Calcutt (sandstone doggers and why I had to move today)

Heavy frosts were forecast for the rest of the week so I wanted to be sure we had a full water tank in case we got frozen in; however, it seemed very mild when I left Napton to cruise to the water point at Calcutt on Wednesday morning.  The cold-cough-throat-ear thing I have is still hanging around so I promised Karen I would wrap up well when outside – honestly, it’s worse than man flu!

After filling up with water I reversed back to what we call ‘our mooring’ by the reservoir.  As I was mooring up, Marie and Raymond came by on their boat.  They retired a few months ago and are cruising the canal system following a similar route to that which we did when we first started.  I took a few pictures for them as I know it is unusual to get pictures that include both people when cruising.

Marie and Raymond passing us at Calcutt - looking very happy as there's little better than cruising on a dry winter's day

You may remember the pictures of the odd sandstone rock formations on Napton hill that I included the other day.  I couldn’t find out what they were but my Dad got in touch with a possible solution.  He obviously has more time on his hands as he has been retired longer than me.  It seems they are sandstone doggers; doggers are lumps of rock that were rolled along by glaciers in the ice age and therefore were rounded smooth – they were then left as the ice receded.   I had always thought these things were glacial erratics but I believe erratics are generally lumps of rock that are carried by glaciers and left in an area where the rock type is alien.

The sandstone doggers

This is a description of the Napton sandstone doggers written by the Warwickshire Geological Conservation Group: This site contains a collection of very large sandstone nodules referred to as "doggers" which were excavated from the Dyrham Formation in the former Napton Brickworks Quarry (photo. evidence at Warwick Museum). The nodules display a variety of sedimentary structures and contain some fossil shells.

Whilst waiting for Karen to get home from work I was looking at a Canal Market Place forum.  Sinead, a boaty friend, posted a question about the type of telescope she should buy for star gazing.  I immediately thought of a guy we have met several times in Braunston who is always outside his boat star gazing with an elaborate telescopic set up.  I can never remember his name but always remember his boat as it is called Brimstone – a British butterfly.  Anyway, I posted a response explaining who the guy was and did anyone know him.  Immediately someone responded with his name, Richard, so I got in touch (through FaceBook) and he posted some interesting information for Sinead.

I had a browse through his website and he is a fascinating chap, not only does he run a ukulele plectrum business, he takes three photographs of the canal each day (from the same position) and posts them on the internet.  He stands on a bridge by his permanent mooring and takes a 360 degree panorama, a shot down the canal one way and then a shot the other way.  Needless to say we are in several pictures as we often moor near him at Braunston.

Thursday morning was as cold as forecast and the water was frozen over as expected.  At least we are in a sunny spot here so can take advantage of the solar panels – at Napton where we had been for the last week we were in the shade nearly all day.  The reservoirs were frozen over too – the first time we have seen that this winter so it shows that it had been a cold night.

Looking out the side hatch on Thursday morning

Reservoirs frozen over too

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