Help us out, we want out of the locks!
47° 27′ 41.8392” N
5° 22′ 19.6932” E
July 15, 2015
We are starting to get tired of the locks. We cannot bear any more of them. We have done more than a hundred locks since we started the holiday one and a half weeks ago. Now enough is enough.
The only sure cure for this is to sail out of the channel, and we still have 28 locks in front of us before we are done with Canal entre Champagne et Bourgogne and can sail into the river Saone. So we carry on with the locks again today.
The locks are close to one another at this side of the mountain. In turn, the weather has been a challenge. More than 30 degree celsius already at the end of the morning, we are confident. We therefor start early. Before eight o’clock. It gives us some cool hours, where everything works. But then we come to sail behind a peniche. And we are in a series of locks under remote control.
We call again and again to VNF. “Parles vour anglais?” We ask hopefully. “Pas du tout” is the response almost every time. And then we have the trouble. Per embarks on his through the winter updated French: “Ici batoux plaisance Ronja. Avalant (declining). Nous sommes a ecluse numero 32. The shit does not work. The lock is red, and not a damn thing is happening, when we use our remote control. ”
Amazing what you learn at evening-classes at FOF in Odense (running french-lessons) even without excessive diligence with homework.
VNF come and fix the error within 20 minutes. Only a very few times we have to make an additional call.
A place to moor for the night we find a kilometre after lock 35, Beaumont. We put Ronja under a grain silo. Only ship at the spot. No other boats have ventured to sail as far forward in the lock system this day.
Let’s get out of the locks. Tomorrow we have nine locks back, then there will be free passage down the Saone River, where we expect the city Auxonne to be the first stop for more than just one night. From there the rest of the tour will be 14 days with only 16 locks between us and the Mediterranean. Great.
Log book: Today’s distance: 33 km. Sailed time 7:45 to 18:00 = 10 ¼ hour. Locks: 20 !!! Weather: Sun all day. Possibly 35 degrees. We have no thermometer. But clearly one of the hottest days at all. We rig a large umbrella to create shade for the helmsman. Comfortable on the straights. A hassle during the lock operations.