Sunday, 11 May 2008

A Bit of a Lark

0 locks, 11½ miles, Now moored at Prickwillow, River Lark

The weather girl forecast today as being the hottest day so far this year and even at the early time of 8am we knew she was going to be right. Before setting off we topped up the water tanks because we are led to believe that water points are scarce around these parts although we have found 2 uncharted water points so far since leaving Denver.

The fine weather soon had more boaters,mainly GRP cruisers and the like on the move and 1 character in particular who obviously had an aversion to narrowboats because he came roaring up behind us and overtook both of us well in excess of the legal speed limit and then promptly slowed down once he was well clear of us. We gave the crew a wave as they roared past only to be snubbed by the turning of their heads away from us, BLOODY SNOBS.

As the day wore on the heat was getting a bit unbearable so Dot got out the umbrella and used it as a sunshade. It certainly helped. The first tributary that we passed was the Little Ouse or Brandon Creek which we have chosen to forego at present as we are unsure of what is down the river worth looking at and what, if any, is the maximum winding holes available, there is also Brandon lock which is only 15m or 48ft so we cannot use it.

We have now turned into the River Lark where we initially stopped at Tom's Hole Farm moorings for a cool drink and a bite to eat. After lunch we carried on for a further mile to the Prickwillow 48hr moorings but these were full with big GRP cruisers so we carried on for another 300 yards to the Mile End road moorings where we found enough room for us and the other Derek breasted up against us until there was enough room for him to moor properly.

In the centre of this tiny village is part of the old steam pump house which is now the Drainage Museum which was on my must visit list. Over the centuries water has been pumped around the Fens by wind power, steam, diesel and now electricity. The founders of the museum have sourced many machines and artifacts and memorabilia concerning the Fens over the centuries and put it into a lovely setting with a video display, school interactive audio visual display and a coffee lounge. The 5 diesel engines on display, one of which has a 6 ton flywheel, have all been loving restored to working condition and 1 of them is probably the only working example in existence. After my visit I think I have convinced the rest of the team to pay a visit tomorrow.

Interesting way to mow the bank, fishing spots maybe?

1131 locks, 1505½ miles, 41 Tunnels, 41 swing bridges and 19 lift bridges since Nov 2006

1 comment:

Mo said...

looks like you're having a great time. We're looking forward to getting on the Fens later this year. It's worth a quick trip down the Little Ouse if you've got time on your way back. You can turn easily at the end before the lock and there's mooring there but don't stop overnight. It's a short walk to the shops though not much worth seeing in "town". Try to make time for the relief channel too - an interesting experience!