We had a very good drive to the boat, the only slow bit being the A14 with 3 miles of 40 MPH speed limit for barrier repair, I have yet to see anyone working there.
It was just before 12 when we arrived at the boat and set to unloading the car and loading the boat, a bite of diner followed by a trip to the marina library where we left some books and took some books before being ready for the off at 1 pm. Our departure was a bit slow as just as I was dropping the ropes another boat in our bay reversed out and he was a bit slower than us negotiating the bridge and island, thank goodness there was no wind to make things worse.
Out on the cut we turned left, north and immediately passed another Cutweb member so a short chat was in order. We were to meet quite a few boats as the afternoon went on, By now the weather was a bit overcast and I could see rain landing in the cut but didn’t actually feel any it was that light. A clean run through Armitage Tunnel only to catch up wit a boat the other side, this was the first we had seen of him so he must be quite a bit slower than us so I stopped for water and let him get away.
Just passed the Ash Tree pub is the Ash Tree Boat club and last time we came by the land had been cleared behind the club moorings and also on the other side of the canal, now they have the foundations for several building in.
The sunken boat is still in Rugeley but now it has a CRT Notice on it so it must have arrived more than 14 days ago. Just past bridge 68 we caught up with the slow boat from Armatage again. I didn’t see him look back so I don’t know if he knew I was there or not but when he pulled close to the bank I slid by, he said hello and didn’t seem surprised to see me so I guess he knew we were catching him, well his Collie had been keeping an eye on us.
The swan is still sitting at Wharf cottage front lawn with the Cobb floating around keeping an eye on things. Last time we came through a couple of things happened, one a lamb was sitting on its mothers back, well today one was having a lie down on mums back. The other was that Diana bought some eggs from Taft Bridge, today she dropped off the empty egg case and bought another half dozen box of good free range eggs.
A steady run to Colwich lock and no queues, The cow muck at the bridge is not too bad yet but just down from the bridge looks bad, a view of what’s to come. As we left the lock another boat arrived below, as we pulled away the sun was lighting the lock and cottage nicely. There are a lot moor boats moored in the stretch by Shugborough Hall now so we decided that we may as well do Gt Haywood lock as well beings there was no one waiting. Above the lock their were a couple of mooring spaces to chose from and we are just one boat away from the junction on a nice straight piled section.