Black Country Ring (plus a bit):
Stafford to Autherley Junction
12 & 13 June 2009
Mary at the tiller as we continue to ascend the Staffs & Worcs Canal
Lucy waits for the lock to fill
Crossing underneath the M6 motorway
Twin bridges at Penkridge allow the boat and pedestrian/horse to
continue. This must have been very inconvenient for horse-drawn boats.
Above the lock, Lucy keeps an eye on things as we fill up with water
Lucy looks down into the lock, with Cannock Chase behind her
Alan at Gailey Lock, which raises us to the summit level.
The roundhouse has a good shop and an excellent bookshop.
Merry prepares to take us out of Gailey Lock
Mary at the tiller as we approach Hatherton Marina
Looking up the Hatherton Branch of the Staffs & Worcester, largely
derelict but with the first section in water for boat moorings
The Fox & Anchor is our destination tonight - good enough that we went
there twice, meeting up here beforehand on Saturday
Saturday morning sees Lucy at the tiller taking Victoria through
the rocky narrows
The canal was built narrow here because of the difficult band of rock
that had to be blasted to create a channel.
Alan, Stephen and Sheila as we approach journey's end
Autherley Junction where we must turn right. Another boat from our
boatyard is already waiting to use the lock that is immediately through
the bridge, so we have a little wait.
The last heron of the holiday sits on the junction signpost.
Stephen steers Victoria around the junction into the stop-lock.
Total for a day and a short morning: 15 miles 6½ furlongs including 12
And so it was over. The weather was definitely not up to the standard of
previous years, with only Friday being a t-shirt day and a lot of use
being made of waterproofs. Nevertheless, it was once again a very
enjoyable week. Where next?