Today we completed our time on the Grand Union Canal and joined the river Thames. Travelling from Bulls Bridge to Kingston-Upon-Thames
Grand Union Canal – Canal and River Trust
Another bright and sunny morning greeted us as we started on our way to the Hanwell flight of 8 locks. Our arrival at the first lock didn’t exactly showcase the route ahead. The entrance to the first lock was through a morass of rubbish.
After that though, it was a pleasant descent with the flight being next to the wall of the old Ealing Lunatic Asylum.
Built in to the wall, was a small door which in the event of a fire could be used to pass hoses through and use the water from the canal.
The route continued to be quite rural in appearance as we continued our approach to Brentford. Passing the offices of GSK there were a series of sculptures each one being of a different nautical knot.
We moored up for a lunch break close to the Gauging locks in Brentford. I also checked the weed hatch to make sure there was no rubbish wrapped around the propeller before we hit the tidal river. (Thanks for the advice Sue)
Tidal River Thames – Port of London Authority
After passing through the Gauging locks we had a short section before we arrived at Thames Lock for our 2:15 booking. The only other boat was a single hander who was heading for Bristol. We agreed to stay together for the tidal section, just in case one of us had a problem.
We were quickly through the Lock and after a few hundred yards we made the right turn on to the Thames. Our booking had been made so that we would have the current in our favour for the 5 miles to Teddington Lock and the end of the tidal section. Happily the conditions were quite benign with just a light breeze and there was very little river traffic. In fact it was about 45 minutes before we saw another boat.
All this meant that we had the chance to enjoy the journey and take in the scenery. All in all, it was far less stressful than our 5 minutes of tidal river between Denver and Salter’s Lode a month ago.
River Thames – Environment Agency
Now on Environment Agency waters, we continued on for a couple of miles before mooring up for the night at Kingston-Upon-Thames. Here we managed to get a nice quiet spot across from the town. We are very close to the boundary of Hampton Court and whilst out walking found that we could walk around some of the grounds. Our plan is to explore further tomorrow. A free alternative to the £23 a head charge of full entry.
After so many nights of mooring in the countryside, tonight we found ourselves just watching the world go by.
3 swing bridges