We woke to a clear sky with bright sunshine, Tee shirt weather again. Between 9 and 10 am there was a constant stream of boats passing, we set off at our normal 10 am and were third in the queue at Alrewas Lock. Before we could reach the lock we had to negotiate this willow tree, I once ended up with a red eye for a week after having one flick my eye on the Oxford canal, that’s on top of the fact you cant see ahead.
The river was really low, unlike I understand the Yorkshire Ouse. The level was at the bottom of the level gauge, not a very good photograph into the sun. Not only was it low but the surface was like a mill pond. As we passed the weir the sun was sparkling in the smooth flow of the Trent. Even through we went down the river at little more than tick-over the boat ahead was still in Wychnor lock dropping down from the river to the canal.
I rather liked the look of the Wendy House, or maybe its a Lad’s house in a garden by Barton Turn Lock. It looks as if it has central heating from that chimney popping up through the roof.
At Shobnall there is the start of The Kingfisher Trail this is marked by to large wooden posts with carved Kingfishers on the top of them.
There are numerous aqueducts on this section of the Trent and Mersey canal and CRT have numbered them, I highest number I spotted was 26 but there may be more. This was taken as we crossed one of the larger ones crossing the River Dove.
As we arrived at Stenson Lock a wide beam boat was just leaving and two chaps had just closed the top gates, but on seeing our approach they opened up again for us to enter, they were on two Narrowboats below waiting to come up. Stenson Lock is quite large and it took several minutes for it to empty with us in it before they could come up. You really don’t want to get your bow fender in there when you are coming up, I will definitely hold back a bit on our return journey. We decided to moor for the night at the 48hr moorings at Swarkestone Junction, needless to say a fisherman was right in the middle on the straightest bit. When I took this photograph we were just about at the spot where the Darby Canal use to lock down to the River Trent via 4 locks to the right. You can just see the fisherman sitting in the distance before the bend. Just beyond our mooring and just before Swarkestone Lock the Darby canal went off again, this time to the left all the way to the Erewash Canal at Sandiacre, on the way it also connected to the River Derwent and a branch went up to Little Eaton. You will see from this photograph we now have a lot more cloud in the sky. Today’s Journey 17 Miles and 7 Locks in 6¾ hours