Travelled 9.1 miles, worked 8 locks in a time of 4 hours 20 minutes.
Keith and I slept really well last night, neither of us heard the rain, I think after all the effort I put into the locks yesterday, I was destined to have a good nights sleep. We woke up to a bright morning, no wind and the sun doing its best to poke its head out. After walking Paddy and eating breakfast, we got the anchor out of the gas locker.
With us heading on to the river, we made sure the anchor was ready should I need to throw it over board on our journey. One can never be to careful.
We set off at 9.05 am and headed for Blue Bank Lock my first lock of the day.
After that it was Kings Lock with the tea rooms.
King’s lock, and the section of canalised river Sence starts below this lock. The gauge was inn the green and so no panic over a fast flow. The tea rooms were closed today, so no chance of a quick cuppa.
The Fountain guys were out mowing the grass, one of the guys very kindly closed bottom gates for me on a couple of locks, it looked as thought someone was ahead of us leaving lock gates open and paddles up.
Onward to Aylestone Mill Lock with a plaque in the ground by the lock.
St Marys Mill Lock, with its Graffiti.
The River Soar enters here for the first time, just below St. Mary’s Mill lock.
Freemans Lock and Weir.
Leicester City Football Club alongside Freeman’s lock.
In to Leicester.
Castle Gardens Moorings.
National Space Centre at Belgrave Lock.
Moored above Birstall Lock.
Having moored up above Birstall lock we took a walk around the southern part of Watermead Park. There were plenty of Geese, Swans and Ducks about. The Country Park is nearly two miles long and comprises over 12 lakes and smaller ponds, wildflower meadows, woodland, grassland and reed beds. It is an ideal spot for walking, cycling, picnics, bird watching, and fishing.
Running through the park are the River Soar and Grand Union Canal which provide an essential corridor for wildlife.
The waterfowl gather at the feeding area for a chance to snatch some bread from a walker and her family.
The lake below this Mammoth is known as Mammoth Lake. The Millennium Mammoth was built to commemorate the discovery of ice age mammoth remains found when Watermead was a quarry. It is a fabulous place and lots of wildfowl to see.
Back on the boat it was time to put my feet up before cooking dinner, feeding mog and dog.
I have not mentioned the locks so far, but that is about to change. Some of the locks were hard to work. North Lock in Leicester was dreadful. The ground paddles are missing and so you can only use the gate paddles. The bottom gates were very hard to move and I am quite sure a weaker person could end up with a hernia. Aylestone Lock filled very slowly. In all all the locks needs some work done on them.
The ground paddles have locking devises on them and some were not locked.
The gate paddles are supposed to have padlocks on them, but they were all missing, now this maybe because C&RT have stopped replacing them, or it maybe that someone has pinched them all. I know in the past this has happened a lot and at over £60 each it must cost a fortune to keep replacing them.