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Bernie has organised a trip to the Norfolk Broads. His planning page is here.
What are the Norfolk Broads?
They are an area of interconnected lakes (broads) and rivers in East Anglia. The area is marshy and much is below sea level. A classic Broads holiday is spent on a hired boat.
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Friday, October 4, 2002
Convoy to the Broads
We have booked the boat for 14:30, from Richardson's boat yard in Stalham.
I set my GPS for the yard. The waypoint is set to OSGB reference TG376244. We won't get lost.
Jennifer provides breakfast. We leave Cambridge at 10:15.
We take three cars. In the lead we have Rick, Bernie and Gav, followed by Nick, Jon Jack and Jennifer, trailed by Andy and Maky.
Jenny will be joining us tonight.
We take the A14, A11, Norwich, A1151. Norwich is a pain to drive through. Other than that, the journey is uneventful.
An ol' boy shows us the ropes. Literally. We're shown how to secure the boat when mooring using the clove hitch.
The ol' boy also shows us where to isolate the batteries and gas. Water and
diesel fuel fillers are shown. The "pump out" is not an issue - we are
only have the boat for a couple of days.
Rule of the road: drive on the right.
Our instructor also recommended that everyone gets a life jacket from their stores. We now have 10 jackets.
Bernie is deemed proficient, so we are allowed to take the boat early. Off we go!
Bernie takes the boat out of the boatyard. He does a good job of it.
After a few minutes I pester him for a go. I take the helm. Gavin has the map. He is my navigator. He is also armed with a GPS. This is total overkill, but then we are Nutters!
The response when turn the steering wheel is sluggish. I test by "plotting" a step function. Hard left lock, I see what the boat does. After a few minutes I stop playing. I have become used to the feel.
The GPS helps us stick to the 4 MPH speed limit.
I "drive" for 2 miles down the Barton River, through to Barton Broad where I relinquish the helm to Gavin.
We decide on Neatishead to moor up for the night. The map The Broads OL40, shows a pub, and it's not far from Hoveton and Wroxham railway station that Jenny will use to reach us this evening. She has been sailing in Ipswich today. Getting here by train should take a couple of hours.
Andy has brought some Scottish whisky.
Saturday, October 5, 2002
Hoveton Great Broad
We journey to Wroxham. Although a pleasant enough town, we feel it's too
noisy to stay for the night.
New Inn Horning
We return from the pub - it's only 21:00, but we're really tired.
"It's all the fresh air!" we complain.
Tonight's DVD is The Matrix.
The whisky bottle is half full.
Sunday, October 6, 2002
I purge the kitchen. It is pristine once I have finished. I relax for the rest of the day.
That's the good thing about having a large group of capable people. Everybody does their share - and then can be completely idle / relaxed / drunk for the rest of the time.
St Benet's Abbey
We meander to the Kings Arms at Ludham. We enjoy Sunday Dinner. It's gone 14:00 but they're happy to serve us - if we can order quickly.
The Abbot ale and food is good.
We find another JPM "Who wants to be a Millionaire" machine to thrash.
Tonight's DVD is Dogma.
The whisky bottle is almost empty.
Monday, October 7, 2002
I rise incredibly early at 07:30. Bernie has checked the engine, and filled it with water. Gavin starts driving at 07:45.
Jennifer sleeps in, she is undisturbed by all the noise. She's amazed to be woken up and find we are minutes away from mooring up.
Back at the boatyard at 09:00. We unload, and hand over the boat.
Very little fuel has been used. £10 of diesel. It's astoundingly cheap! I'm later informed that diesel is actually very expensive: it's marine/red diesel with no tax and costs the yard about 17p a litre. They then sell it to the unsuspecting public at about 50p a litre and we think that's cheap! Rip off.
There's fried egg on toast and coffee at Richardson's restaurant.
Everyone is on the road at 10:30. To avoid traffic problems at Norwich, we
return via Acle.
A fun, relaxing weekend with friends.
Jack said it sucked big time, and that he was really pleased to be allowed to go home a day early.
Gav captured this GPS trail. The hatched line shows our route.
These pages were put together in a few hours after getting home. Nutters: if I've forgotten anything - let me know!
Maky provided several images. Thank you!
Bernie helped too.
Scottish whisky, there's no 'e' in whisky. Non Irish/Scottish malt drink is whiskey. Thanks Gav.
Surfer Tony recommends:
N G Hubbard October 2002