|This Month's Totals and Average|
|96.26 miles||41 locks||49.43 hrs||2.78 lmph|
We had a lazy start on a dull morning. Once ready, Pat walked into town to collect the mail, then to the pharmacy to get her meds, and did some shopping on the way back. We had then intended to move on after lunch, service and go to Kingsbury for the night.
Then the rain came on....
A very quiet afternoon relaxing over books, puzzles and knitting.
Yesterday's breeze, which had died down late evening, had increased again by morning. On the move by 09:30, continuing for Fazeley along the well-trodden path (well-sailed route?) through Polesworth, Alvecote, Amington and Glascote. Descended the two locks at Glascote, teaching a couple of newbies as we went. Continued through Kettlebrook and moored opposite the CRT yard for a late lunch and a quiet afternoon.
|6.68 miles||2 locks||3.25 hrs||2.67 lmph|
To allow time for a letter to arrive over the weekend, we elected to remain at Bridge 50 for Saturday. Mostly hot sunshine, but with a brisk breeze. Very busy with passing boats, unfortunately a lot of them failing to do the courtesy of slowing down past moored boats. Long catch-up phonecall with Fhi in Italy (who is now counting the days to her holiday with us ).
As agreed yesterday, I walked up to the King's Head pound to meet up with the team on "Joshua", and we (Sarah, me and Brian) were on the move shortly after 09:00. Phil joined us at the 1st lock, he and I assisted up the remaining 4 locks and they moored half way along the section between bridges 41 and 40. Matthew arrived after mooring. I left shortly after, and met Ann walking up from the train. Had great fun working with them, and look forward to meeting up again later in the year.
Having walked back to "Paws", we had lunch then set off down the remaining 2 locks, and round to Bradley Green for services. Once done, we continued round to one of our favourite moorings, at Bridge 50 (Meadow Lane).
A cloudy morning - better for locking - turned more sunny in the afternoon.
|1.65 miles||2 locks||1.22 hrs||3.00 lmph|
Ready to move off from our mooring at 09:30, but the volunteer lockie awaited the next boat coming up, causing about 20 mins delay in the downgoing queue. Eventually headed down, with a single-hander ahead so slower going (offset by a steady stream coming up so no need to turn locks round. Moored up in the King's Head pound (between 5 and 6) at 11:00.
Took a walk into town for stores and the sweetie shop and wool shop. Had lunch in Costa before returning to "Paws".
Moving onto our second leg of the day, the weather had turned hot and sunny. Descended the 1st four of the remaining locks. Pat decided we should call it a day rather than complete the flight, service and move on a further ½-hr, so we moored in the longer pound between 9 and 10.
Shortly after mooring, "Joshua" with Sarah and family (with Ann as extra crew) stopped for a brief chat. I volunteered to help them up to the King's Head pound - gratefully accepted. Always great to meet new BCF members. Once they were safely moored, I walked back to "Paws" for a slightly delayed dinner and quiet evening.
|1.48 miles||9 locks||2.93 hrs||3.57 lmph|
Another beautiful morning, with high wispy cloud. On the move earlier than we have been, after quieter than expected night. Continued south past Burton Hastings, Bramcote and Bulkington to Marston Junction. Turned right onto the Coventry Canal again and headed off northwards through Nuneaton. We saw a bat (unsure which kind) fluttering around as we approached one of the railway bridges on the north side - unusual in the daylight. Continued onwards into Atherstone. We were very lucky and managed to get moored just before the top lock as the moorings were very busy.
After a very pleasant day's cruising, the rain finally arrived late afternoon.
|13.37 miles||0 locks||5.33 hrs||2.51 lmph|
A beautiful sunny morning, after an exceptionally peaceful night. Workmen turned up around 07:30, and a workboat at 09:00. By 10:30, they had detached the trunk from the offside bank and had sawn it into slices, and the shrubby top on the nearside had been stripped and shredded.
We got clearance to move around 11:15 and were quickly on our way - a convoy of 10 boats heading south. Continued round past the location of the Battle of Bosworth Field to Sutton Cheney, where we stopped to purchase gelato from the boat-shop, then moved on again through Stoke Golding and into Hinckley. The visitor mooring at which we had hoped to stop was full, so we continued on till we passed under the A5 and moored up there.
The cloud built after lunch but, despite the increasing number of black clouds, it didn't actually rain.
|8.53 miles||0 locks||3.92 hrs||2.18 lmph|
After overnight rain, it cleared over breakfast. The "first thing" decision dwindled over the morning. Eventually, we got going and set out - freedom at last! Didn't last long. I had checked the CRT stoppages and there was a tree down at Bridge 57 (north of us) so got going, southwards. We got as far as Bridge 37 to find a (big) tree down - CRT had made a mistake with the number on their notice! Had to moor up, with the seven other boats, until CRT could get the tree cleared.
An engineer attended early afternoon and word came through that they would be out tomorrow, and hopefully have it cleared by the end of the day. Had a long chat with Kate from "Ask" (mostly about knitting!).
|1.35 miles||0 locks||0.83 hrs||1.62 lmph|
First thing Thursday morning, we did a car-shuffle to get Pat's car back to the marina. After that, I went to Willington for chandlery while Pat did a shopping in Sainsbury's before both returning individually to "Paws". A sunny day throughout.
Friday we did the remainder of the shopping including a trip to Sparkenhoe Farm for cheese, and lunch at their café, then collected a parcel. Cleared the rubbish and the loo - all ready to leave again. After a mostly sunny day, heavy rain showers arrived late afternoon. Had a long chat on the phone with Graham who intends to join us in Birmingham.
We had planned to move out again Saturday morning, but the heavy rain forced us to re-think. A generally quiet day, with the rain continuing all day.
Sunday was a far better day weatherwise. We had heard that The Jam Butty was to be in Alrewas. We also knew the church service was in the afternoon. Decided to take a quick trip over in the morning to get jam and chutney stores, then back for lunch and leave in the afternoon (rather than waste the morning and do it all in the afternoon). As it turned out, we went over, got the jams, returned and had lunch, then ended up not getting moving! Off tomorrow, first thing!
Managed to get on the move slightly quicker this morning, headed out through the northern suburb of Hinckley, past the Triumph motorcycle factory, then past Trinity Marina. A mixture of quality sunshine and heavy black clouds today - could be a fantastic day or deluge! Continued northwards for base. Moored outside Spinneybank Farm Shop for stores. The mooring was very busy.
Moved on again through Dadlington to Sutton Wharf where we moored again, at Floatie Oakie to buy gelato, but ended up having lunch there.
After lunch, we set off again for base, arriving just after 16:00. The black clouds never turned to rain, and the day ended nice and sunny.
|9.28 miles||0 locks||4.25 hrs||2.18 lmph|
A slow start to the day after a beautiful quiet night (we'll be using that mooring again!). The day started overcast with a thin layer of grey cloud, but dry and fresh. Finally got on the move after 10:00, continuing south to Marston Junction. Very busy at the junction, with boats coming from all three directions - felt like Spaghetti Junction! Finally sorted ourselves out, and we turned left onto the Ashby Canal, heading north towards base. Passed Bramcote and Burton Hastings and into Hinckley. Finally got our first sighting this year of a kingfisher. As the morning went on, the cloud built and we got light drizzle. Moored just past the Sea Scout hut and the Hinckley Arm for lunch.
After lunch, noted Helen on "Galliard" passing, but didn't get a chance to wave. By the time lunch was cleared away, the rain had come on heavy so we decided to stay put - bowhauled "Paws" to the end of the mooring (vacated by another boat over lunch), and cleared away the ropes etc.
|6.29 miles||0 locks||2.62 hrs||2.40 lmph|
A second quiet night with no trains, gave onto a fairly sunny morning. The admiral was slower than hoped in getting ready to move off, but we were away by 09:45, heading up the remaining five locks of the flight. Volunteers were out on 3 of the locks. As we ascended Top Lock, we had a moderate shower of rain, the first of a few during the day. Clearing the lock, we continued southwards for Hartshill. We were hailed by Jane from "Slow Gin" with the sad news that Colin had passed on recently. We chatted for a while before continuing. We hope to see her again later in the summer.
After taking on water at Hartshill, we again continued southwards through Nuneaton - more showers. We decided to moor just south of Bridge 17 to split up the remainder of the run to base.
Gwyneth and Stephen visited to deliver a polo-shirt for Fhi. Had a good catch-up. Later in the evening, we heard what we thought were foxes calling.
|8.18 miles||5 locks||4.32 hrs||3.05 lmph|
After a very quiet night (this mooring usually has a frequent train service past it, but they were on strike yesterday), we woke to a beautiful fresh, sunny morning. Took a walk to the other side of town for the service at Trinity Methodist Church. By the end of the service, there had been a downpour and we were delayed getting away. Stopped off at the Co-op on the way back, intending to move on after lunch.
Another downpour during lunch, and we decided to abort the plan and stay another night. Further heavy showers proved the decision to be right. Had a surprise visit late afternoon from Audrey from the church, who dropped in for a chat while out for a walk along the towpath.
A windy start, but without rain. Moved off at 09:45, heading round to the services at Bradley Green. Noted that Helen's boat "Galliard" had already left Grendon for her short break.
Once serviced, we continued to the bottom of the Atherstone flight and started upwards. All the locks were in our favour, the 1st three actually having boats coming out, so straight into the lock. A few dribbles of light rain, but nothing heavy or prolonged. Moored in the 'King's Head' pound for lunch, with the intention of nipping to the Co-op before continuing.
During lunch, we had heavy rain, with thunder. Decided we couldn't be bothered continuing, and the shopping could wait till tomorrow as we passed on the road back from church. Cleared away the ropes etc and settled in for the remainder of the day. Long catch-up video cll with daughter in Italy.
|2.72 miles||6 locks||2.13 hrs||4.09 lmph|
As predicted, this morning started with rain, and it continued throughout the day. Pat decided to wait until after lunch in case it slackened, but it didn't, so we stayed put rather than get soaked. Hopefully it will be better tomorrow.
A nice morning again, so up and ready as quickly as possible. Headed round through Kettlebrook and ascended the two locks at Glascote. Moored at Anchor Bridge 73 to enable a quick walk to the Co-op to send a parcel by Evri, then moved on again through Amington, Alvecote and Polesworth to our usual mooring at Meadow Lane Bridge 50. A very late lunch on arrival 14:00.
Heavy rain showers during the late afternoon, but we didn't get wet. That may change over the next few days if the forecast is right .
|6.53 miles||2 locks||3.40 hrs||2.51 lmph|
Up promptly, despite being happy to stay in bed. Managed to get on the move by 09:50, continuing back through Whittington. Made a brief stop at Helen's, then continued on through Hopwas to Bonehill, mooring at Sutton Road Bridge for lunch. A very busy morning with traffic, and there were few moorings in Hopwas. Lunch as soon as we were moored. The forecast heavy rain arrived just after we stopped.
After lunch, we walked down into Ventura retail park for stores. Pat caught what she said was cramp as we were walking back so was on the injury list for the remainder of the day. I brought "Paws" down through Fazeley Junction and onto the Coventry Canal (main line), mooring for the day opposite the CRT yard.
The sun came out again mid-afternoon and, apart from the downpour over lunch, it was quite a nice day.
|7.66 miles||0 locks||3.31 hrs||2.32 lmph|
A dull and (marginally) cooler morning today. Up promptly and on the move by 09:00, setting the washing machine to work while heading for Fradley. Ascended Bagnall and Common Locks, both against us, then Hunts and Keepers with the assistance of Volunteers. Had an unexpected meeting with Helen and Skye at Keepers Lock. Moored up opposite the services berth to wait for the washing machine finishing (to have a full water tank once serviced).
Once the washing machine finished, we walked round to The Laughing Duck again for lunch. After lunch, brought "Paws" across and did the servicing.
After servicing, we headed off again, ascending through Junction Lock with the aid of a Volunteer. Turned left onto the Coventry Canal (detached section) again, headed for Streethay.
Arriving outside Kings Orchard Marina, we moored up for the day - only just in time as the forecast heavy showers (with thunder and lightning) arrived as well. Managed to get safe before getting soaked.
|5.27 miles||5 locks||2.96 hrs||3.47 lmph|
Walked into the village Friday morning for butchery stores. Had a visit in the afternoon from Linda from the chapel. Mostly sunny.
Saturday was our wedding anniversary. The early sun rapidly gave way to cloud by breakfast, and rain by lunch. Very busy with traffic in both directions. Had a take-away from Delhi Divan . Just got back aboard before the heavens opened - thunder, lightning, hailstones bouncing off the cratch deck through the front doors, and bouncing from the roof under the hatch into the rear cabin.
Usual service at the chapel on Sunday morning. Angela and Linda visited in the afternoon. After a lovely sunny day, the cloud built again late afternoon with thunder rumbling by dinnertime and a little moderate rain (though nothing like yesterday).
Monday again dawned sunny, but again clouded over, with rain showers by lunchtime. Had a generally quiet day, with a phone catch-up with daughter in Italy.
The day started with beautiful sunshine. Took our time getting ready, but were away before 10:00, headed towards Fradley. Stopped at Streethay Wharf for a replacement gas bottle, then continued on through Fradley village to the Junction, turning right onto the Trent & Mersey Canal again. Dropped down through Junction Lock with the assistance of a Volunteer and moored up opposite the services for an early lunch at The Laughing Duck (take away snacks, canalside seating, card payment only). Cloud building rapidly over lunchtime.
After lunch, we took "Paws" across to the services berth and did the usual things. Heavy rain came on while servicing.
The rain stopped as we finally finished (very slow tap), and we moved on down the four locks to Alrewas (volunteers' lunchtime so no assistance). Arriving in Alrewas, I turned "Paws" while Pat found a mooring in the 14-day section (last one!), and we tied up for the weekend at 14:45. It remained dull with occasional sunny spells for the rest of the day.
|5.50 miles||5 locks||3.25 hrs||3.23 lmph|
A lie-in after Pat's long drive yesterday. Once up, said our goodbyes and thanks to Helen before she went out, then finished the unpacking and clearing from yesterday. Eventually on the move at 11:00, heading round to King's Orchard for the rest of the day. Moored up at 11:45 and had lunch.
Phonecall with a catch-up from Fhi in Italy, with new details for the family history project. Pat spent the afternoon baking for the weekend. Had to change the gas bottle before going to bed to permit coffee with breakfast.
A mixture of weather - from heavy cloud to bright sunshine - with a brisk wind throughout.
|1.63 miles||0 locks||0.78 hrs||2.08 lmph|
A sunny start to the day, with a light breeze. Awake early with 'check-ins' from family on the move - Kenney and family took off for Disneyland Paris around 05:30 (landing 08:30), and Pat left the house 06:15 for her drive south. I spent the first half of the morning starting to convert the BCF banner mountings (solar panels in the way), followed by dropping in on the e-coffee at Doncaster for a catch-up (Fhi not there due another commitment, Pat was driving).
After the on-line meeting, I had lunch and prepared to relocate "Paws" for collecting Pat. The cloud had built, and the wind had increased again. Let go and continued south past Huddlesford Junction and through Whittington to Tamhorn Farm to wind. Turned round and returned to Whittington "the right way round", mooring at Helen's garden again. The trip was far slower than I expected due to the reed situation and moored boats, and Pat had actually arrived before me (she had been forced to change her route due to an accident on the motorway, and did her shopping in Rugeley rather than Tamworth).
Pat decided we would stay put for the night rather than returning to Streethay so we cleared down the boat, and got her unpacked. A quiet evening.
|4.82 miles||0 locks||2.03 hrs||2.37 lmph|
Pat had intended to drive south again today, but woke with a migraine so unfit to drive. As I was awake anyway, I decided to continue as planned at this end, and got on the move early, heading back up through Bagnall, Common, Hunts and Keepers Locks to Fradley. Volunteers on both Hunts and Keepers. Quite windy today, and Common Lock had its usual crosswind causing problems. Very busy both ways, but I made good time to Fradley. Services berth also busy so moored opposite. While waiting for the washing machine to finish and the services berth to clear, I managed to get the broken horn replaced - when I striped it down, I found the cause, a spider had made a very comfortable nest inside. Also managed to run the jury-rig to test the new modem at the other end of the boat - seems good so will have to make it more permanent at some point.
Had an early lunch then got the services done, and set off again, up Junction Lock (last boat before the volunteers went for lunch). Turned left onto the Coventry Canal and continued back through Fradley village to Streethay, where I stopped for fuel.
After fuelling, moved ahead and moored outside King's Orchard Marina for the day. I tried to get in to the chandlery, but they appear not to have a public entrance unless you either take a boat inside or walk round the roads at the next bridge. Didn't bother, and retired back aboard to get the diary and e-paperwork up to date.
Very windy throughout, cloudy with sunny spells and occasional spots of rain. A heavier shower in the evening cleared the air, the wind dropped and produced a lovely sunny close to the day.
|5.32 miles||5 locks||2.90 hrs||3.56 lmph|
Remained moored in Alrewas for the weekend. Assisted at the church with their contribution to the town's 'Open Gardens' Festival both days. Communion service on Sunday.