Friday, 23 August 2013

Back To Alvecote - Ready For The "Gathering"

(Boat Chalice - posted by Cath)

Only a fairly short journey today, so no great rush to get going early.

We did the final two locks of the Curdworth Flight, passing the nature reserve and bird sanctuary which seems to be undergoing major construction at the moment, with entrances blocked off and large diggers and road making equipment (what my mother used to call "yellow dragons") chugging up and down behind the hedge.
Footbridge at Drayton Manor, is it based on traditional canal art?

Another quick stop at the titchy Tesco's at Fazeley then we carried on towards Tamworth.

At the marina the first thing we saw was Sickle, which had been moved right up to the very end of the moorings.
Sickle - bow positioned well for everyone entering and leaving the marina

We didn't know where we would be able to moor Chalice, we'd heard it was pretty full already, and if you miss a mooring it's a very long way to the next winding hole. We sent David ahead, past the marina, with a radio. Luckily we got the same mooring as last year for Chalice - near enough to the marina and the Samuel Barlow, far enough to be quiet.

Looking for a mooring - not on this bend
After this a procession of boats started to arrive from the South:



Nutfield and Raymond





A bit of polishing up Sickle's tarnished brasses and a lot of chatting to friends before we managed to get a table in the Samuel Barlow for the evening, and had the excellent Mushroom Stroganoff and the Goats Cheese and Vegetable pie.

the Samuel Barlow makes a big thing about the 'cranky chef'

Bodymoor Heath, Curdworth to Alvecote Marina
Miles: 8.0 (Chalice), Locks: 4

Total Miles: 337.0, Locks: 192

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