We have decided to sell Waka Huia. When we first decided to buy a narrowboat, after 23 years of hiring for holidays, we saw it as a 5 to 10 year adventure. When the five years was up, we were definitely not of a mind to sell. In part our thinking had been that at the 10 year mark, our Scotland-based grandsons would be almost 19 and 14 and would no longer be so attracted to spending their holidays with us. For a couple of years during Covid when their dad lived onboard, they spent a lot of time on Waka Huia. So the attraction has been well and truly fulfilled for them, we think. Our son lives in Bulgaria now and is not keen at all on coming back to have time on the boat - he had his fill during the Covid years.
Also, we miss NZ winters and we miss our NZ family and friends. I in particular miss my walks with Ann Persico - with Ann walking in Stoke and me walking in Waikanae, connected by WhatsApp phone calls chatting our respective ways around our neighbourhoods. And I miss seeing spring in NZ - during the 3 years we could not travel I realised how much beauty we miss being away from the flowering magnolias and rhododendrons.
After 10 years of owning her, we think it's time we spent more time exploring the parts of Aotearoa New Zealand that 2IJ have seen but we have not! And in the 6 years we have owned our motorhome, we have not yet managed to find the time to go up to Northland ... We really do have to put as much serious time into discovering NZ as we have into exploring the beautiful canal system here in England.
However, notwithstanding the pull of exploring more of NZ, Waka Huia is a wonderful boat and we have had lots of fabulous fun and we've met some amazing people. We are sad about letting her go, but it's time.
So if you or anyone you know would love to own her, get in touch by leaving me a comment, please! 😃
Waka Huia vital statistics:
- Length: 62 feet (almost 19 metres)
- Hull: by Mick Cull
- Steel: 10mm/6mm/4mm
- Fit out in oak by original owner
- Year of build: 1996
- Stern: Semi-trad
- Engine: Lister Petter 36hp
- Berths: 5
- Layout: Reverse layout, so from the stern:
- Outside space:
- Stern deck with canvas pramcover - new in 2023
- Forward well deck with seats with lockers under, a fold down table, and canvas cratch cover - new in 2019
The boat was built in 1996 and is still in excellent condition - not just for her age, but in general. John and Trish who had the hull built and did the internal fitout did a fabulous job, and looked after her with great care. David and I have continued that, making sure there is no degradation internally or externally.
Hence the work that is going in now to make her ready for sale. Given we were last onboard in 2019, the deferred maintenance has now been undertaken - in large part through the efforts and kindness of Ian and Irene Jameison on nb Free Spirit - two wonderful friends. And also in large part through the skill of Ed Shiers of Four Counties Marine - an amazing man I have blogged about often.
Thursday 14/09: I have now posted photos - but when I wrote this I had to wash the roof so we could get on with the painting. And before I could do any painting, we had to cruise from outside the Braunston tunnel up Watford Locks to a suitably shady mooring - the batteries needed to be topped up and there was almost NO sunshine there on the Norton junction side of the tunnel! That was fabulous in the previous day's afternoon's heat, but not so good for batteries...