We finally left Newbury on 14th May with fine weather, lower river levels and excitement about finally being “on the cut”!! It felt good to be on the move again and making progress. Our destination was Theale so that we could find a spot to leave our boat in the very capable hands of Chris and Sue while we took a side trip to Venice. Please see the blog re Venice for details of this exciting trip!!!!!
This part of the canal sees the Kennet river flowing in and out of the canal so that at times there are strong flows around the weirs and river entry. None of this posed too much trouble but we wisely planned to stay above the Wolverhampton Lock and swing bridge so that we could check it out prior to attempting this rather swiftly flowing stretch. Everything went brilliantly though until we encountered our first really obnoxious fellow boaters. Suffice to say we stopped briefly and let them get far ahead, appreciating all the other wonderful people we are meeting.
Re-fueling with diesel and purchasing life jackets and fenders at Wolverhampton, and availing ourselves of the water and Elsan points nearby, we continued finally arriving at a lovely spot very near Theale by Thursday night. Close to small trout stocked lakes with loads of bird life we found a 14 day mooring and spent the next few days cleaning Celtic Maid inside and out making full use of the beautiful weather we were experiencing.
On Monday we prepared the boat (refilling and emptying as required!!!) and a delicious dinner for Chris and Sue to take up residence while we headed off on our “holiday”!
Every time we are away from Celtic Maid we just want to get back to her and continue the adventure. But Venice was marvelous and our boat sitters did a fantastic job!!!!!