of kids out through the year. By the time we got to the bottom lock, it was clear that as well as the Spring, the gongoozling season was getting well under way.
Watford locks are beautiful in the sun despite the steady roar of traffic from the M1 nearby. We tend to come here when it is not likely to be busy out of season, as it is quite a bottleneck, so that means the weather isn't usually so good. Funny how a utility company always seems to install a wire in the middle of the scene to add character to an image. Moored for lunch below Crack's Hill and walked to the top for a picnic. This is about the only high ground for miles around, apparently a glacial outlier, so the views are spectacular. You can see the relatively new Yelvertoft Marina from the top, as the canal winds around on its way on to Leicester. We turned there later to moor in Crick for the night.
The hedgerows and trees aren't in leaf yet, so you can see things that aren't visible later in the year. Near Shuckburgh on the way to Braunston you can often hear rooks as you pass. This time of year you can see their nests in the treetops too. Braunston was very quiet and we stopped for lunch on the terrace of the Mill House, the sun taking this as a cue to emerge from behind the clouds. Afterwards we paired up with another boat through the locks. Although intending to stop before the tunnel, such a nice evening meant we decided to carry on into the evening and moor just after Norton Junction. The repairs to the landslip before the tunnel are finished now, at long last.