As we are looking back over the last year's amended costs I thought I would put in a couple of photos from each of the last few years cruising.
This is a rare sight indeed. Helen, or any one, polishing the boat! Mind you now we have had a repaint and the paint doesn't just come off on the cloth, and we have found carnuba polish, I think I will be doing it more to protect our investment. I still think that this will be a rare picture though. We are in Polesworth on the Coventry Canal. Early season 2013
We were back up North for the end of 2013 as we over wintered in Thorne. Here is the Charity Keel 'Sobriety', of the charity of the same name, exiting Pollington Lock on the Aire and Calder.
After leaving Thorne in the spring of 2014 we headed up the South Yorkshire Navigations to Sheffield. The weather may appear dull but it was a great trip there and back, and we will be going again. I think we are somewhere near Spotborough on the River Don here.
Again not much sun in this photo but we are back North once more with Helen doing the honours at Greenwood Lock on the Calder and Hebble. Not far from our winter moorings at Dewsbury, at the end of 2014. I love the Calder and Hebble as it has a bit of everything, and is nice and quiet. Nothing like the Oxford at all. Great.
Once we had got off in spring 2015 this picture wasn't taken far from the start. We moored at Horbury Bridge and had a walk round the area. This was an old colliery railway that led us to a footpath close to the Calder. The bright birch bark certainly lightens up the picture.
For the autumn of 2015 we were aiming for Kings Orchard for our stop over and it is nice to have the sun as we head there from London and points south. We had done the length of the Thames and some of the connected navigations and were heading back to relative sanity (if there is such a thing). I think we are on the Atherstone flight of locks in this picture.
Spring 2016 saw us heading towards Fradley in the above picture. I like cruising early, and late, as there is little traffic and there is nothing better than getting inside to the stove glowing with tingling hands after been on the tiller. The same goes when entering a pub in the dark after a walk down a muddy tow path.
You could be forgiven thinking that we hadn't been very far in 2016 as here we are in the autumn passing through Hopwas Wood. We had a rendezvous with the Little Chimney Boat as Kim was going to replace our stove flue so we could have a double skinned chimney. This was required as we were going to leave the boat at Streethay Wharf for a repaint, and it would be a waste if the chimney leaked tar all mover it. I'm pleased to say that it doesn't.
After a lovely job was done or the painting we were off in March of 2017. This was going to be a 'funny' year as Hull was City of Culture and we would be dashing to and fro a lot. First of all we headed into Birmingham for a while poking about the canals in the area, before heading up North to make journey's easier. This is on the Curdworth flight and it will be interesting to see how soon anything appears here. There has been a lot of protest about the HS2 and you can argue about whether it is required or not, but I'm pretty sure the same protests will have been made about the building of the canals and their scar across the countryside. If you see old pictures of the canals there are hardly any pictures of trees. Things change, people adapt and, with help, the countryside will survive.
We finished the year in October 2017 being blocked from dropping down the Rufford Arm to our winter moorings at Fettlers Wharf by a stoppage at the Top Lock. It was fixed and we were settled in the weekend afterwards. I wonder where we will get to in 2018. I have booked for Liverpool and the Ribble Link so that will do for a start.
After compiling the figures I have had to amend the totals as I had double accounted for a few items. The amended totals are below. It was good to see it made the situation better.
2017 2016 2015 2014
Fixed 1328-17 1668-33 1504-09 1159-57
Moorings 2148-82 1268-48 1524-55 1297-88
Fuel 506-51 721-92 824-94 1156-66
Repairs 1698-50 1441-62 321-63 1558-64
Equipment 503-56 556-24 164-22 678-39
Consumables 517-80 342-24 454-58 255-22
TOTALS 6703-62 5999-34 4794-01 5336-56
(Amended once more due to mental maths failure, 1-Feb-18)
So despite everything it didn't turn out too badly at all. Even at nearly £55 a day for the time we were on it makes it a cheap long holiday, especially when you think to hire a similar boat would be around £200 a day. Obviously the shorter time you spend on the boat the more expensive it becomes. I expect that the older the boat becomes that costs will increase too. But as we are expecting to be on the 'Holderness' much more this year as Hull year in the sun has wound down (we are still City of Culture until Coventry take over in 2021!) and so we wont be going home quite so much.
Happy cruising for 2018.