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Friday, 24 May 2013

Blustery day.

I had to try hard to get the boat off the bank this mooring due to the wind and there were gusts that nearly knocked over when she was standing on a lock side. But she is quite small and with all her clobber on she would be like a ship with full sail. Just round the corner was a lift bridge. When I passed there were about 5 men with dogs just leaning on the fence chatting. I thought we had kept them waiting but Helen said they were just meeting up and chewing the fat.

Lift Bridge No 23.

Soon after the bridge came Stockton Brook Locks. There is a flight of 5 locks and we must have met boats coming down at three of them. They all said that it was really quiet ahead of us but we still seemed to meet what ever traffic there was at a lock, bridge or tight bend. Still it makes it interesting.

Helen has made it to the Stockton Brook top lock and now has a bit of a rest.

A little further on and you come to Eldon. There is an unusual 'roundabout' here. It is the sit of the pivot of a swing bridge that carried a light railway over the canal I'm not sure why you can only pass one side of the island but I didn't fancy testing it out. You have to pass the same side on the way down. Just through the bridge is a basin where transhipments could take with the railway. The railway in this area is the same track as we had seen overgrown yesterday. We saw people checking the line so I assume that they must be using this part for the Churnet Valley Steam Railway.

Roundabout, bridge and transhipment basin at Endon.

We stopped for water at the Park Lane Services. It was really windy here and annoyingly I found that I had left my hose attachment on the tap that we last used. Luckily I had another connection and then with cold hands and the winds I dropped the Jubilee clip in the water. I got it fixed up and then started fishing for it. I found it after a little while following lots of bolt heads etc. 

Narrow canal, tight bends and traffic keep you concentrating.

Not much further up you come to Hazlehurst Junction. This is where the Leek Arm leaves the main line. The Main line goes down a flight of three locks and that allows the Leek Canal to go over the top in an aqueduct. The junction is very pretty, even in the rain and wind. The black and white and stone bridges with a signpost along with the white painted cottage make it appealing.

The Leek Arm leaves to the right and the main line goes down the locks.

Hazelhust bridge with the Leek Arm going over the top. I'm concentrating as we are going to be mooring up just round the corner.

Helen has been baking this afternoon once we tied up and as a reward we are going to the pub just near our bow to have a swift half. I hope the weather is better for the long weekend so everybody can have a bit of a cheer up after some pretty miserable weather lately.

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