Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Back home

Autumn scene just beyond Fradley

After packing whilst moored at Fradley we set off at 9:40 and arrived at the marina at 11:30 after a pleasant autumnal day, seeing another kingfisher en route.  By 2pm we were back home home.

More voyages next year!!

Overall journey statistics:
38 hours travelling in 13 days
82.58 miles
48 locks

Statistcs for 2016
233 hours travelling in 72 days
439.82 miles
336 locks
16 moveable bridges

Monday, 31 October 2016

Our final full day

We awoke early as we are still on BST to a misty still morning.  Such mornngs often make for atmospheric photographs so here's a couple.

Densie moored at Branston

The island at Branston Water Park

We left Branston at 9:30 and cruised steadily along this pleasant canal in the mist which cleared by mid-morning resulting in sunny and unseasonally warm weather.  After 8 locks and nearly 7 miles we reached Fradley Juction at 1:30 and have moored up for the day.

We plan to arrive back at our marina tomorrow morning and so the final blog entry for this year should ne online tomorrow or the day after.

Sunday, 30 October 2016

Branston, where the pickle comes from

Last night we ate out again, at the Dragon Inn in Willington.  It's the first time we had been there and I am sure we will go again.  The food was very good - I had some halibut off the a la carte menu whilst Denise had fish and chips.

This morning we awoke to find the fire still alight and the boat warm.  The weather outside was much like yesterday's - very damp without actually raining.  Before setting off we walked to the local Coop supermarket to buy a few groceries.  On our return to the boat at 10am we left Willington and cruised back through Burton upon Trent arriving at the good moorings at Branston Water Park at 1pm.  The weather was drier but much colder.  As there aren't any further good moorings for some time we have decided to stay here until tomorrow. 

Saturday, 29 October 2016


After my comments yesterday about keeping our fire alight I am embarrassed to report that it went out overnight.  Fortunately the weather this morning was surprisingly warm, but this was spoilt by it being dark and damp - no real rain, just dampness condensing out of the air onto the boat.  Today was a routine journey, starting at 10am and moving continuously until we reached Willington at 2:30.  We ascended the 3 big locks at Weston, Swarkestone and Stenson without any difficulty, this needs some experience to avoid the force of the incoming water throwing the boat around from one side of the lock to the other.  Just before Stenson, Denise saw a kingfisher, but I missed it as I was preparing lunch.

Friday, 28 October 2016

Return to the Trent & Mersey

Following Serenity off the Trent to Derwent Mouth Lock.
We awoke to find our fire was still alight for the third morning running so after 10 years boating it looks like we have finally cracked the technique.  Our problem right now is that the saloon is very warm with the thermometer showing 23 degC - unfortunately you cant really turn a coal fire down.

We left our mooring on the Trent at 11am and cruised up the river to Sawley Lock where again a volunteer was on hand to operate it.  We stopped at Sawley for lunch and then visited the chandlery for some more smokeless "coal" and an LED light for one of our wall lamps.  Back on the move again at 1pm we left Sawley just behind narrowboat Serentity who we followed for the short journey up the Trent again to Derwent Lock which we ascended together off the river onto the Trent & Mersey Canal near Shardlow.

Another couple of locks and 2 miles of canal took us to our moorings just past Aston Lock arriving at 3pm.

Thursday, 27 October 2016

On our way home

This walk starts with a tricky climb

Approaching Cransfleet Lock from the Trent
A speedy escape when the Trent floods?
 Time to go home.  We dont need to get back too quickly so we didnt set off until 10:40.  Then along the Nottingham & Beeston Canals through Beeston Lock where we were able to ascend wth another boat.  This took us up to the Trent where we continued upstream so the speed was noticeably slower than on our journey into Nottingham.  We left the river at Cransfleet Lock, again with this other boat.  The lock  takes the navigation through Cransfleet Cut avoiding a weir.  We moored at 2pm at the junction of the Cut back with the river.

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Third day in Nottingham

Looking towards Castle Look - new and old buildings line the canal

A mandarin duck in the canal

Densie moored outside Sainsbury's
 We are still moored in Nottingham though we did a short journey today to go down Castle Lock, turn round, back up Castle Lock and to moor again near Sainsbury's as we needed some groceries for the journey home.

On, Tuesday, our first night here we went to The Olde Trip To Jerusalem for some good food and to sample some of their wide range of small brewery beers, very nice they were.  Densie particularly enjoyed her glasses of Mild, a beer style not often found these days.  Yesterday evening we went to our favourite Indian restaurant.  Sadly the food was some way from the previous excellent standard.  So probably off our list now.

We will start our return cruise tomorrow morning, fortunately the weather forecast continues to look good.