Day 2

5.30 am looking down the New Bedford from Hermitage landing stage

Woke early, 05.30 but bleary-eyed thought it was 06.30 so got up. Enough volts in the battery to run the radiio so heard the 5.30 timecheck but too late to go back to bed. Pumped enough water for washing, teeth cleaning and tea. And for washing up after breakfast, all quite civilised.

Forgot to mention last night I made my first sourdough since the trip to Llan in 2019. Left it proving over night so this morning knocked it back and put in my cast iron pan for a second prooving. Faffed around with some minor repairs, would have used the new vacuum cleaner but not enough power for that. Answered a few emails then the volts got to low for the internet or the radio so set of at 07.30.

It must take the flood tide a long time to get up to Earith according to the lockie I spoke to last night high tide at Denver/Salters would be 13.30 with slack water an hour either side. At 07.30 it was high at Earith and not moving at all. After the rail bridge at Manea the channel is narrower and the tide started to flow out quite strongly so we bowled along making good time. About an hour later the flood tide cancelled out the river flow and it was slack water again all the way to Denver. The view to port on the top section is interesting for about half an hour, looking across the washes towards the Old Bedford. For real enthusiasts there’s the Welney Wetland centre on the starboard side with a footbridge across to hides in the washes.

Past Welney the old river Delph which runs parallel and close to the Old Bedford empties into the New Bedford via a dramatic sluice.

Interesting cross current where the Delph empties into the New Bedford

I got to Denver around 11.00, moored below the sluice and phoned Ben (Denver lockie) he liaised with Salters relief lockie and gave me the all clear to head for Salters Lode at about 11.50. Just time to bake the sourdough!

Cleared Salters just after 12.00 noon. Sun so strong I had to put on a long sleeved shirt to stop my forearm burning! Past Upwell town hall as the clock clanged 2.00 sounded cracked. Then past a church in March as it’s bell struck 4.00, sounding almost as bad. About 16.20 pulled in to Fox’s Narrowboats for diesel and to talk to an engineer about the electrics.

Gerald had a bit of a poke around with a multi meter and decided the split-charge relay is faulty. But he finishes at 17.00 so I’m staying here over night and a different engineer (Alan) will fix it in the morning.

After he’d left I took the relay off started the engine and bypassed the relay. Left the engine running for an hour or so and I now have a decent charge. Be interesting to see if it holds it over night, I hope the other issues haven’ knackered the battery.

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