Sunday, 26 July 2015

Nantwich to Birmingham

After not having a good enough internet signal for ages I'm trying to catch up with where we are now so this is where we stopped heading for Birmingham.

Nantwich to Audlem 5.5 miles and 2 locks
We stopped for a few days at one of our favourite spots with a lovely view. While we were here James' phone decided to jump from his hand and try a swim in the canal, it wasn't successful and sunk! James then spent an hour or so and somehow successfully retrieve it. It was left to dry for a few days and then when switched back on it appeared to work, which was great news as we use that for our internet as mine is limited to 1GB. The problem is that he can't make or receive calls!! Texting and internet are ok though and we've always got mine for the calls, so all is well again on Lois Jane.

One of my favourite mooring spots

View from my kitchen window, looks much nicer in the sun

Very wet and muddy phone after an attempted swim

We went for a walk through the lovely Cheshire countryside, crossing the fields on footpaths we made sure they were cow free, cows seem very interested in Dudley. One particular field appeared cow free until we were half way across when we spotted a line of cows making their way back from milking, on sighting us the first couple made a run to see us, we managed to stop them by waving our arms and making funny noises, and made it safely to the other side. 

We came across this old mill

The old mill from the front

Dudley was very tired after his adventure

Audlem to Market Drayton 6.5 miles and 20 locks
We arrived at Market Drayton on a Monday and there had been a floating market at the weekend, most of the traders were still around and we had a lovely towpath get together Monday evening, Cosmo, Daquiri and Patch said hello to Dudley but didn't want to play and poor George wouldn't go near him after Dudley wouldn't leave him alone at the Burton market, Dudley found a new girlfriend though and spent a few hours running up and down the towpath with Doris a lovely 2 year old German Shepherd. Sadly I didn't get any photos of the get-together.

Moored up at Market Drayton

Market Drayton to High Offley 8.5 miles and 5 locks
It was a really hot day, we left Market Drayton early to get through the five locks before it got too hot, we met up again with Sandra and Ray and Lesley joined us in the afternoon. In the evening we strolled up to The Anchor pub with Sandra where Dudley had another try at playing with Cosmo and Daquiri.

Very interesting bridges on this section

The old Cadbury Wharf where goods used to be carried to and from Bournville
High Offley to Coven (bridge 8) 15 miles and 1 lock
We intended on stopping at Brewood, but the visitor moorings were full and there really isn't anywhere else to moor as it's too shallow to get to the edge, so we continued on to the moorings between bridges 8 and 7 where again we just stayed the night.

And through one of the most photographed bridges

The short Cowley Tunnel

Looking back through the cutting to the tunnel
Coven to Wolverhampton 5.5 miles and 22 locks
We had the one stop lock at Autherley Junction where we turned right for a short time on the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal before turning left onto the Birmingham Mainline and up the 'Wolverhampton 21'. A boat entered the bottom lock just before us and it turned out to be fellow traders Jenine and Bill on Witchcraft. We made good time up the flight as the boat behind us had three locking crew so one was ahead getting the lock ready meaning they were closing the gate as James left, so I was able to do the same for Jenine. We stopped at the top on the moorings opposite Broad Street facilities. There is no access to the moorings apart from by boat so Dudley was able to enjoy a bit of freedom. That night there were terrific thunderstorms it was amazing to watch the lightening,

Moored in Wolverhampton
Wolverhampton to Birmingham 13 miles and 3 locks
We continued on the Birmingham Level/New Main Line into Birmingham. There was a race along the towpath and the runners were passing us all the way into Birmingham, the finish line for them was by Brindley Place, as we have done this section of canal several times James disappeared inside after we'd got through the Tipton Factory Locks to get on with some more work.

It was quite weedy in some places, Dudley was very interested

Moored up outside the NIA - now names the Barclaycard Arena

TOTALS  321.5 miles and 302 locks

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