Sunday, 21 June 2015

Out on the Tidal Trent again

We are now moored above Cromwell Lock having yesterday completed our cruising up the tidal Trent and its connected waterways.

We did a little more sightseeing in Lincoln, especially as Ian was away much of the weekend at the beginning of June when we passed through the other way.

Ian did the walk around the walls of the Castle, while Helen visited the Bishop's Palace.  The audio tour of the walls was excellent.  £22m has been spent on the Castle including completing the wall walk and it was well worthwhile.  The photo shows the Cathedral seen from the Castle.

Lincoln has got very excited this year in celebrating the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, particularly as it has one of the four best contemporary copies.  This is also displayed in the new facilities in the Castle.  As part of the celebrations, a Barons' Trail has been set up around the city marked by these fellows.  This was the 'Waterways Baron' on the Brayford Pool which forms part of the navigation through Lincoln.

On Friday we came back to Torksey and on Saturday morning we came out through the lock and cruised the 26 km up the tidal river to Cromwell Lock which is the tidal limit on the River.  We found this a more straightforward stretch of river with little flow behind us or against us.  Leo's engine chugged away giving us a speed most of the time of just over 5 mph, so we managed the journey in just over 3 hours.

On Friday evening we did some paint touching up and then retired to the White Swan for a pint.  This sheep amused us, playing with the child's trike.

Torksey Lock has been extended in length and is now a most peculiar shape.  We went in first followed by a grey broadbeam, 'Eve and Debbie II'.

Here we are with the gates just opening onto the tideway, having dropped us 6 feet or so from the Fossdyke.

At the river end of the cut is this sign so that there can be no mistaking which way to turn.  You can see behind the sign the cooling towers of Cottam Power Station.

At first the Power Station appears on all sides of the boat as the river winds back on itself.  Eventually the Power Station recedes into the distance.  We left behind 'Eve and Debbie II' as well.  Leo likes rivers!!

At first we thought this was a sunken wrecked barge but in fact it appears to be a large lump of tree sticking above the water.  It wasn't floating but definitely one to avoid.  We have not found nearly as much floating debris in the Trent as we found last year in the tidal Ouse.

This is the first bridge out from Torksey.  Just past these bridges at Dunham is a floating pontoon which you can moor to, but we carried on upriver.

There are red or green posts on the inside of sharp bends so that boats don't come out of the channel in times of flood.  This cormorant was using a post to dry its wings.

There are a couple of islands on this stretch.  One was obvious with trees on it, the other is, as it says, sunken just below water level.  One to avoid!  We used the Trent charts from the Boating Association which mark the best course through the bends.  These are worth having, as we heard of boaters that had gone aground on the Trent.

Finally we rounded another bend, spotted the enormous weir and came into the huge lock at Cromwell, with another narrowboat "New Horizon's".  We had caught them up and overtaken in the last few miles up to Cromwell. For the benefit of the pedants reading this, no I don't know why this boat's name has an apostrophe before the 's'.

You get some idea here of the length of Cromwell Lock.  However there is a central set of gates so you don't have to use the whole lock for just a couple of narrowboats.

We are having a lazy day today partly because we've been told there is a major festival in Newark and the boats are moored three deep.  So we'll go in tomorrow when hopefully it will be a bit quieter.  After a few days there having a look round, we'll press on towards Nottingham and to Trent Junction where we aim to meet David and Victoria on their boat Pas M├Ęche in early July.

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