Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Elements 0 Herbie 1

Sometimes it's worth ignoring the dire weather forecast and going out anyway. We just had a very enjoyable three days tootling down to Brentford and back in the company of nb. Shallmar. Actually we didn't really get very wet, it was just showery or light drizzle.

The wildfowl appear to be on their second broods of the year now. Coots and moorhens in particular seem to be busy raising their second batch. They like to nest on a raft of rubbish which often seems to include old crisp packets like this one.

I like the canal as it nears Brentford. Not at all urban as you might expect, although motorways and railways do intrude here and there. Here we are going under an underground train!

One bit of industry we do pass is the big Nescafe factory at Bulls Bridge. Depending on the wind direction, you can smell the roasting coffee for miles. It smells like really good fresh coffeee. I wonder what they do to ruin it when they make ordinary Nescafe.

Down at Brentford you can see the boatyards at the dock just as the canal enters the tideway. There always seems to be major repairs going on, and steelwork everywhere. It looks as though this boat is having its bottom overplated. They sit the boat on the new steel, weld it up and them trim off the edges. Meanwhile the local heron seemed oblivious to everything as it waited patiently to grab a meal.

Passing West Drayton on our return, the gravel boat slowed down to warn us of divers in the canal round the corner, and sure enough, there they were. Were they searching for a body, or lost treasure? No, they were examining the state of the piling.

Getting back into the Slough Arm is no mean feat. The entrance is well hidden and narrow and the turn very tight. This photo sequence gives some idea as Kath at the tiller gets it just right.

1. the entrance is just after the bridge

2. and just before the blue sign

3. here we go

you can see the new pole/ plank rack I made too.

4. now swing hard left

5 and we're in

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