On this 'canal-boat' trip, I've traveled about 200 yards on a canal - the beginning of the Grand Union canal to Cotton End wharf. All the rest was river.
What a difference already: the lock was easy-peasy. It's like taking off your lead boots, and springing about oh-so-lightly.
It was lovely on Saturday to meet a couple on the bank a few locks down the river. You could see they weren't just the ordinary gawker.
They explained they were canal people and they were thinking about coming up to the river but wanted to recce it first by car. They were thinking, (just thinking, mind) about going on the river because it was getting so busy on the canal (near Braunston). Chap told me sometimes you had to wait 20 minutes before you could get out (into the traffic, I presume).
As a complete newbie, I don't really have anything much to say on the pro's and con's of river/canal, but I think I said the right thing by enthusing over the nature on the river.
Just a bit worried that I might have said the wrong thing by explaining the bankside tension due to the contretemps with another boat (see below). They might think that we river people are a bunch of uptight, uncouth lunatics.