We knew we had a lot of work to do on Tuesday so we set off early. It was misty and felt like it does at about five on a summer morning.
Karen spotted this CRT man with drag rake on his bike – having a bike was a good idea with 30 locks to look after in the flight and very few roads crossing the canal.
There are often discussions on forums etc. about whether to step between the bottom gates on double gated narrow locks or walk round the long way. I tend to step over and Karen walks round. Please don’t try and do this at home.
I use an old bungee to keep the tiller hard over in locks so that it doesn’t get accidentally damaged against the gates or the cill at the bottom where the gates rest. This is especially important as both of us are off the boat in the locks where locks are close together. This is because one of us can be setting the next lock whilst the other is working the lock with the boat in. Anyway, I dropped my bungee at one lock but fortunately it had rested on the cill by the time the lock was drained so I was able to retrieve it.
We moored up for a rest after the Tardebigge flight – 28 locks done before lunch. We moored just before this pub and it really felt like summer. Over lunch we discussed what to do afterwards and I suggested that we could stay where we are for the rest of the day. But Karen thought it was a shame we were two locks short of our record for a day so we set off to do the Stoke Prior flight of six locks. Here we are setting off after lunch.
At Stoke top lock Karen managed to get a picture of a Small Tortoiseshell at rest on a winter pansy in one of our plants.
Buddy took to sitting at every lock – so lazy!
At Stoke Prior we saw this boat – the only other ‘blue butterfly’ boat we have seen on our journeys.
We moored south of Stoke Prior having achieved a new personal best – 34 locks in one day - we felt really happy but exhausted. Here are the 28 in the Tardebigge flight: