Join us on our travels around Europe aboard our Dutch Tjalk Francoise

  • Jill Budd

    After 6 years aboard our Narrowboat Matilda Rose in the UK, we took the plunge and shipped her across to Europe. After 2 years in Europe we knew we didn't want to return to the UK so took the plunge and purchased a 1902 20 mtr Dutch Tjalk called Francoise and are now continuing our travels of the waterways of Europe in a buxom wench

  • May 2016
    M T W T F S S
  • Meta

St Bouize and St Satur/St Thibault/Sancerre (mon 16/05 to 21/05)

Posted by contentedsouls on 30/05/2016

4 locks, 22kms and 9 hours (including shopping and re-fuelling)

St Bouize was one of those idyllic stops for us; perfect for the menagerie, lots of lovely walking alongside tiny rivers and an all things to all people bar/traiteur/depot du pain/epicerie, although we neither ate nor drank there.

Any of you that have met Muttley will know that ‘brave little soldier’ he aint and he did have a small misfortune. One shouldn’t laugh, but it was extremely funny poor sausage. He ran ahead of me onto a track which suddenly had low level electric fencing on either side – he put his nose on the live fence, screamed like a stuck pig, jumped backwards and then got a belt off of the other side straight up the bum. At this point he took off vertically and then came down in the middle of the track and refused to move, still screaming at the top of his voice – poor dog was traumatised for at least 5 minutes.


We expected to spend a few days in the Sancerre region and we spied our first decent sized supermarket in quite awhile. G hacked down some undergrowth and managed to get Francoise in and secured right across the road. By the time we’d sorted ourselves out though, guess what? Yep – closed for lunch. We dodged the traffic and re-fuelled main tank, genny and spare cans at the self-service (doesn’t close for lunch) and re-provisioned. The fuel strike was unknown at that point ,but we have not heard of any boaters having problems – it seems to just be motorways.


We found a good mooring without going into the 10 euro a night rubbish port – made even worse by road works in St Thibault causing traffic to divert passed the end of the ganplanks’ of the boats in the port. There were some sad sights in that port, particularly an aptly named narrowboat. Once again the walking in the area was brilliant, with access to the Loire.


We had lunch out in St Thibault on Thursday and contemplated how we were going to get up to Sancerre (that’s it; 4km up that hill – definitely NOT bikling country). Problem solved when Kevin and Debs turned up and stayed overnight, taking us up to Sancerre for a bit of sight seeing – you can’t come to this area and not visit. As Kevin had climbed the tower before, we left them too it whilst we huffed and puffed our way to the top – fortunately the cloud had lifted enough to make the climb worthwhile.


My three wise monkeys couldn’t even manage to get themselves in the right order – what a bunch!


We were all tickled by the loos at the restaurant where we had lunch – it was clearly meant for hobbits – the door came to somewhere around my armpits and it wasn’t a lot bigger inside.


Our visitors left Friday ready to pick up their canopy, which was being repaired up the road a bit, and return to their own boat. So I fitted in a bit more countryside before we moved on.


I don’t know if you remember, but there was another of these boats (apparently stranded) outside Never with no obvious way of reaching shore. I know I have some clever readers and I wonder if any of you know anything about these craft. At our next mooring there was something similar on the bank which allowed me to take a closer look.


9 Responses to “St Bouize and St Satur/St Thibault/Sancerre (mon 16/05 to 21/05)”

  1. Ray & Leonie said

    Awesome photos, beautiful area. France is the best Country hands down for scenery,lifestyle both boating & motorhomes.


  2. Kevin TOO said

    Excellent photography as usual 🙂
    I’m so sorry Muttley, it’s took me ages to stop laughing, how shocking 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  3. paula said

    Poor old Mutley. Bless him. You made a very wise decision not to do the Nivernais, we are flooded again. All stopped up here.


    • Same here Paula, plus the breach just North of Briare. I suspect we will be able to move again before you – only back the way we’ve come though!


      • paula said

        We’ve been saying how wise you both were taking the decision not to come uo the Nivernais. There’s a reservoir on the top that usually off loads at 10-14 cubic meters per second but it’s dangerously full at mo and they have started emptying it ar 60 cubic meters per second. Yesterday the flow rate at Auxerre was astonishing. We are starting to wonder if we need to think about rerouting to our winter mooring in Roanne but now the Bourgogne is breached at Tonerre. Keep safe, hope Mutley and his new Yorkshire Terrier friend have fun.


  4. andywindy said

    I like your 3 Monkeys, though I suspect they are all Three fibbing. Debbie not see what’s going on, Kevin not listening to Debbie and Graham keeping quiet? WHO do they think they’re kidding?
    I think those boats were originally for placing and then hauling fishing nets to and from the river mid stream as the horizontal rollers with the capstain winch holes in are suited to the task. The modern Fishing boats (Trawlers) sometimes use steel rollers driven by hydraulics for the same purpose out at sea, so the theory holds up, but I’d be delighted to be proven wrong if somebody comes up with anything better!
    Poor Muttley, reminds me of Schooldays and going on a sponsered orienteering course with an Army cadet who thought he could, but couldn’t read a map, an electric fence (about 2 1/2 ft high) pouring rain Oh and it was eveningtime. He never boasted about his prowess again, and his first serious girlfriend went and told all the girls in school that electricity has a shrinking effect! Poor Pete.


    • I agree;they picked their own roles but not very plausible.
      Thank you for the info on the Loire boats – your explanation seems more than plausible. I still can’t find out why there are some dotted around mid-stream and how/why they are accessed.
      I feel quite sorry for Army Cadet Pete; he was probably mentally, if not physically, scarred for life.

      I hope the BFGs are not disappointing.

      Liked by 1 person

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