On Sunday we went on a bit of an adventure, courtesy of our friends on Indigo Dream. They were part of a St Pancras Cruising Club convoy that cruised all the way out out to Gravesend on Saturday, moored up overnight, and then made the trip back. We joined them for the return leg, and what a day it was! The Herbies and Chances were on board for the Saturday and have both blogged about their adventures.
We arrived in London and took the ‘Javelin’ high speed train out to Gravesend. It took just 23 minutes! We located the narrowboats out on the town pier, having picked up some Krispy Kreme doughnuts on the way. Coming along with Richard and Sue were us two, as well as boaters Andy and Sarah, Dave and Wendy. Oh yes, and the FIVE greyhounds!
The convoy was accompanied by the tug, Major, with its Gardner 6LW engine.
We set off at 2:30, as the tide turned, heading back into London on the rising tide. Conditions were perfect.
We were nominally in a line, according to our locking order going back in at Limehouse, and mostly this was adhered to. London VTS commended us for being very orderly.
The ships out at that end of the river are quite big! But they were all very polite and friendly when our convoy leader spoke to them over the VHF radio, and we had no problems with wash. It was just so interesting to motor past them and to marvel at their size.
We passed under the QEII bridge, where the M25 crosses the Thames, waving at a red London bus as it crossed. Then, eventually we were back on waters we had been to before, as we passed the entrance to Barking Creek and the Barrier, always a thrill to pass through.
The Isle of Dogs was choppy, as usual, and then were back in London, and through Limehouse Lock. A wonderful way to spend and afternoon, and the hospitality was superb! Thanks so much for inviting us, Richard and Sue!
Maybe next year we can bring Willow- her bluff fore-end would be well suited to the Tidal Thames!