A short and sweet trip today as I took the boat off the end of the Trent & Mersey canal and moored at Sawley. During the trip, I played chicken with a swan, and tried to hold the boat still in a sideways wind.
I continue east along the Trent & Mersey canal from Willington, re-discovering that from that point it’s a wide canal and that means sharing (wide) locks with other narrowboaters. Video also features two dogs, a horse, some strange noises and a little bit of calm.
In another tense, nail-biting episode, I cruise further east along the Trent & Mersey canal on my narrowboat, through Burton-on-Trent and up to Willington. This involves the lockside purchase of some carrots.
It’s not really a vlog because in this episode I’m just re-tracing my steps from the prior five cruising videos and didn’t really film as usual but I compiled this selection of clips to illustrate Stuff Of Interest – mostly to do with how amazingly busy the canals got after July 4th when lockdown restrictions were eased and people could use their boats again.
At the end of a very warm day in June, I set off from Shugborough to Great Haywood, turning there onto the Staffs & Worcester canal because from there down to Autherley is a section of canal I’ve never done before. I moored at Tixall Wide – beautiful – and then headed on around Stafford before being perplexed at what people have at the end of their gardens in Acton Trussell.
After almost drowning in the sea of rain falling onto Fradley, a new menace threatened my journey as the furious weather switched tack, turning instead to attack me with blazing rays of sun at a million degrees. Parched, weak and craving to escape the furnace I hauled myself to the back of the boat and just about had enough energy to propel the boat in search of shade, even as my last drops of water were exhausted. This is that traumatic tale.
After I had the narrowboat blacked at Stone I set off along the Trent and Mersey canal to head to my winter mooring. Unfortunately, disaster struck on the outskirts of the town when one lovely sunny Sunday morning, the engine made a peculiar noise which resulted in a horrible discovery…
Having explored the furthest, murkiest depths of the Caldon canal, I turned around, came back the way I’d come and continued up the Trent & Mersey canal, through Harecastle tunnel and then took a sharp left onto the Macclesfield canal. Spoiler alert: it’s utterly lovely.
When I reached the town of Stone in Staffordshire, I paused to pick up a special guest – Jasmin from YouTube channel “This Narrowboat Adventure” (link below). Battling the mighty forces of wind, rain and vicious swans, we made it through the town until calling it quits for the day.
In this episode, I set off from Handsacre and squeeze through the tiny narrow section just after the town where it’s only just wide enough for one boat and you can’t see if anyone’s coming the other way. Then I went through Rugeley, which was very busy and moored near Weston, waking up to an emergency involving a sheep. Yes, really.