|Pyewacket under tow in Saturday - photo Mareike|
As I mentioned in my post about escaping the fair, James and Mark managed to get Pyewacket's Petter going again, and went for a hair raising cruise in strong winds on Saturday evening, followed on Sunday by James, Hannah and I taking Pyewacket all the way into Cambridge, leaving the Duck out of town.
|Pyewacket's first cruise ! Mark does the hula to celebrate Photo: Mareike|
It was a bit of a challenge. Although the engine does now work, it was still only possible to start it by hand. Mark was the only one able to turn it fast enough to start it and he was needed to steer Suzi Q, so it was just me, James and Hannah on Pyewacket. Additionally, for some reason, the engine refused to idle - if it dropped below a critical number of revs per minute it'd stopped entirely. Add to this a dodgy throttle controller which gradually slipped back towards idle if it was left alone, so needed a bit of string to hold it in place, and a gear lever which couldnt be moved into reverse unless said piece of string was removed, and you have some idea of the level of challenge involved! Mark set off behind us as rescue boat in case he was needed to restart the engine, and we headed into town, James at the wheel.
Thankfully, James did a brilliant job, and we made it to Baits Bite lock and all the way into town without the engine stopping once, despite lots of rowers getting in the way. It was only the second time he'd wheel steered a boat as well. Hannah found the whole thing a bit stressful, but did enjoy steering her own boat for a while! We helped her moor up safely, said our goodbyes, and headed back out to the Duck to enjoy the rest of the weekend.
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