Bugbrooke to Cosgrove

Saturday 25th September 2010

Weather – Bright and sunny, blustery later – Day 14


New crew arrived, another Stephen, but he’s a Stephen and not a Stevo! He’s a good friend of Justin who has his own disabilities

caused through Thalidomide many years ago and will be with us through the rest of the week.


We had the prospect of the jaunt through the third longest tunnel on the canal system at Blisworth – some 3057 yards, followed by seven locks down to our target at Cosgrove.


The kayakers got off on their way and Pisces and Elysium dawdled off behind them for the five mile run to the tunnel. Needless to say the guys were sat bank side at the entrance having arrived nearly 45 minutes ahead of us.


We loaded up the kayaks and off we went line astern into this quite amazing, straight tunnel which allows two way traffic in this structure originally finished in 1805. British Waterways spend £4.5 million in 1984 (how much now) on restoration and no one could possible not be impressed at the engineering skills of the original builders.


Anyone who hasn’t visited the village of Stoke Bruerne in the area of the canal should do so – pretty canal community that sprang up due to the building of the canal and attractive buildings that house the National Waterways Museum.


We were lucky that the locks at the top were already full and as usual there was a throng of gongooslers watching! Eddie and I got it perfect fortunately so no embarrassing jeers!


The locks down proved a steady trip and Bob took a turn at the helm of Elysium – shows my confidence in these guys handling skills that I am happy for them to take her – my pride and joy!


We then had a steady run for our next target of Cosgrove where needless to say The Barley Mow was the place for the de brief which had taken place well before we arrived. Tuned into a quite riotous session as the whole gang went there and the kayakers and support teams got to know each other. Stephen started on the champagne and the landlord must have been happy with his afternoon take!


The riot continued on Pisces as Jen and Roy had gone back to make copious amounts of bangers and mash (plus beans so heaven knows what the atmosphere will be in the boats tonight!      


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