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Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Being Prepared

Its all in the preparation! A successful cruise in the winter is all about preparing yourself and the boat, firstly and the most obvious is to make sure that the steerer is wearing proper winter clothing, you often see people just wearing a jacket and jeans, the cold can be debilitating and when you are stood for several hours steering a boat in the cold it can be very tiring as well, even if you are lucky enough to have a roaring back cabin fire by your feet! I find that sailing gear is great and really keeps the wind out as well as the cold, when I boat in the winter I also wear wet weather leggings as you can guarantee that every lock your bum comes in to contact with will be wet, and a good pair of gloves is a must! Preparing the boat is something that most people take for granted but if done properly then it should perform without any issue, a winter engine service is a good idea and a clean set of fuel filters should be top of the list as well as making sure that the batteries are in tip top condition, the cold weather plays havoc with a poor set of batteries and will reduce there capacity very quickly, make sure you have full gas bottles, full water tank, empty toilet tank and plenty of supplies as you never know where you might end up being stuck, taking a few simple steps will enhance the winter boating experience and not make it a night mare.

Today started off very cold again, the car was covered in ice this morning and so was the car park at work, the canal isn’t frozen over as yet but another couple of nights of sub zero temperatures will I am sure start the canal freezing over, it needs to be very cold indeed before any significant amount of ice will form on the canal and hinder the navigation, lets hope we don’t have a repeat of last years weather, by this time last year we had several inches of ice on the 'cut' and that pretty much stopped all navigation up here on the 'Shroppie'

This weather does start to slow down the progress that the lads are making with regards to working on the boats but the sun shining does make it a little more bearable and today the sun has shone all day so although it has been a cold day at least it hasn’t been a miserable wet and windy day and the lads have all cracked on with maintenance on the boats.

I see that David has done a Facebook link, a 'like' button on our websites and also reinstated the Twitter page, well done David, I know it wasn’t easy, hopefully it will all help to improve our exposure and widen our audience, so everyone out there, try and help us out by clicking on any of our links, it really helps with pushing us up the Google listing.

That’s it from me for today, I hope you all keep warm tonight, its gonna be another cold one!

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