We had lowered the mast and secured everything after we arrived at Gravesend so we were all set to head back up river. Sally helped Steve raise the anchor and we set of a couple of hours before low water to get the maximum benefit of the tide that would take us all the way up to Teddington. We crossed to the correct side of the river and we motored up past Tilbury, keeping outside the main shipping channel. Even though it was close to low water there were still ships moving around and we had to pay close attention to the radio. We pulled out towards the centre of the river to make room for a coaster that was just pulling away from his berth, and received a cheery wave from the captain up in his wheelhouse.
The weather was changing and we no longer had the blue skies that we had enjoyed earlier in the voyage. By the time we reached the Woolwich Barrier the sky was looking ominous and the wind was increasing all the time.
We had a very windy passage up through London, with a couple of very heavy downpours, which Sally managed to avoid as they occurred while she was resting below. At one point the driving rain was so hard I could only see by putting my hand over my face to protect my eyes. As the wind was on the nose for much of the time and the tide was behind us it was also quite choppy with spray often breaking over the bows.
Although it was still breezy the weather calmed down as we passed through central London and we had a pleasant cruise up to Teddington.
Just like when we set out we had to wait for the tidal barrier at Richmond to open. By this time there was very little tide running and we were able to hold station just upstream of the moorings at Thisleworth. After passing through the still dripping barrier we carried on to Teddington and moored up just above the lock. We were pleasantly surprised to see Maxime, an historic Dutch motor barge that is usually moored at Hermitage just below Tower Bridge. Steve cooked a tasty dish and we had a drink to celebrate a successful trip, and the fact the we were safely tucked up on the non tidal river.