Monday, May 02, 2011

Thar she blows

I thought it was hard work last night mooring up Jannock with a strong wind trying to blow her out into the centre of the river at the same time. Eventually I had her firmly connected to terrafirma using four mooring ropes, two to long stakes and two to corkscrew type  screw in eyes. Last night’s strong wind had increased this morning which made the process of untying more of a logical puzzle. I left the centre line connected and removed all the others but still needed Brenda to anchor one of the stern lines to keep the back end in near the bank. I then wrapped the centre line around me while I unscrewed the mooring eye from the ground. This meant that both of us were on the bank, being anchors, and the wind was trying to move Jannock out into the river. Eventually I got Brenda to get aboard and then I ran and jumped on board carrying the centre line with me. I just made it – phew.

The wind was so strong as we made our way towards Dukes cut that Brenda needed a fleece winter hat on as she got earache without it. Up through the stop lock and things were getting a bit more manageable now. The crew of a southbound boat coming down through Dukes Lock were complaining about the effect of the strong wind on their boat. I pointed out to them that they aint seen nuffink yet and things were going to get a lot worse once they got out on the Thames. We experienced a couple of dodgy moments when we slowed to pass moored boats and found ourselves being blown onto them by the crosswind. No pictures today as were far too busy trying to stay mid channel   ;^)

We found a suitable mooring for the week and tied up, Brenda created a great lunch from what was left in the fridge and then I was off to Wallingford on the Di Blasi to fetch the car. The wind now became very useful as I covered the 25 miles back to the car in under one hour – the Di Blasi normally averages about 20mph due to the effect of hills but the tail wind sorted that out today. I even had 38MPH on the clock at one point on the Oxford bypass which is definitely a first, never been above 35 before.

On my return we finished packing and putting away and then set off home. It has been a glorious 12 days and we did not have one drop of rain fall on us even though we watched several thunderstorms pass by one evening last week.


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