Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Early start, later lurk

We had another short cruise planned for today, from Penkridge to our favourite mooring above Deepmore/Deptmore Lock (the name seems to vary). It involved just three locks, Longford, Parkgate and Shutt Hill, and the run through Acton Trussell. The night before, we'd decided on a start between half seven and eight, but it was another day of uncertain weather so we set off just on the half hour.

Sheila was steering and suited up in her coverall. Since it wasn't actually raining and was quite mild, I refrained from this step. If needed, a waterproof jacket would do for a bit of lock working and I could stay inside for the rest of the time. It proved to be another quick run. Two of the three locks were with us and the weather held off until we arrived at our destination. I just had time to get the breakfast washing up done in addition to my lockworking duties.

There's a lot of Armco between Acton Trussell and Deepmore lock, but much of it is unusable. At the first place we tried, the waling rail, which had been a simple angle iron, had corroded away to nothing and the second, although adequate in terms of the condition of the piling, was too shallow for comfort. As a result, we've ended up just round the corner from the lock, a familiar spot to us. It's almost an ideal country mooring with just about adequate depth, decent piling and far enough from both the local roads and the M6 to be very quiet.

By ten we were established in the cabin with the rain starting to bluster and the temperature falling rather than rising as the day went on. It was cool enough to justify a mug of soup with lunch, though the fire has not been required.

We've not been totally idle; the finishing touches have been made to the quiz for the Owners' Weekend, the whole made up into one document and the answer sheets prepared. We've seen a couple of familiar boats, or rather one and a pair. Leatherworker Dave on Anon... has tied just in front of us and as I was writing this post, hotel boats Duke and Duchess have worked up the lock and boated off towards Acton.

A hot meal tonight, methinks, breaded chicken fillets with new potatoes and sweetcorn. Tomorrow, we'll have a longer day to get back to Tixall.

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