We left early and had already decided to go through Oxford city and not further up The Thames and through Dukes Cut. Dukes Cut is almost a By Pass for Oxford, a few more locks and I thick a couple of swing bridges extra. This was for several reasons, firstly there had been closures at Dukes Cut for work on the lock (Although some people had said these were finished now) secondly we didn’t want to be charged an extra day by a lock keeper even for the last tiny bit but mostly that we had gone through Dukes Cut last year and wanted to see the other bit.
|Our mooring stretch last night|
|I think these old buildings or facades have a Preservation Order on them, could do with weeding though.|
|Last year we watched a cruiser get wedged here. Not remotely funny.|
|Looks like you will never fit, but you do.|
|Turning onto the South Oxford.|
As we were button to button with the next boat I pushed us out so as to keep the disturbance down as as low as possible, we crept along and made the turn onto The South Oxford Canal. A pretty sharp turn but not nearly as sharp as the second one into the first lock.
Not awfully attractive here, a new railway bridge has been built overhead, but in the first lock there were some Long Term Moorings (Real ones that is) and someone had planted a honeysuckle and some other fab smelling shrub their perfume filled the air.
|Oxford's Coronation Street|
|Under the railway bridge, see Reader, we went 500yds on the Thames and put on Life Jackets.|
|Now this was the sharp turn form the right, Honeysuckle to the left.|
|Love these cast iron bridges.|
Now we all remember Inspector Morse telling Lewis how rough it was down by the canal in Jericho, but I have to say Reader, it was looking pretty good to me. Nice long gardens with lots of greenery, admittedly I couldn’t see into any kitchens but some of these victorian properties had classy gardens and summer houses. I reckon an element of gentrification has been going on here.
There were some boats moored opposite the gardens and I know how aggravating it must be to have a bunch of tinny generators going but the gardens seemed long enough to mask any sounds. All in all I think I could cope with living there.
|Summerhouses and roof extensions.|
|Own canoe and David wearing gloves.|
|All in all nice me thinks Inspector Morse.|
|OH READER LOOK!!!! My favourite, narrow locks with one gate at each end. LOVE THESE.|
A fairly quiet run along this section arriving at the Dukes Cut junction then a swing bridge or two more then we did meet a small queue of boats coming down. A nice chap I got chatting to was on his way to the K&A with his wife…. I cautioned him, but he said giggling a bit that he knows it well as he moored his boat at Newbury for ten years. He was surprised that water costs £4 there, but after he assured me that it wasn’t a new wife of two weeks who doesn’t know what was coming her way, I allowed him to continue.
All of a sudden we seemed to be arriving at our target. THRUPP to play the new game here of catch a mooring. All planned again Reader, early start to arrive between 11 and 12, the boats in this wee queue had come from Thrupp so we were confident of getting in. Its all changed there since last year when a few places were 14 days, a lot were 7 days although I think the vast majority only stay a couple of nights.
Mmmmm not much available where we wanted, there were plenty on the 48hrs but we wanted more.
Bingo!! Or was it?
|These post was the cut off point, bugger.|
David walked up to see what was what, he paced it out and we did get a space right behind bloggers Swamp Frogs HERE and the captain told me that there had been a 70ft there last night, so in we squashed, buttons to buttons.
Called a taxi and had a nice speedy drive to our car which we had left miles away near Kintbury on the K&A, air con on and away home.
By the time you read this we will be back on the boat again having had a few nights at home.