Sunday, 13 November 2016

Autumn Cruise 2016 - Week 5

 Monday 7th November - Bridge 8 to Brewood

Today we did a very short cruise - all of an hour and about 2 miles!!  Dave took the boat and I walked Toby, and we got there first!!  Dave had to go at tick over for a lot of the time as there are many moored boats along that stretch.  
We continued past the village centre and moored up opposite the permanent moorings overlooking open fields.
We walked into Brewood to stock up on supplies and then returned to the boat.  In the evening we met up with our friends Anne and Steve and went to The Crown Joules in Codsall.  We have a lovely evening and a delicious meal.  Many thanks again to Anne and Steve for collecting and returning us to our mooring!

Tuesday 8th November - Day in Brewood

We woke to an amazing frost this morning - it had been exceptionally cold overnight on board.  The canal was not frozen but Toby's water bowl certainly was!

The frost has turned our black cratch cover white!  Ella is all ready for Remembrance Day, sporting her large red poppy!

We spent the day quietly on board and walked Toby along the towpath and the lanes around Brewood.

Wednesday 9th November - Brewood to Norbury Junction

We set off from our mooring and passed a burnt out motor cruiser.  We don't remember seeing it on our way out so it must have happened whilst we were away!! Do hope no one was hurt!

The only lock of the day - Weaton Aston Lock - and then pulled over to fill up with water at the water point.

Further along there are more visitor moorings, and these are for sale- quite unusual.  This pontoon is up for sale - we might look into this concept.

Cowley tunnel is only a short tunnel, but I like this shot as it shows how roughly hewn it has been from the rocky surround.

The final stretch as we approach Norbury - it has been  fairly slow progress as the leaves in the canal are making the water a bit like mud soup!  The propeller struggles to make its way through the debris on the water.

Moored up just before the Junction and lit the fire - it has been a damp and cold journey but at least it will be nice and cosy in the boat.  

Thursday 10th November - day at Norbury Junction

Today we went for a walk north away from Norbury Junction to find the double culvert bridge.  On the way we passed the High Bridge with the disused telegraph pole.

The double culvert bridge has a footpath over it and beneath the footpath is a stream.  However there is no evidence of the stream, just where it should be.

From there we followed a footpath through a nature reserve following the canal back towards High Bridge.  We could clearly see the canal below us with a boat moored up.

Friday 11th November - Norbury Junction to Market Drayton

This morning we woke to a misty start, the canal looks quite mysterious in the early morning light with the sun just rising above the treetops.

In Grub Street Cutting there are a couple of boats moored and a workshop with ageing, vintage cars dotted about.  This time I found an old Landrover hidden among the trees.

Dave and Toby had walked through Grub Street Cutting, Toby ended up very wet and muddy, so he was zipped into his bag and sat up on the roof to dry out!

On the way towards Goldstone Wharf we passed a pig farm - I have never noticed it before!  The pigs were gathered together maybe waiting for food?  We stopped at the wharf to put on water.

Then the canal dives into Woodseaves Cutting, an amazing example of the work carried out by man power alone.

High Bridge again shows how deep the cutting is!

From there we head towards Tyrley Locks and pass the "Spirit of Phoebe", the tiniest narrowboat ever.  We first saw this boat moored up at Brewood on the permanent moorings at the beginning of our trip. 

We continued through Tyrley Locks, quite hard work as the leaf sediment has now sunk to the bottom of the canal and makes it shallow and more difficult to gain propulsion and momentum in and out of the locks.

We moored up just past Tyrley Castle Bridge and just south of Market Drayton.  We are definitely on our home stretch now!

Saturday 12th November - day at Market Drayton 

As today is going to be a damp and dismal day we are going to stay put and explore the countryside around here.   In the field on the opposite side of the canal are the most attractive sheep - for all sheep fans out there!!

Beside the locks at Tyrley, these little people have been attached to a tree trunk. I'm sure they used to be attached to the rock face.....!

Just thought this was of interest, the houses beside Tyrley Top Lock are beautiful.

 The recent rain has had a profound effect on the water in the canal, it isn't usually this colour!!!

A stunning sunset at the end of the day.

Sunday 13th November - Market Drayton to Overwater Marina

Our final day of our Autumn Cruise.  The weather today is meant to be white cloud, but dry and no wind!  A perfect day for cruising. 

Many of the trees along the canal are laden with red berries, with the weather being so mild up to now I guess the birds haven't needed to eat them.  I wonder if they will still be there around Christmas Time?  

20 locks today, 5 at Adderley and 15 at Audlem, we took it in turns and shared the work.  We had a problem leaving the first lock in Adderley, got stuck in the by waters and Dave had to use the pole to get the boat free again.  

Apart from that we had a super cruise, helped by a very kind gentleman who helped set all the locks leading down into the village, much appreciated!!  We arrived back at Overwater by 3 o'clock, sorted the boat and got ourselves home before it was dark.

We have had another exciting and amazing cruise, seen lots of different places, canals, met some lovely people.  

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