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Saturday, 8 April 2017

Out into the countryside.

I forgot to say that whilst we were up the Bradley Arm we saw a red kite and a kestrel and, a first of us, a little grebe. Our book says they are widespread but we don't remember ever seeing one before.

The day dawned as expected, bright and sunny, and having spent an undisturbed night we started sorting out the logistics of getting up with four aboard. I went off to buy some milk ans stuff whilst the others sorted the logistics!

When I got back the others were cooing over our first mallard ducklings, or any duckling come to that. There were ten of them but wouldn't stay bunched to make a good photo.

After breakfast we pulled the boat up to the water point and started filling with the hose through the door into the yard. I love this triangular Chubb building and it is a little sad that they still haven't found anything to do with it.

I'm glad the advert on the old warehouse has been restored as I love wall paintings, especially with so much information too.

The water was soon completed and we moved off to the top lock to start our descent. The lock cottages here are very atmospheric and I imagine they have been used in many a period piece.

We were soon into a rhythm with me going ahead and opening the paddle locks on the bottom gates and preparing the lock ahead and open the top gate. Amy and Joe then closed up and then lowered the boat down and closing up. Luckily most of the locks were our way, or nearly so, so I could flit backwards and forwards, and pick up litter too.

We were down at the bottom lock in a little more than 2 hours. We met a boat coming up at No.9 and at No. 19 otherwise it was nice and quiet. A feller helped us by shutting the gate on odd locks but it seems he was missing his boat as his second wife didn't like it so it had to go. a very close 50/50 call for him I expect.

Out on the Staffs and Worcester the run to Autherley Junction goes under plenty of bridge before passing Oxley Marine. As we turned into the bottom of the 'Shroppie' there was a hire boat about ready to come through so we swung and waited for them to clear. 

As we passed through the lock I had time to dumb all the rubbish we had collected at the bins just by bridge No.1 and then we were off up the canal. Four years since we had passed this way last was our best guess.

 Amy and Joe acted like we were a hire boat and sat at the front as we headed north. We didn't go too far, just to the moorings after bridge 7. 

After mooring up we had a bit to eat and then people scattered into the sun. Here we see two birds soaking up the sun. Skye and Helen that is.

When I looked out I thought we had a couple of 'jumpers' at the last bridge, but no it turns out to be Amy and Joe on the roof.

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