We left Alrewas on Saturday morning breaking a wafer thin skimming of ice and were soon on the river section to Wychnor. A breakfast break at Barton before heading through Burton on Trent where we called in at Jannel Cruisers to pick up a bag of smokeless fuel. A few changes since we last called in, including a cafe.
We moored up mid afternoon at Findern behind Nadee Indian Restaurant in lovely sunshine. We didn't eat there on this occasion, but we can certainly recommend it for a meal. One of our favourite local such establishments. Instead, we ate on board and welcomed our good friends Dave & Sally over for a few evening drinks. We were accompanied by some very loud Bhangra music from a function at the restaurant. It even had the windows vibrating !!
This morning we woke to the canal being quite solidly iced over. We took a walk down to Stenson Lock coffee shop and enjoyed a latte and by the time we got back to the boat a few had started moving and breaking the ice. We left just after midday and soon encountered some valuable Health & Safety advice from an elderly lady enjoying a walk. "Don't fall in it's icy. You'll catch hibernation" she said. I know what she meant...I think ?? We enjoyed the trip down to Shardlow. We know this section intimately. We often walk the dogs along various stretches and John grew up fishing at Stenson, Swarkestone and Shardlow. Louises uncle and aunt live in a house that backs onto the canal just above Weston Lock and she spent a lot her childhood here too.
Moorings at Shardlow were full so we carried on and moored just above Derwent Mouth Lock before taking a walk down to Sawley to check on river levels...everything just in the green and falling which is good news.
I was shocked tonight as we walked through the fishery beside the M1 (for which I have had a ticket for 35 years). Like boaters, there are varying types of anglers. Personally, I like to out think fish and be active in catching them, altering tactics according to conditions etc. Over recent years the carp angler has gained popularity, especially those who sit in a tent and wait for a bite alarm to tell them a fish has taken the bait. Not much skill in that is my humble opinion, but to see the 'bivvies' by the lake with a digital TV aerial protruding out of the top is a whole new dimension !!!
Tomorrow our peace will be shattered as our youngest son and girlfriend join us for a few days. It was nice while it lasted...