Sunday, 22 September 2013

The Big Reverse - Sunday 22nd September 2013

A lovely warm morning so we moved forward to the water point and filled up and then decided to reverse the 3/4 of a mile back to the junction to avoid travelling a return journey of 8 miles to the winding hole. It took about 30 minutes negotiating a couple of tight bends and with two boats passing us in either direction.
AY reverses
Autumn Years Reversing back to the Junction
We turned down the arm and up the first of 19 locks onto the North Stratford following another boat, so once again the locks were all against us until lock 8 when as we went up a boat came down lock 7. These two locks are separated by a very small pound on a sharp corner with a strong side weir and it required a bit of deft navigating to get the two boats safely passed one another and into the next locks. The last 4 locks are separate from the main flight so there is a little respite in the climb.
Here the canal follows closely alongside the Old Warwick Road with a few cottages sandwiched between the two.
There is even a Timber Merchant, Curtiss and Sons, which fronts directly on to the roadway and backs onto the towpath. It is a wonder that most of the wood has not been stolen but it has been in business since 1906.
Just before Swallow Cruisers the first Drawbridge is encountered which has to be wound up hydraulically  by hand.
Draw bridge
Beyond the drawbridge are the moored boats of Swallow Cruisers and just through the next steeply humpbacked bridge is the boatyard with their new shed and poly tunnels. They are closed on Sundays.
Swallow Cruisers
We moored up for the day just before the next drawbridge so that we could watch the Grand Prix and get a few jobs done before hand. Later a Kate hire boat joined us for the night.

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