Seven Nomads enjoyed a pre-Christmas recreational paddle up the Grand Union canal yesterday in preparation for the festive season. The water was very high, almost over the towpath in places and, though cold it was quite a bright day.
A new fallen tree prevented us venturing very far up the Gade toward Croxley Moor, so we called it a day and turned around there. On the way back the chute down to the left of Batchworth lock was about as full as it ever gets and very enticing to the white water paddlers. Ian tried it out first, getting pushed hard into the (undercut) left wall by the force of the stopper and then got out to provide safety for Martin who followed, getting well stuck and rolling in the stopper through not boofing fast enough. The remainder of the party thought discretion was the better part of valour and portaged Batchworth lock, though Matt and Tony shot the much tamer W shaped river Chess weir as a consolation.
A very enjoyable paddle was had and thanks to everyone who braved the cold – Matt.