Boating through the Seasons

We are now officially in Winter, which means we have covered all four seasons with Fantine! Never one to shy a way from stretching a blog post out of nothing it’s only right I cover the four seasons of Boat life, with our highlights and lowlights of the seasons.

(Apologies for the length of this post, I promise a good majority of it is pictures, but you may want to grab a mulled wine to help you through it none the less, it is December after all).



We began the reality of Living Narrow in Spring so this was the beginning of our Boating Experience.

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  • Babies! You start to get baby animals appearing, nothing beats ducklings and cygnets. Prepare for some serious heart melting.
  • Everywhere is starting to blossom and feel green again after the dreary greyness of winter.


  • It’s midday somewhere, but the slight tinge of cold and unexpected April showers make having an outside beer feel wholly inappropriate.



We can now be considered sort of Boaty (Not at all), we definitely picked the best time to start, Spring and Summer being your first experience really makes a difference.

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  • Sun, Water, Boat, Beer, enough said really.
  • No real rain means no real mud, which means a relatively clean boat.


  • Spiders … Everywhere … Literally everywhere and of a size straight out of a nuclear experiment gone wrong!
  • It’s hot, I hate moaning about any weather, we are so lucky with our seasons, but crikey summer gets hot aboard.
  • It’s like the M25 on a Friday evening, the waterways that is, become busier than a major road network, made all the more terrifying thanks to the tirade of hire boats.



Oh the comforting snuggle of Autumn, 70% beautiful sunsets, 30% debating whether it’s too soon to light a fire.

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  • You get to light your stove (If you don’t mind being judged by proper boaty folk).
  • The sunrises/sunsets are beyond beautiful.


  • It’s starting to get a little bit chillier, and drinks outside become a rare treat.
  • You need to start worrying about buying fire wood, or coal eurgh!



For the sake of all that is boaty thank the heavens we didn’t start our life aboard in winter. *Spoiler* it isn’t fun.

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  • It is kind of pretty.
  • Snow insulates.
  • You get to spend 70% of your wages on fuel for your greedy Hobbit stove.
  • Getting back to your boat, feels like actual hibernation, warm, cosy, and relax.
  • When the canals freeze you get to play snowball or pebble bowls on the ice!


  • It’s cold, and damp, and though your boat is tiny, when you first get home it’s arctic until the fire gets going.
  • You risk frostbite if you go slipperless (Boat floors are not forgiving in any season, least of all winter).
  • Mud … everywhere.

So there you have it, a little view of the boaty seasons. Honestly I am so glad we moved aboard in Spring, it meant we got to fall in love with boat life long before the dread of Winter set in.

James & Kirsty


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