After a long delay blog service is resumed and we go up the rivers Cappagh and Killcrow. This run, while short and reasonably simple, becomes ever more interesting the closer I look at the landscape, and I'm indebted to Brian Goggin for helping me make sense of it. Oh, and the reason for the long delay in blogs is that the site is now running on up to date software (thanks Colman!) all of which started because the 'subscribe to updates' link above would't work. Well it bloody well does now - it's been one of those nightmares!
The Hawthorn Blog
Liveaboard life and general wanderings on the Irish Inland Waterways.
With a week long high pressure forecast we escape Athlone for a run on Ree and Barley Harbour proves ideal for some quiet time
As we're paused between the high jinks of Christmas and the coming new year, it seemed a good time to sum up 2012, and to consider what we're hoping 2013 might bring.
After years of dithering, we've bitten the bullet and gone for a solar set up.
Hawthorn's crew may have been reduced to two, but life goes on. I reflect on Hobbes's lifetime of boating, and eating.
What can I say? Hobbes, our beloved companion of over thirteen years, has stolen his last sausage. We suspect we're not going to be the only one's to miss him.
We continue to return south down the flooded Shannon. Hawthorn copes well with the high water levels, and Waterways Ireland's staff look after us - a combination that delivers us safely to Shannon Harbour in good spirits having enjoyed a run we'd anticipated being more than a little hairy.
We move again, upstream to Carrick on Shannon and then down to Richmond Harbour. There's high excitement at Jamestown, and some testing times on the River Camlin.
If you're a subscribed reader to this blog, you might be wondering what's happened to the email notification - sadly the last upgrade wiped out all the saved subscribers and you may need to subscribe again. I believe the RSS feed is as was, should it not be you may need to re-subscribe to that.
Apologies - it's all way above my limited computing skills!
The wet summer means that boating up river from Shannon Harbour has a feeling of deja vu about it: once again the water levels are high, and the going slow, it feels more like autumn than high summer. We put in at Portaneena for a few day's 'island dwelling', and then press on.
Possibly because our first contact with the Irish boating public en masse was at the Shannon Harbour rally back in 09, we've always had a bit of a soft spot for this gathering and, having missed last year's when we were down the River Barrow, we thought we'd return again this year. There is a theory, and one we normally practice, of not returning to an event, or occasion, with high expectations of enjoying it as much as previously. Would this rally match our memories?
The 'Three B's - Byrne, Bevan and Byford - take on the challenge of moving one of Ireland's oldest barges across the Royal Canal. Would 'Rambler's' deep draught and recent engine work prove to be too much of an obstacle? We would see, but there was no doubting our willingness to have a go.
We boat back down the Shannon harbour from Ballyleague, with a night in Barley Harbour and one in Athlone, to Shannon Harbour. Where we hear noises that will profoundly change the cost of using, mooring, and maintaining, a boat on the Irish canals.
We return to the Shannon for a run to Ballyleague. The river is quiet, but there are lots of small boats about with men in yellow jackets and fancy GPRS units - they're surveyors, which could be very bad news in the long run. At Ballyleague we cope with the least dog friendly access ramps we know. And I fix a window.