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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    4,213

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Quote Originally Posted by djones18 View Post
    Well, you have us reconsidering our upstream plan to go beyond Abingdon. Everything you describe is everything we hope to partake. Evensong sounds wonderful. Maybe we can get close enough to Oxford to go into town without getting wedged under a bridge.
    There's not much in Abingdon IMHO, the stretch nearest the river is very nice, there' s a Waitrose the other side of the Abbey park and if you keep within (say) 100 yds of the river there are some great buildings to see and visit. Dunno about the pubs - we drink on board..


    Le Boat were relaxed about Folly Bridge - the lady just said take the bimini down - they have at least 3 a year that get broken!

    Quote Originally Posted by djones18 View Post
    Question from Dave here -- We will be cruising from 20 April - 27 April. Should we adjust cruising time and mooring up times for higher number of boaters during the Easter Holiday period? Anyone have experience on the Benson to Henley section during this period? I expect weather may play a part though I've heard all weather is tolerable weather for an Englishman and his boat.
    Easter is usually quiet, indeed anything above Reading is never totally congested until the summer school holidays. It's always? quiet in the week anyway. Having to wait for a lock is part of the pleasure when you can talk to other boaters...
    Weather is totally unpredictable; GB is an island and has to suffer what's thrown at us - included the leftovers from "you lot". It may be 'hot' to us or cool in your terms.

    There are a lot of liveaboards on the river and some have little regard for their surroundings, or rules, or anything else. This has given rise to a rather unpopular car parking company taking over the management of Reading and Hampton Court Palace and other moorings. There's no free period at Reading, but there is 24hour free at HCP - if you ring said company as soon as you arrive. They're a devious lot and (can be) / are slow to answer because it's a premium rate line. It's quicker to do it via the Web on a laptop or a modern phone. There are moorings outside and if full you can squeeze in along the walk towards Kingston. These are also covered by the parking company. Their website is:-

    https://www.where2moor.co.uk/

    The above has no connection with the original and friendly TVM site:-

    https://www.thamesvisitormoorings.co.uk/

    who still manage a couple of moorings. This site (copied badly by where 2 moor) shows all the official moorings and is more helpful.
    There are plenty of spots where you can moor for free, but which have no bollards or nice edging (e.g. Beale Park, Pangbourne Meadows).

    HCP is great - they also have Choral Evensong, but it tends to be early music - not so easy on the ear IMHO, but it's nice to sneak into a place where the visitors don't go. There's quite a community at the Palace which visitors don't appreciate.
    If you say you're going to a chapel service you can get in for free - but you have to go via the "Guard Room" and mix with the inmates ..


    Enough.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    39

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    I appreciate all the excellent information members here have provided especially your individual suggestions and the links to mooring and planning websites. We have seven nights on the river and I'm already seeing I can't do everything I originally planned.

    So, I put this question to you. If you were taking out-of-town family members (in their 60s) down the river for 7 nights from Benson (leaving 1st day at noon) to Penton Hook (arriving last day at 9:00AM) with mandatory overnights at Henley, Windsor and Hampton Court what other overnight stops would you consider? Assume your family members can walk/hike up to about 6 miles per day and in fact want to walk to sites they visit. Assume they want to moor in quiet, beautiful, historical surroundings. Assume they can moor on river banks or at designated moorings. Assume they like good pubs/restaurants but can eat/drink onboard. Assume you won't get fed up with them and send them packing on the second day.

    Okay...can you recommend mooring locations you've loved providing some variety with a pub/restaurant recommendation which might fit within the schedule I describe? Am I asking too much?

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    39

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    We're on our way to England. Visiting wife's family in Cornwall then onto the Thames on the 20th. Hope we meet you along our way. Should we meet in your pub, first round is on me. Thanks again to each of you who responded to this thread. We've added your suggestions to our itinerary.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Medway
    Posts
    19,480

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Hope it all goes to plan and if you do decide to visit London, this is the way to travel.
    You need a "Roamer" ticket.
    Coffee and snacks aboard.
    Forget the overcrowded and expensive trip boats just hop on and off the Clippers all day and anywhere, outside the speed limit you get go at 25 knots and annoy small boats visiting the Thames.
    https://www.thamesclippers.com/
    Last edited by oldgit; 10-04-19 at 07:38.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Finchampstead, Wokingham, Berks
    Posts
    1,971

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Bank Holidays can be "not for the faint hearted" at key locks on the Thames.

    For example Marsh Lock (Henley), Hurley Lock, Boutlers Lock can take a long time to get through and be particularly chaotic if you have to wait in the main stream. However if you are on the more rural stretches at these times it will be fine.
    Regal 2250 - see www.sportsboat.org.uk

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    4,213

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Quote Originally Posted by mlines View Post
    Bank Holidays can be "not for the faint hearted" at key locks on the Thames.

    For example Marsh Lock (Henley), Hurley Lock, Boutlers Lock can take a long time to get through and be particularly chaotic if you have to wait in the main stream. However if you are on the more rural stretches at these times it will be fine.
    ++

    Surely not at Easter??
    (May - probably
    August maybe )
    But the OP is coming over at Easter time and unless there's a huge heatwave, not very likely given that traffic is down nowadays.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Finchampstead, Wokingham, Berks
    Posts
    1,971

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    But this year there is only a fortnight between a late Easter and May Day and the february/march warm weather tempted some boats back in early
    Regal 2250 - see www.sportsboat.org.uk

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    4,213

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    Queing is what we do in England at least, especially amongst the more senior folks - typical of those that inhabit the Thames. Frustrating perhaps if you're rushing to get somewhere, but all part of the experience that makes The River what it is.

    In a queue - assuming you're tied up on the lock layby. Get off the boat, wander along the line exchanging pleasantries with fellow boaters and their hounds, proced up to the lock and offer to help those about to be trapped therein, by catching their lines. Most crews couldn't throw a mooring line properly to save their lives...

    It's a special British phenomenon - you don't see that happening Stateside (except in small communities), so join those who have converted...

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    39

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    A
    Quote Originally Posted by oldgit View Post
    Hope it all goes to plan and if you do decide to visit London, this is the way to travel.
    You need a "Roamer" ticket.
    Coffee and snacks aboard.
    Forget the overcrowded and expensive trip boats just hop on and off the Clippers all day and anywhere, outside the speed limit you get go at 25 knots and annoy small boats visiting the Thames.
    https://www.thamesclippers.com/
    Great advice. Thank you. We are now in your very green country. Attended funeral for family member in Weston-Super-Mare and now visiting Cornwall. Tintagel, Port Issac (yes, the crew insisted), and wandering around the coast. Absolutely stunning coastline. Hoping Thames weather is different than Cornwall weather or we are going to need more gear. My British spouse is back in Marks and Sparks heaven. When she is happy I am happy. Onward to the river by next Saturday. Thanks again to you for persisting to educate us on your River.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Medway
    Posts
    19,480

    Default Re: USA Visitor Boating your Thames (Again)

    The young very attractive weather girl on our local TV is convinced that temperatures are going up over the Easter weekend.
    OG, having "experienced " 67 other Easters, has some doubts.
    Last edited by oldgit; 15-04-19 at 07:17.

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