Thursday, 30 April 2015

Change of mind

It looked like yesterday's fears were realised when we got out of bed at around 7:30.  The domestic battery voltage was rather low.  So I started the engine before breakfast and left it running up to the time we were ready to go.  By then the voltage was higher than it had been all week and by the end of the day's journey was back to normal.  What had been the problem? No idea, perhaps damp and corrosion again.
On the Staffs & Worcestershire

Last night we had changed our plans.  Previously our intention was to go to Penkridge on the Staffs and Worcs.  However we had concluded that neither of us were that interested in going there.  It's a useful place for shopping and one of the pubs has has very good food.  And that's about it.  So a mile after leaving our mooring we turned the boat around and headed back to Great Haywood. Despite occasional light showers we reached there in time for lunch.  We took the opportunity to fill up with water and buy a few groceries at the farm shop. Then north up the Trent & Mersey Canal towards Stone.  By 3pm we had reached one of our favourite moorings out in the countryside at Ingestre.  I dont know how to pronounce it!

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

South on Staffs & Worcestershire Canal

At 6am I was lying awake listening to the heavy rain drumming on the boat roof.  Soon afterwards the central heating came on and I went to look at the fire.  It was nearly out, and half an hour later it was out completely.  More practice needed!

By 10:00 the rain had stopped and so we set off in breezy weather but with blue skies and mainly white clouds.  At the junction we left the Trent & Mersey turning left onto the Staffs & Worcestershire Canal.  At Tixall Wide we were pleased to note that the bank had been much improved since we were there last year, and all along the canal the towpath had been recently mowed.  It was looking attractive and well kept.
The Stafford Link starts here

New signpost

About four miles and two locks after leaving Great Haywood we passed the point at which the Stafford Link will one day join the canal.  Here there is a new signpost hopefully pointing towards Stafford across low lying fields.  There are plans to canalise the River Sow to link Stafford into the canal network providing a new destination for boaters and adding to the tourist attractions of the city.  Two miles later we moored up for the day at around 1pm.

The environment on a narrowboat is hard on electrics.  Last night the lights in our saloon started flickering.  We had seen such problems previously due to light switches failing, perhaps because of corrosion from condensation.  We have a few spare switches so I replaced what I believed to be the faulty one and now the lights work perfectly.  Another electrical peculiarity has appeared: the charging voltage of our doemstic batteries is rather low.  But we dont yet seem to have any problems with low power, but its something we will have to watch.  

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Great Haywood

Densie at Great Haywood
The fire which we lit yesterday was still alight in the morning and the diesel central heating came on at 6:30  so when we got up an hour later the boat was fairly warm.  After breakfast we shopped at the Rugeley Tesco and then set off north towards Great Haywood. Despite the forecast the weather was good with blue skies and white clouds, although there was a cold wind.  At the edge of Rugeley the canal took us past the towpath recently resurfaced by our local IWA branch and then out into the countryside below the hills of Cannock Chase.  After ascending Colwich and Great Haywood locks we moored near the junction with the Staffs & Worcestershire canal just before 12:00.

After visiting the Farm Shop for meat for tomorrow's dinner and some local cheese we returned to the boat for lunch. We could have moved on but instead decided to have a lazy afternoon.  There is always tomorrow, provided the weather stays dry.

Monday, 27 April 2015

Out again!!!!

After over 6 months we are out on Densie again.  It will only be a short trip of a week or so but we are ready to get out of the house and onto the water.  The weather forecast isnt great but never mind. If it rains we will moor up and wait. .

After a quick pack first thing in the morning we were ready to cast off soon after lunchtime.   The weather was cool but sunny as we headed north reaching Rugeley at 15:30.   An uneventful journey and one we have made many times before. After mooring  our first job was to light the fire, and as i type the cabin is pleasantly warm.