Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Early birds but not quite to Birmingham

I dutifully arose early as requested as we had ambition....or maybe it was just a vague thought.....of reaching Birmingham.........

Off the chocks by 7.30......

We met one boat coming the other way about 8 who said he was surprised to see us as he normally didn't meet boats so early.   Geoff told him we had been on the go since 5am!!

Costa del Sol on a cloudy day........or just Dickens Heath ???
and a stones throw round the corner we were back to this.
Admittedly when you look closer behind the trees there is a huge housing development of quite large and up market looking houses...... I often wonder if any of the inhabitants know of the existence of the canal so close by.  

Only one lifting bridge on this section but on quite a busy road...and we hit it at 0845am.....Geoff had to wait quite a while for a gap in the we were popular
We stopped by bridge 5 where it is a short walk to civilisation and a convenient Co-op store.   Once again as I came up to the main road it was like entering another world, lots of traffic, buses etc.  I suspect few of the people have any idea of the canal life just a short distance away.   However they are not that civilised as it is not Daily Telegraph land!!   The lady in the Co-op said she was surprised they had run out as they had 1 Telegraph and 1 Times and 1 Guardian delivered every day.......
I was luckier in the little convenience store where I managed to get their one and only copy.

Our next stop was Lyons Boat yard which we can thoroughly recommend.   Our intention was to get fuel.  It is only a small boat yard but very well stocked and extremely helpful.  Geoff thought we needed a new headlight as ours was no longer functioning.  However they suggested that their engineer could have a look at ours first to see what the problem was.   It turned out to be loose connections behind the switch on the no replacement needed.  They also had the refills we needed for our log book.  There was no problem with declaring our own split which I did at my normal 80/20...guess which is which!!!!! 

and so to the remains of the guillotine lock at Kings Norton
By now we had decided to call it a day, the stop at the boat yard was extremely useful but more time consuming than anticipated.   We had seen very few boats en route but guess what......

Luckily we beat him to the entrance by a narrow margin.
The junction is up ahead and some reasonable moorings just before so it was settle down for Wimbledon time again......Very good TV signals around this area, we have no problem with our Freeview so very rarely have to use the satellite dish.

Total distance:7.07 miles 
Elapsed time:4h36m10s (this included a long stop at the boatyard....)
Average speed:1.54 mph 
(1.54 lock/mph) 

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