Monday, 11 April 2011

Nivernais - Decize to Clamecy

Left Decize on 30 Mar but managed to ground three times getting out of the Vieille Loire - no buoyed channel this early in the season and lots of sandbanks - the final time we had to pump tanks to get off (the next step was to throw Angie and Kes overboard)!  Then into our first Canal du Nivernais lock which was guarded by the land Navy.

Entrance to Nivernais
It was all very quiet and the Eclusiers fairly friendly. At Cercy la Tour we found an interesting 'project' cottage within a few minutes walk of a long stretch of free quayside moorings - but we gritted our teeth and moved on as both children are getting married this year and finances will be dodgy.

Cercy La Tour
Not sure going onto Summer Time was a good idea as we seem to be waking much too early!

Anizey Ecluse at daybreak
This early in the season it is very quiet - a boat every few days with the disadvantage that some of the biefs (pounds) are very shallow/weedy with no channel carved from heavy use.  Also a lot of the village shops haven't opened for the 'season'.  So back to home made bread (delegated to Peter as usual) and curries when the vegetables run out.

Chatillon en Bazois
Chatillon came just in time for Peter's 65th birthday (and Mother's Day) so Angela found the most expensive restaurant in town (must be a female talent) and we broke our all time record for the size of the bill - it was the two bottles of Bougogne that did the damage.  The cake had to wait till Sunday.

Then it was on towards Baye and the top of the canal and our first exposure to 'how to fill three ecluses at once'.

After Baye it was through the three tunnels - where it got a bit 'African Queen-ish' in places. Peter lost some face when he (accidentally) tried to shift some displaced masonry with the barge

Fetch a chainsaw
After a hard day doing the Sardy flight (following another boat with an eclusier working at snail pace) life settled back to a more relaxed routine - we also encountered our first lift bridges with Peter working hard (supervised by Kes).

The weather was glorious so we took a weekend off at Villiers sur Yonne - and cleaned inside and out.  Peter planted up the vegetable garden using seedlings he had sown in March and Angie managed to deepen the tan.
Kes has taken to rolling in muck so he gets thrown into the canal each time - in this weather he might consider it a pleasure rather than a punishment!

Now in Clamecy a nice little town - still no mooring charges after three weeks on the move - excellent!  Met up with Pauline and Ian (an Australian couple with a local holiday cottage) whom we had met in Chatillon en Bazois.


No comments:

Post a Comment