Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Best laid plans and all that!

We left Rowington this morning, after saying our goodbyes to Dave & Ang, (actually they left before us!) Our plan was to cruise to Kingswood and turn onto the South Stratford Canal.  The Grand Union was low, a boat in front of us got grounded on a bend and we did slightly whilst passing another boat.  We arrived at Kingswood Junction, there were two boats waiting for the first lock going down, by the time we had used the services, the second boat had entered the lock, unfortunately they were unable to get out of the lock.  Everything was tried, flushing more water through, people stood on the boat, rocking, using ropes and poles but it was well and truly stuck.  A BW guy appeared, he tried, but also said that this was happening on a number of locks due to low water, he disappeared and re-appeared with a pole with a steel plate on the bottom, but that wasn't working either.  We got chatting to a chap who said he had just walked up the first 10 locks and there were boats stuck all over, and lots were having problems getting out of the locks.  We had a look at the map and made a decision to change our plans.  Deep joy, ascending the Lapworth flight was hard work, 19 locks, on probably the hottest day of the year, but we moved with ease.  There was a lot of water coming down the by-washes and the level of the water seemed to be high so we do think they were feeding the flight, to improve the levels further down, by the time we reached the top lock the levels seemed to be normal.   We can now be found moored in a reasonable depth of water at Warings Green, ready for a quick, early dash through Kings Norton and onto the Worcester & Birmingham Canal in the morning now heading for Worcester.

Kingswood Junction

Lapworth Flight

7.5 miles 19 locks

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