Sunday, 13 October 2013

A method of winding from the bank

For a couple of days I've been helping Ally and Ben strip wallpaper from their house in Wolverton. Gloss painted woodchip is a nightmare to get off, even with a steamer. I managed not to fall through floors where floorboards were removed for rewiring, so that's good, but my right shoulder now aches a little.

As well as the wallpaper stripping there was a bonus boat trip. A+B had moved Jubilee down to a couple of bridges past the Galleon pub to be nearer the house, but wanted to return to the marina on Saturday. While we were getting ready to leave Briar Rose cruised past with Adam at the tiller. I didn't see Adrian who must have been inside. I popped my head out of the side hatch and exchanged "hellos" with Adam.

Shortly afterwards I started to reverse to the winding point by the Galleon. Jubilee didn't seem to be performing going backwards as well as I'd remembered, but there were quite a lot of leaves and other vegetable matter in the water which probably didn't help. I got through the bridges all right, but seemed to lack steering (in forward) when I got to the wide. I glided to the bank to take a trip down the weedhatch but spent a few minutes in conversation with the man from a moored boat before I got the cover off. He'd been impressed with the way I'd single handed the boat backwards in to the bank. I told him the trick was to take things slowly. His boat was a Diamond Resorts timeshare boat, and he told me a little about a points system and how he'd been trying to book the boat for over a year. He was thoroughly enjoying his two weeks aboard.

Down the hatch I found the prop as clean as the proverbial, so I screwed down the cover again and dragged the boat back away from the Diamond Resorts boat. Then, to wind, I gave the bow a shove towards the opposite bank and started pulling the stern rope towards where the bow had been. This encouraged the boat to continue to rotate. When the bow had cleared the opposite bank I pushed the stern out and stepped on, engaging forward and continuing on my way.

This technique worked well owing to several factors:

there was no wind
there was no traffic
the wide was also long
there was sufficient room to pull the stern back

Then we crossed the iron trunk aqueduct, went up Cosgrove Lock and slipped easily into the mooring at Thrupp Wharf.

I had to retrieve my car from outside the house in Wolverton so I unfolded my bike and cycled off. I made the mistake of going by road (and made the further mistake of losing my way after Stony Stratford). I should have gone along the towpath which would have been less than half the distance. and I wouldn't have got lost!

The photo shows the Amazon (freshly MOT'd) outside Jubilee at the marina.

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