Travelled 16.2 miles, worked 4 locks in a time of 6 hours 45 minutes.
Another great day's cruising in weather which was a little changeable. We started off at 7.50am with a dull start and yet feeling quite warm. Seeing the Rugeley cooling towers in the distance again meant we were not far from Rugeley.
Rugeley is a place we always remember with fondness, because it is where we got Paddy from The Border Collie Trust. We had no need to stop for shopping even through there were some moorings going, so we just kept going.
I stepped off the boat at Armitage Tinnel to check there was nothing coming in the opposite direction, the tunnel was frre for us to pass through, so I jumped back on board. Whilst we carried on cruising, I got the Shiny Sinks and Brasso out and began polishing the Brass, which had not been done for a good few weeks. I do love to see shiny Brass, so was a very happy girl when the portholes and roof brass were all clean and gleaming.
Rugeley Cooling Towers in all their glory.
Through Rugeley on the posts there were signs telling of death.
It is the first time I have seen these sort of signs, maybe they need to be dished out more along the system. At Brindley Bank we met another boat coming the other way on the tight bend, but with us all knowing what we were doing, it all went smoothly.
The next boat we met was at Colwich Lock, the boat had just exited the lock and had left one of the gates open for us. On a normal cruising day, you can find yourself queuing at Colwich.
We left the lock and headed towards Great Haywood and Shugborough Hall. There are some stunning views across the valley as you approach the Hall in all its glory.
I had thought that there were no moored boats, but as we got closer to Great Haywood Lock that soon changed, there were boats there, which looked like they had been there for sometime. As we approached the lock NB Beerfur was just entering the lock, so I stepped off the boat with the centre line, wound it round a bollard and walked up to the lock to help with the gates as the gentleman was single handing. As he went on his way, I set the lock for us.
We had no plan to stop at Great Haywood and that was just as well because above the lock the moorings were pretty busy with boats which once again look like they had been there for a while. These boats tend to be a give away because they have all their worldly goods stacked up on the towpath. As we approached the junction on to the Staffs and Worcs Canal, a boat was winding in the mouth of the junction and their was a boat waiting to come out of the junction.
We held back to allow the other boats to get themselves sorted out. Oh the joy of being back of being back on the Trent and Mersey Canal.
The sanitary station moorings were heaving with boats waiting to use the facilities.
At 11.50 am we turned on to the Staffs and Worcester Canal. I always enjoy heading on to Tixel Wide.
The wide looked beautiful as always and we were pleasantly surprised to see only three boats moored up, normally it is heaving even at this time of the year. Absent from the wide were the Great Crested Grebe, which is a little worrying, because the wildfowl on the wide has been disappearing over the years. I can only hope the Grebe were hiding. The only wildfowl on the wide were Canada Geese. At Tixall lock we came across 2 small boats starting up through the lock, so I once again took the centre line off and tied it to a mooring bollard. I then walked up to the lock to help the two boats through, who doubled up in the lock. The views across the valley are lovely as is the view of the River Sow. The noise of the railway does not bother us. By the time we approached Deptmore lock, the light rain started (I polished the brass) so once up through the lock we moored just pass Roseford Bridge No.94, near Acton Trussell, we have never moored here before, it is just deep enough for us. The one thing we have noticed is this whole stretch has seen a large scale tree and bush trimming, BW have been busy and it is very much appreciated by all boaters.
It has been another great cruising day, we drank lots of coffee and I made us lunch on the run, today it was hot cross buns and chocolate cake. All moored up we are now enjoying the warmth from the fires, we also have a great TV signal, so will settle in front of the TV later, on whilst having dinner and then a hot shower, before bedtime arrives once more.