Tuesday, 1 October 2013

The Shallow Ashby.

Tuesday 1st October, 2013 south of Stoke Golding
October already!  We awoke to a lovely sunrise over the ever-present fields of maize. The weather is definitely autumnal and there was a strong and chilly wind blowing all day, but at least we have had very little rain (famous last words!).
The Ashby Canal is very shallow and almost every time that we have passed another boat going in the opposite direction, we have rubbed against the bottom, tipping MM slightly to one side. This time, however, we ran firmly aground and trying to back off with the engine wouldn't free us. So R had to grab the pole, walk along the roof and pole us off the side into the middle of the canal. Interestingly, in the background, the view is towards the recently discovered true site of the Battle of Bosworth Field (although R had his mind on other things at the time!).
The Ashby does have the reputation of being shallow - but it is also supposed to have clear water. We can confirm the former, but have seen no sign of the latter.
On the way down, we saw an unusual duck who we had also seen on the way up. She had some feathers sticking out of the top of her head - so she looked like she was wearing a very fashionable "fascinator". She would have not looked out of place at a posh wedding! Unfortunately, she was a
bit camera shy, so this is the best we could do.
We called in to the Spinneybank Farm Shop next to bridge 23 but only bought a little, as we shall be going home this weekend for M's "Come and Sing" day with her choir. We did buy their home cured bacon and home-grown runner beans. We had the beans for supper and they were excellent.
In the evening we were visited by a family of swans, Mum, Dad and five cygnets, who felt that we should be feeding them more bread! "Oi!  Where's my supper?"
We suddenly realised that it is a whole week of cruising since we did a lock! "Hooray!" says M!
Today: 9 miles, 0 locks and 5.0 hours.
Trip: 469 miles, 327 locks and 391.4 hours.

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