Tuesday 27th to Friday 30th June 2017
First thing Tuesday I commandeered a fellow boater to help me take Shangri La up through the Ecluse St Jean-de-Losne and to the H2O slipway. I am sure I could have done it alone, but discretion is always best, particularly locking up. So we lifted Shangri La out the water for a look-see at the underneath. Mixed feelings here. The actual epoxy coating was in good shape. There was a bit more growth than I had expected. There were also loads of strange jellyfish-like things stuck to the hull.
The boat has been standing for 9 months without moving, and it has been a particularly hot summer. The worst growth was closer to the waterline and bow areas where the heat and sunshine gets to. On the good side most of it came off with a brushing and low pressure wash off. So actually not too bad I suppose.
Back into the water, and I took Shangri La down through the lock on my own, which went well. Manoevring in the marina is now very difficult as, with so much weed in the water it is far to risky to use the bow thruster. Fortunately there was another fellow boater around to take my lines and help me tie up.
Repairs and Maintenenance.
The other thing that has been bothering me is some spots of rust and cracked paint on the forward coachtop. So I have de-rusted, sanded, filled and smoothed thes spots. Now just waiting for some rain free days to put on a coat or two of paint. The side-light boxes were also a bit shabby, so am painting those.
Otherwise Shangri La is in pretty good shape. With the help of the H2O engineers we have made quite a few improvements. A whole lot of waterpiping has been replaced, the fuel filter housing renewed, and shut-off valves for the main engine and generator fuel lines fitted.
Wednesday I did not get anything done – had to ‘trek’ up to Paris Gare du Nord to meet my wife and her mother and help with luggage. As mentioned before, getting from London to St Jean-de-Losne involves numerous train trips on a tight schedule. Suffice to say we all arrive back at Shangri La about 1900.
Thursday was a last few shop up items and settling up with H2O, as we don’t plan on returning here for this winter.
Leaving St Jean-de-Losne
The original plan (I like to plan things in great detail first, and then adpat as necessary!) had been another day in St Jean, and to head off on Saturday all the way to Chalon-sur-Saone. But there was no reason to stay on, and we decided to leave on Friday and make an extra stop over at Verdun-sur-le-Doubs. We decided to give Seurre a miss – we called there last year, and other than that there is absolutely nothing there, the capitainerie was mostly closed and/or unhelpful.
Verdun-sur-le-Doubs on the other hand had been delightful, and proved to be again.
We left from H2O marina in St Jean on Friday, and after stopping off and taking 250 L diesel, we headed down the Saone. Although there was intermittent rain, the trip down to Verdun was pleasant, with no problems at the 2 locks.
The result of the hot summer and very little rain is that the water levels are low and the rivers not flowing very fast. So we did not make quite as much speed as I had hoped, but the good side is that we wil make better speed going back up.
Verdun-sur-le-Doubs indeed lived up to it’s expectation – friendly and helpful Capitainerie, good facilities and working wifi!
We arrived there at about 14.30 and spent a pleasant relaxing afternoon and evening wandering around the town, followed by eating aboard.
Next – on down the Saone to Chalon-sur-Saone.