Tuesday, October 25, 2011

All full up.

We had just a short one today. After rain overnight it wasn’t such a bad day, the wind is quieter and we had a odd glimpse of the sun.
We rejoined the river just after Pillings Flood Lock. The contrast between the artificial and natural channels is marked…..

 From the cut south of Loughborough…..

Back onto the river heading for Barrow upon Soar.

Just below the Flood Lock the river heads off on it’s long loop around the town, reconnecting with the navigation below Bishops Meadow Lock. The Loughborough and Leicester Navigations were built to service the town, so they were cut on a more direct route.

Pillings Flood Lock

There’s a rotating flood control weir here, as well as the flood lock. Automatically opening as required, it allows water that can’t get over the conventional weir to be dropped into the river course quickly, preventing flooding of the canal through Loughborough.

Pillings Flood Weir.

There’s another similar structure downstream at Normanton. The Soar is notorious for rapid rise during heavy rain.

The turn into Barrow lock cut is a left turn just under the arched Barrow Bridge. Awkward when the river is running fast, it was a doddle today.

Barrow Bridge. The navigable arch is the middle one.

Barrow Deep Lock is aptly named!

Just above the lock is a length of visitor moorings, with this chap on the end. I’m not sure that Mr. Brindley had these types of boats in mind when he first wielded a shovel…

MV Brindley.

She’s a fine looking vessel, nevertheless. I’d like one of these to moor outside of one of those houses at Redhill, please.

We filled and emptied the respective tanks at Barrow Boating, meeting Maggie on NB Forevermore  Forever Young while the hose was on. She introduced us to Alex, another boater moored in the basin here. We just pulled away when I spotted NB Trundle nestling against the wharf. This is Dave and Dilys’ boat, who used to manage Raynsway Marina at Thurmaston. We pulled over so I could pop back, but there was no-one home when  I knocked.

Cruising through Barrow in the sun

We pressed on up to Mountsorrel, passing the Peter Le Marchant cruise boat Symphony on the way. The lock was empty for us on arrival, so we were through quite quickly.

Mountsorrel Lock, with the Waterside Inn alongside.

A good spot for gongoozling, but no-one was outside today.

Another 15 minutes saw us tying up to the fuel barge at Sileby Mill. 137 litres of the red stuff and 2 bags of solid fuel made a dent in the monthly budget. Still, the fuel consumption of the central heating (for just an hour a day) and the engine is still less than a litre an hour.
We were going to stop here below the lock for the night, but local anglers had taken up residence so we turned around and moored above Mountsorrel Lock instead.

Near Mountsorrel we spotted this horse snacking on duckweed.


If they could be trained to enjoy Floating Pennywort instead, they might make more of an impact than the contractors spraying the stuff!

Locks 2, miles 5¾

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