Metal Cotton Reels

August 31, 2009

The day started as usual, rain and not very pleasant, but hey we had plenty to do. Frances says ‘I think that the water pump is leaking again’, so I removed the box surrounding the pump, bone dry and everything was fine. Oh dear on refitting the box I caught the pressure sensor and pulled it away from the water pipe. Of course we did not notice this but fortunately we were just about to fill the water tank, the meter was reading below zero. I quickly removed the box and sure enough water was spurting all over from the exposed outlet. I cannot believe it! (Victor Meldrew again) the pressure sensor was pushed on to a very small brass pipe. It took me ages to get the thing back on and working.

By the time I was finished it was lunchtime and the weather was clearing up. We decided to go for a walk up the Stratford flight, we came across this lock which had a metal like cotton reel bobbin.

Reel for use with towing rope

Reel for use with towing rope

The bobbin was used to help the rope through the lock and bridge and enabled the horse to cross over the canal without un hitching. Don’t ask me how it worked because I have no idea.

I still do not understand why the water pump is designed such that the case joint leaks when the screws are worked loose by continuous operation.

Statistics so far:-

796.66 Miles, 602 Locks, 47 Swing Bridges, 46 Lift Bridges, 7 Tunnels.


Bank Holiday Weather

August 30, 2009

We set off today to do a long walk, but by the time we got to the junction the light rain had turned into a fairly heavy fall.

I managed a couple of pictures of the Stratford canal junction before we decided to abort the walk.

Stratford Canal Junction

Stratford Canal Junction

Junction with Lock Cottage

Junction with Lock Cottage

Oh well another day spent indoors reading, it’s a hard life.

Statistics so far:-

796.66 Miles, 602 Locks, 47 Swing Bridges, 46 Lift Bridges, 7 Tunnels.


Turner’s Green

August 29, 2009

Another short journey today, we must be one of the slowest movers on the canal, continuous moorers excepted. We did a quick cache before we left and then headed to Shrewley to have a look at the Tunnels.

Cut at Shrewley

Cut at Shrewley

Shrewley Tunnels

Shrewley Tunnels

The Main tunnel was for the narrowboats but because they were horse drawn another was required for the horses.

We have now moored up at Turner’s Green, we walked over to the Stratford canal for a quick Cache and a look at our first new canal for years. There was an unusual Lock cottage and bridge on the Stratford, we are looking forward to coming down here.

Lock Cottage

Lock Cottage

Lock Bridge on Stratford Canal

Lock Bridge on Stratford Canal

The cottage is up for sale, this is not surprising as it is only about 100 metres from the M40, what a noise. The bridge was interesting in that it is two cantilevered sections and can carry up to two tons.

We then walked back and had a couple of pints at the nearby pub.

Our Local

Our Local

Today we did 4.02 Miles and 1 Tunnel

Statistics so far:-

796.66 Miles, 602 Locks, 47 Swing Bridges, 46 Lift Bridges, 7 Tunnels.


What to do on a rainy day

August 28, 2009

Okay the day goes like this, rain, no rain, rain, no rain and yet more rain only heavier. So while we had one of the no rain periods we headed off for a walk and some caching (of course). Half way around it absolutely pours down with additional sound effects of thunder claps and some striking visuals although not necessarily in that order. So yet again we ended up completely drenched from head to toe, now how many times have I said that this year?

We went to the quiz last night, unfortunately it was music night and what I/we knew about 80’s pop you can find on this blog. Some would say what I know about anything could also be found here, anyway you wont find anything here ‘cos there aint anything here.

Tonight I made asparagus risotto, now I am far from mean, and given the choice of free nettles or costly (relative) asparagus, well no contest. It was delicious and no harm came to non hallucinating spouses.

Statistics so far:-

792.64 Miles, 602 Locks, 47 Swing Bridges, 46 Lift Bridges, 6 Tunnels.


Top of Hatton Flight

August 27, 2009

No early start for us today as we had to wait for the day boat going out for Mick to return so that we could get a much needed pumpout.

As we were leaving I suddenly thought I should take a photograph, so typically we have the welcome sign as we leave, a very friendly place and handy for town. We made two trips to the super market so that we could top up on supplies.

Saltisford Arm

Saltisford Arm

We moved down to the bottom of the flight brewed up some tea and hoped that someone would come along; the others from the arm had left much earlier. After about quarter of an hour along came Viscount, so we had someone to share the locks with. We stopped for Lunch about a third of the way up, very civilised as we usually forget about lunch and end up having a late afternoon bite.

Hatton Locks

Hatton Locks

We are now moored up at the top of the locks and will be off for a pint and quiz at the Waterman with Geoff and Kerstin.

Today we did 2.56 Miles and 21 Locks

Statistics so far:-

792.64 Miles, 602 Locks, 47 Swing Bridges, 46 Lift Bridges, 6 Tunnels.


Saltisford Arm

August 25, 2009

We came down into the Arm this morning and were met by friendly greetings from all present. The sign over the bridge says welcome and that is certainly what you get.

We went into town for lunch and a look around. We decided to have lunch first and Frances ordered a fluffy omelette with bacon, sausage and mushrooms and yes you have guessed correctly the omelette came with imbedded whole sausage and bacon rashers and mushroom, very surreal. Very flat, greasy and un-fluffy.

We did not go into the castle as it was very crowded, so we walked around and down mill lane. We discovered a very peaceful garden that was overlooked by the castle. The castle was built in the 14th Century.

Warwick Castle

Warwich Castle

Warwick Castle

Warwick Castle

Warwick Castle and River Avon

Warwick Castle and River Avon

Mill Garden

Mill Garden

Mill street viewed from Garden

Mill street viewed from Garden

There was an old disused bridge from the same period, it was superseded in the 18th Century due to traffic congestion. The work was instigated by Earl George Greville, known as ‘George the Improver’

Old Bridge

Old Bridge

Today we did 0.31 Miles

Statistics so far:-

790.08 Miles, 581 Locks, 47 Swing Bridges, 46 Lift Bridges, 6 Tunnels.


Warwick

August 24, 2009

Yes we have done 22 Lock miles today. We started off down to Bascot wharf to top up with water and just as we were finishing NB Oscar went by and I called out to them that we were going down the locks and so we went with them as far as Leamington Spa.

Coincidently and by no means a theme, I came across while walking between locks a geocache that we had found earlier but which was way off position. Fortunately it had a phone number and I rang the owner, Thornproof to report the find. After a very enjoyable conversation I agreed to leave the misplaced cache at an agreed location for him to pick up later. By the way he is working on a series for the Napton Flight which must be worth a visit, when he realises it.

We stopped off at Tescos in Leamington Spa and by the time we came out it was after four, where does the time go to? We hadn’t had lunch.

We came on through Warwick with the intention of going down into the Saltisford Arm which had been recommended by Paul from Piston Broke and by a very enthusiastic Richard and Hilary whom we had met a few days ago.

As we came to the junction going down the arm we met a boat coming out saying that there was no room at the inn so we reversed up towards the Hatton Flight and will wait for a boat to leave in the morning so that we can get down the arm.

After mooring up we walked back to the Cape of Good Hope and had a beer or two. On the way back we passed the water point. There was a key and cork float left in the water point, we stopped and examined it, it had the name of a boat written upon it. Frances called out to a chap on the boat moored nearby saying that someone had left a key and he said yes I know we have left it there as they may come back. We then noticed that it had the same name as his boat and told him so and he said no it belonged to a previous boat. But no it has your name on it and then he said oh yes we were just there, don’t tell my wife. There was another key, which had indeed been left by a previous boat. Anyway we ended up having a great long conversation with him, which did not include any mention of the ashes, he was an Australian.

Today we did 9.9 Miles and 12 Locks

Statistics so far:-

789.77 Miles, 581 Locks, 47 Swing Bridges, 46 Lift Bridges, 6 Tunnels.