Hanging On For Green. 10th September

Kiln Pontoon to Cromwell Lock Pontoon

The Geraghty zoom included topics such as Department stores, Post Holes and just what they might be, Soprano frocks and the E3 bus route. During the zoom we got a wiff of whatever from outside that we’ve smelt the last two evenings. Mick decided that he should check our lead acid batteries just incase one had started gasing. We have a starter battery, which was fine, and two bow thruster batteries, which were also fine. The pong had to be coming from elsewhere.

Next was a trip to stock up on more essential food stuff to cover us for the next few days. Waitrose was visited and we managed to come away with two bags for under £30, a far more considered shop than yesterday!

With everything stowed it was time to move on downstream. A phone call had been made to Kings Marina to see if we could top up the diesel tank, but a message suggested that the lady who runs the marina was away, we’d not be calling in. Instead we carried on past the entrance. Mick radioed ahead to Nether Lock, there was a boat going down and one to come up, we were to come in on the green.

Holding on waiting

However the green was quite a wait. Whilst holding onto the centre line we had time to watch the people working on the railway tracks that cross just above the lock. I spent quite a bit of time admiring the size of each spider that inhabited each recess of the big piling we were clinging to. The biggest spider was around the size of a 50p piece.

Eventually a boat appeared and the lock lights turned green. Nether Lock the last couple of times we’ve been through on self serve has taken forever! Hopefully with a Lock Keeper present it wouldn’t take as long. The bottom paddles were whipped up in one go, rather than incrementally on self serve, we were down in a jiffy.

North Muskham

Fishermen lined the banks, just how do they get their cars by the fishing pegs? The pub at North Muskham was popular with people sat at the tables, only one cruiser moored up.

I glanced to the side of Oleanna, hanging in the air as if it was a Hummingbird was a Kingfisher. I grabbed my camera, not the best photo, but it looked straight at me before glancing back at the river. Then it darted ahead and dived catching a fish, then zoomed back to a perch to enjoy it’s fishy snack.

It was a Kingfisher, really

Soon the pontoon mooring at Cromwell came into sight. Two boats on the outside, definitely one on the inside, would the other inside be free. Thankfully it was, meaning we’d be by a tap and possibly have electric for the night. We winded and then made our way onto the inside, across the pontoon from us NB Preaux, we’d be heading onto the Tidal Trent with them in the morning.

The pontoon, easier to moor on than the wall

Mick called the Lockie Neil to check there were copies of the new Trent charts available, there were but he’d have to be quick as he was only on duty for another hour. The new version (18) was checked over. A few noticeable changes, one in our opinion not as good as our old version 13. The first page from Cromwell looks to have been copied and shrunk slightly from a previous version. I checked the red line, the line to keep to, it didn’t look to have changed, I added the old page into the new book.

Version 18

Other details missing were at Dunham Dubbs. Here is where boats have had problems as they turn the bend. Just keeping to underneath the pylon wires at certain times of the tide isn’t enough so extra markers have been added on the banks. These haven’t made it to the latest version of the charts. We printed the chart off from facebook and added that in too.

Dunham Dubbs

A delve into the cat proof cupboard came up trumps with three CRT electric cards, Mick tried one in the post by Oleanna. 19 credits left, bingo we had power! A couple of loads of washing and the use of the electric kettle, all paid for years ago.

We’d just said hello to our Trent buddies when the skies opened, thunder rolling around above us. We’d hopefully have chance to chat more in the morning. Originally when Mick had booked our passage he’d been told that high tide would be around 9:24, we were booked for 8:00 but may not get away before 8:30. This might mean the tide would be too low by the time we reached Torksey to get over the cill. However Neil the Lockie today said he’d be around from 7:30 the green light would likely to go on around 7:45, the sooner we got going the better chance of getting in at Torksey.

Early night for us then.

1 lock, 5 miles, 3 batteries fine, 1 suspect boat, 1 hobble shopping trip, 2nd very hot day, 1 long wait, 1 space on the inside, 1 bored cat, 1 alarm set.