Sunday, 3 October 2010

Pushing our Luck?

Over the last few days every other boater we have met has either been intent on getting off the Nene or getting back to their mooring on the Nene.  Why?  Because of the rainy weather we have been having and the risk that the river would go into flood.
"We won't be panicked", we thought.
"Scare-mongers", we thought.
Well, last night we finally moored up, very precariously, to a bit of bank down stream of Earls Barton Lock.  The river was up by 9 inches.  The current wanted to grab "Ellen's" bow and push her out and back downstream!
It rained more over night and two more days of heavy rain are forecast.  Considering this, low bridges and high winds ................. at 8.30am the next morning we were under way!  Unheard of for us!!
Plan?  To get to the relative safety of Billing Marina.
Water rushed over the pointed gates of the locks and, when filling the locks, it even poured over the guillotine gates.  We haven't seen this before.  The force of the water made it extra hard for me to open the up-stream gates.
Water gushing over the 'pointy' end.
Locks didn't take long to fill!!
Water gushing over the guillotine gate end.
Full then?!!

Well, we are now at Billing Marina and, surprise, surprise, we saw NO other boat moving on the way.
In the marina, "Ellen" is 60 foot long and only the back 5 foot of her is tied to a pontoon but the positives are:-

  • safe from the currents of the river
  • amenities at hand!!
  • electric hook up!  ( the washing can be done, the ironing(!), TV can be watched all day if we want (watching a repeat of X-factor at the moment and not feeling guilty about it!!) and I might even get the sewing machine out!!  AND ........ I can humour my O.C.D. and HOOVER!!!!!!
  • Easy destination for Megan to come and find us to collect Maisie for her next visit to Stanwell.
Billing Marina

The weather forecast for the next few days is NOT good and we need to get back to Gayton Junction and we have to do that soon as the Rothersthorpe flight is closed for a week from the 11th October.   Whatever, we need to be at Stoke Bruerne for next weekend - an excuse for celebrating anything worthy of recent celebration!!   
"Rain, rain, go away -
Come again another day .........."!!!!!


  1. Living life in the fast lane again!!
    You risk takers you!

  2. Hi John and Angela,
    We are sat between Lower Weedon and Nether Heyford, just down from the Narrowboat Inn. In answer to the technical question, wellllll....ok.
    1. You need a GPS that has a .GPX file format.
    2. You need a copy of Memory Map on your computer.
    3. Then download the days route(track) from GPS to Memory Map.
    4. Save Track as GPX file to comp.
    5. Sign up to Water Explorer at
    6. Upload .GPX to Water Explorer.
    7. Go to My Links on Water Explorer and copy a link into you blog using add a gadget.
    and hey presto you location published on you blog in a usable google earth format.

    Hope this is what you wanted

    if you need any more info send me your email to