Sunday, 30 August 2015

On To Fradley Junction And Beyond

Saturday morning the sun was with us when we set off on a very nice cruise. Quite a lot of boats about today must be the bank holiday bringing them out. Its good to be cruising along at a steady pace. We are making our way to great Haywood Marina for Monday as our son Justin and Grandson Hudson are visiting for a few days. We are really excited that they are coming. So we cruised up to Snobnall marina for the evening as I wanted to have a look at some things in the chandlery. Nice moorings for the evening.
Small Bridges 

Single Locks Again
Sunday we woke to overcast skies and head of early to get as far as we could today. We cruised on to Alrewas what a really popular place as there was no moorings there at all.

Art Work For Alrewas 
We had quite a few locks to do today and as its a bank holiday weekend Sunday there were lots of boats waiting at the locks but we made good progress and soon arrived at Fradley Junction where the Coventry canal joins the Trent & Mersey. Fradley Junction is very busy with sightseers and other canal boats it really is a very nice place to visit.
Left Turn On To Coventry Canal

The Swan At Fradley Junction

We will most likely be coming back to Fradley Junction and turning down the Coventry Canal later in our year out. We still had a little way to travel this afternoon after Fradley Junction and as we moored up it started to rain so we have avoided the rain today.

Time Travelled Saturday 3 Hrs  Distance Travelled  6 Miles. 1 Lock
Time Travelled Sunday 8 Hrs Distance Travelled 12.5 miles 13 Locks.

Total Distance Travelled 736. Miles 
207 Locks (Broad ) 253 single locks and 18 tunnel's, 10 Massive Lock
Total Tunnel length 10707 yards   
Total Time 371.5 hours  

We Are Loving It so Much

Friday, 28 August 2015

Hello's And Goodbye's

We left Beeston on a windy but sunny Thursday morning heading towards Shardlow. We will be off the River Trent today its been a very enjoyable experience. So a very nice cruise to Shardlow where we meet up with Mike & Karel and there granddaughter Jessie on their narrow boat Jessie May.
So we Joined the Trent & Mersey canal after coming through the Sawley lock..

Willow Tree's on The Trent

Bridge 1 Trent & Mersey

We are both very excited as we have some friends from Suffolk visiting us and first to arrive was Roger his lovely wife Anita and their daughter Ellen who have just a very enjoyable time on N/B Dragonfly. They will be joining us for a meal tonight at the New Inn.

Roger, Anita & Ellen
We were soon joined by Phil & Malcolm who were in the area so had decided to visit us. Phil & Malcolm stayed for quite a while then we had to say goodbye to them both which was a bit sad as we have missed them and their  lovely wives  . We will be seeing them again soon we hope.
Phil & Malcolm
We then went to the New Inn for a meal with Roger, Anita & Ellen, Mike, Karel and Jessie also Gerry & Honor who we have been traveling with since Liverpool. A very enjoyable meal was had and a great evening was had by all. It was a sort of celebration evening as it is Sharon’s Birthday Friday and Mike & Karel’s wedding anniversary the same day.

The evening was also tinged with sadness as this is the last evening we will spend with Gerry & Honor. They are a great couple and we have really enjoyed our time with them, thanks Gerry for guiding us along the River Trent because if you had not so kindly offered to show us the way we would not have done it so a big THANKS.
Gerry & Honor
Also thanks to Roger, Anita & Ellen along with Phil & Malcolm for visiting us, Sharon says a big thank you for her Birthday Presents you all are truly great friends we are so lucky to have you in our lives.

So Tonight we are moored by bridge 21 on the Trent & Mersey Canal after a lovely cruise. We have had sun all day but a bit windy which has kept us nice and cool whilst cruising.
Jessie May leads The Way
Blue Skies & Cows

Time Travelled Thursday 4 Hrs  Distance Travelled  8 Miles. 4 Locks
Time Travelled Friday 5.5 Hrs Distance Travelled 10 miles 4 Lock.

Total Distance Travelled 727.5 Miles 
207 Locks (Broad ) 239 single locks and 18 tunnel's, 10 Massive Lock
Total Tunnel length 10707 yards   
Total Time 360.5 hours  

We Are Loving It so Much

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Friends Visit

Monday morning we were greeted by a wet morning but by 10.00 it had stopped and the sun was out. We were moored at Torskey last night. The lock keeper had told us the the River was low but as we set off and turned on to the Trent it soon became very clear just how low it was. So it was steady going keeping to the deepest water we could find.
Not a lot of Water In The River

In To Cromwell Lock

We arrived at Cromwell Lock the end of the Tidal Trent and once through this massive lock the Trent becomes non-tidal but it does have a flow on it which is against us all the way. When in the lock the skies opened and it absolutly poured down all the way to the next lock which was 2 miles away we did get a bit wet that afternoon. we moored at NewarkNether lock for the evening

Tuesday morning the rain had stopped so we went through the lock and made our way to Newark On Trent as we need to get some provisions. So we moored near Newark castle and off to Morrisons.

Newark castle

After a successful shop we set off again heading towards Gunthorpe. We are meeting some very dear friends there David & Lorraine,
We spent a lovely time with them both and were very pleased that they had managed to visit us. They also brought some lovely things from there butcher for us and a really nice bowl painted in canal ware art and in the same colours as Tacet, thank you both very much see you later in the Year.

Wednesday we set off for Nottingham. We would be back on the canal system through Nottingham and had a really enjoyable cruise through there.

We planned to moor at Beeston for the evening and as we arrived we received a phone call from Mike who we met whilst on the Llangollen Canal. Mike was with his good lady Karel and their grand daughter Jessie and helped us through the lock back on to the River Trent. Where we moored for the evening. Whilst there I had a call from  Roger who has just had a holiday on N/B Dragonfly he and his lovely wife Anita and their daughter will be visiting us tomorrow,. Earlier in the day our friend Louise called and we have arranged to meet her husband Phil tomorrow as he is in the area. Phil is bringing Malcolm another one of our friends with him.

Time Travelled Monday 4.5 Hrs  Distance Travelled  18 Miles. 2 Locks
Time Travelled Tuesday 5.5 Hrs Distance Travelled 14.5 miles 1 Lock.
Time Travelled Wednesday 7 Hrs Distance Travelled 12 Miles 5 Locks

Total Distance Travelled 709.5 Miles 
199 Locks (Broad )239 single locks and 18 tunnel's, 10 Massive Lock
Total Tunnel length 10707 yards   
Total Time 360.5 hours  

We Are Loving It so Much

Monday, 24 August 2015

On To The Tidal River Trent

We left Thorne mid-morning, the sun was shining and we had lovely blue skies. We cruised along at a nice steady pace and enjoyed the wonderful views. Sharon got really excited as all the trip she has been looking for a combine harvester to take a picture of as a friend of hers Sue's partner Malcolm has a liking for them. So we took a picture of the harvester cutting wheat for Malcolm.

There are a lot of wind turbines along this stretch of canal and most were spinning in the breeze we wondered why some were not rotating. There is also a train line running next to the canal most of the way.

The Weed  got ThickerThe canal has started to bloom with a floating weed and as we made are way to Keadby it got thicker and thicker.
As we approached Keadby the train line crosses the canal so we had to wait for the signalman in the box to do move the railway line, this involves a section of the track sliding to the side it is a wonderful bit of engineering.
Green With Weed

Rail Track Sliding Closed

So we waited for the track to be moved, as you can see the weed is very thick and it took a little effort to push through this but we did and moored at very nice spot for the afternoon. It has been very hot and humid today and as we sat in the shade of a tree the ice-cream van stopped in the car park so we both had a well-deserved ice-cream.

This morning after a chat with the lock-keeper who controls the lock on to the Tidal River Trent Tacet and the Great Escape made their way through the lock and on to the river all a bit scary as this is a new experience for us all aboard Tacet, Eddy did not seem to concerned as, as usual he was asleep on the futon.
The Great Escape & Tacet In Keadby Lock
The cruise along the river is fast for a narrowboat and with the tide pushing us we were doing nearly 6 MPH. Cruising the Trent is an enjoyable experience with some nice views, some interesting buildings and bridges.

Lift Bridge On The Left Hand Side

Large Open Water

Could Be The Orwell Bridge But It's Not It's The M180

Castle Or Manor House Ruins

The Great Escape With Power Station
We turned on to the Fossdyke Navigation and moored for the evening, this navigation would take us in to Lincoln but we don’t have time this trip which is a shame maybe another year??.

Time Travelled Saturday 4. Hrs  Distance Travelled  9 Miles.
Time Travelled Sunday  4.5 Hrs Distance Travelled  26 miles 1 Lock.

Total Distance Travelled 665 Miles 
191 Locks (Broad )239 single locks and 18 tunnel's, 10 Massive Lock
Total Tunnel length 10707 yards   
Total Time 343.5 hours  

We Are Loving It so Much

Friday, 21 August 2015

On To Thorne

We had a late start on Thursday and waited for the sun to come out, we had another great cruising day with some very nice scenery. We would be soon turning off the Aire & Calder Navigation which was one of the last canals constructed. The turn on to New Junction is a very sharp right hand turn but as the A & C is so wide it was easy to do. New Junction canal is a completely straight canal and has a lock with a swing bridge in the middle of it this was a very interesting lock/bridge to operate.
Skyehouse Lock & Swing Bridge
On The A & C

We moored near the junction of Stainforth & Keadby canal at very nice moorings.

Nice Pub But We Did Not Stop

Under the M18

Look At Me I Have Nearly Got My Swan White Wings
Friday we moved off and through the first lock and the second lock and enjoyed a really nice gentle cruise up to Thorne as Gerry and Honor need diesel for The Great Escape. We waited at the lock for them and then cruised up to the Canal & River Trust Moorings which have all the facilities we need. We had a walk around Thorne and found Sainsbury’s so topped up are supplies.

Time Travelled Thursday 3. Hrs  Distance Travelled  6 Miles 2 Locks.
Time Travelled Friday  4 Hrs Distance Travelled  7 miles 2 massive Locks.

Total Distance Travelled 630. Miles 
190 Locks (Broad )239 single locks and 18 tunnel's, 10 Massive Lock
Total Tunnel length 10707 yards   
Total Time 335 hours  

We Are Loving It so Much

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Aire & Calder Massive Locks

We woke on Tuesday morning to very heavy rain which was not forecast for the day. However by 9.30 the rain had turned in to just a drizzle so we untied and headed out of Leeds through the very last lock on the Leeds & Liverpool canal and on to the Aire & Calder Navigation which is a river navigation. So all of a sudden we were on to very wide water. We stopped to fill with water and to get rid of rubbish and complete other task’s
Modern Buildings
Old Mill Buildings

Some of the bridges we went under are very ornate and still look wonderful some are just concrete and look rather drab.

Very Ornate Iron Work
Old Iron Bridge

The locks on the Aire & Calder are massive and are all mechanically operated so very easy to use. The locks could quite easily accommodate around 12 narrow-boats so with just Tacet and The Great Escape in the locks the boats looked tiny.

The rain got harder so as we approached Lemonroyd lock we decided to moor for the evening which was a good thing to do for as soon as we had tied up the rain absolutely bucketed down.

Wednesday morning we opened the curtains to lovely blue skies and made our way in to the lock which has a drop of 13 ft 6 inches and we set off for the days cruising.

Lemonroyd lock Full

Lemonroyd Lock Full

Sharon Leaving Lemonroyd Lock
The river has some interesting views from old coal mines, working coal mines and Power stations. 
Ferrybridge Power Station

Wide Water & Railway Line

We have really enjoyed cruising the Aire & Calder Navigation so far and our still heading towards Keadby Lock for Saturday as we are booked to head on to the River Trent on Sunday.
We cruised on and have moored at a little village called Pollington and a very nice village it is as well.

Time Travelled Tuesday 3.5 Hrs  Distance Travelled 6 Miles 5 Massive Locks Locks 1 Small Lock.
Time Travelled Wednesday 5 Hrs Distance Travelled  14 miles 4 massive Locks.

Total Distance Travelled 617. Miles 
186 Locks (Broad )239 single locks and 18 tunnel's, 10 Massive Lock
Total Tunnel length 10707 yards   
Total Time 328 hours  

We Are Loving It so Much


Monday, 17 August 2015

Rodley, Appley Bridge And Into Leeds

Saturday we were up nice and early for a leisurely start to the day and planned an easy day up to Rodley. We completed the 3 Fields Locks and a gentle cruise on to the next pair of locks which are right by a CRT maintenance yard at Apperley Bridge. So we filled with water and completed other abolitions whilst there. 
We had a chat with a CRT man who advised us not to moor anywhere near Newley 3 locks as kids have been causing lots of problems there and it’s not a safe place to moor. So on his advice we continued with the cruise up to a large village called Rodley and moored there.
Rodley Our Moorings For The Evening
Apperley Bridge

Tacet & The Great Escape
I took a walk in to the village to get a newspaper and although the village is a really nice village it is missing shops but I did manage to get a paper. That evening we were joined by Many Meetings who we had passed many times. Robin & Marion are going to follow us to the Newley Locks and on in to Leeds. We decide an early start would be a good idea so we get in to Leeds before any of the troublesome kids are up.

Sunday all 3 boats set off at 8.00 towards Newley locks where 2 very helpful lock keepers helped us through the locks, at this point we had to leave The Great Escape as a single boat was at the locks so we had to join them and go down the remainder of the locks.

It was nice to meet Dave & Jan and there boat Yes Dear and had a very nice cruise into Leeds although the canal has loads of rubbish in it, it did not cause us any problems but another boat a rather large fiberglass boat had picked up a kiddies tripper on his propeller and could not get it off. 

We did not encounter any problems with Kids on the way in but there was plenty of evidence along the towpath of them being there. It is such a pity that the Kids have to cause so much destruction to property. Maybe there is nothing for them to do in the area so this is away of expressing themselves.

We got to office Lock the penultimate  lock on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal and found some nice moorings in Granary Wharf where all 4 boats are moored together that being Tacet, The Great Escape, Many Meetings & Yes Dear a good end to a good day.
Many Meetings, Yes Dear, Tacat And The Great Escape

Tacet And The Great Escape

Canal Office But Now A Recruitment Office
On Sunday evening we set about bottling the red wine we have made, it smells really good, we have produced 21 lts so that should save us a few pounds. It tastes good but will improve with age we hope.
Sharon & A Few of Our Bottled Red Wine (Photo Taken By Robin off Many Meetings)
We said our goodbyes to Robin & Marion off Many Meetings as they headed off at 10.00. 
Robin has flown a Spitfire aeroplane which is based at Bentwaters in Suffolk and is part of the Grace project.

So since leaving Liverpool on the 27th July and travelling on the Leeds & Liverpool canal we have travelled 127 ¾ Miles and been through 91 Broad Locks.  Making this can longest single canal in Britain .
Tomorrow we go on to the Aire & Calder Navigation

Time Travelled Saturday 4 Hrs  Distance Travelled 5 Miles 5  Locks in 2 Staircases.
Time Travelled Sunday    4 1/2 Hrs Distance Travelled 5.5 Miles 8 Locks in 3 Staircases 4 Single Locks.

Total Distance Travelled 597. Miles 
186 Locks (Broad )238 single locks and 18 tunnel's, 1 Massive Lock
Total Tunnel length 10707 yards   
Total Time 319 1/2 hours  

We Are Loving It so Much