A short hop – quiet rural spot


We admired the visitor moorings just before Stoke Bardolph lock on the way down and said “hmm, be nice to stop there, looks so quiet” and so we did. Only an hour or so from Gunthorpe and Mrs. Skipper drove all the way, yes, indeedy. Allowing me to film all the Canada/Greylag geese scooting out of Viv’s way. At times I thought she was actually aiming for them. Wildlife? What did we see today . .  loadsa geese, swans a plenty, oyster catchers, egret (on the way down we had No Egrets!), arctic tern, heron, little grebes, swallows . . . .

Does she look happy?  Helming through gritted teeth? No, she’s a pro at this now and look, no lifejacket! The boat behind is Border Reiver (Raider), in convoy. Teddy looks good as does Steve’s dangle (?).

Catching oysters??

Just to show that  a 20 metre (65 foot ) boat is quite a long beastie, keep going Viv!

Short video of all those geese convoys. So many geese and yes, apparently, you can catch and eat them but our neighbour said, if you put them and a brick in the oven, the brick would be done first!!

Ah, we saw two egrets. Normally we have No Egrets (cue song)

Hmm, hardly a day’s cruise but then you’ll see why we stopped here later. Big sign saying “this way”. Stoke lock. I think someone’s glad to see land again.

It’s a HUGE lock but the (volunteer) lock keeper checks us all in and presses all the button to close the gates (12 tons each) and open the paddles . .  yes, we are now are going uphill and the water comes in to lift us up. Gunthorpe was the lowest level reached. All the locks from now on will be uphill ones. Choosing to go anticlockwise around this ring means the majority of “up” locks will be narrow ones – a tad easier than the large locks, especially if you are on your own where the boat can swing around a bit, a lot . . .! In these huge locks there are plastic runners up the sides, so you can slip a rope around the to steady the boat. The paddles are also programmed – once the button is pressed, a program causes the paddle to rise slowly and only part way, until the lock is half full. Neat and quite gentle.

Final stop – around the corner to the floating pontoons – the Trent can rise another 10 feet or so! Toby seems happy.

It really is a quiet spot – no roads, trains or planes  . . .

Even CRT appreciate this stop

Here’s a photo lining up for photo-of-the-trip – a quiet spot.

Wood cutting in the woods

And yes, we do get bigger vessels coming down the Trent. Luckily, this was as far as he came. If you don’t turn into the lock – this is what you can face

A weir

Chance to give Toby the swim. Photographically,  what’s the subject here? Steve, Toby or that Swan??

The lock setting is quite sublime

Oddly that wasn’t the end of the day. Our wonderful chums on Raven suddenly turned up . . . . but I thought they were long gone, heading down the Trent and on to Goole?  Seems a problem with oil pressure so they’re retracing their steps to Foxton. Got to get that fixed – can’t head down the tidal Trent with a niggling engine . Shame but nice to see them again and maybe share a pint or six in the Lock Keepers Rest at Sawley. They took the time to stop and chat – thanks! And then on to Nottingham. Catch you guys tomorrow.