Saturday, 20 August 2016

What the motorbikes on the towpath did next

Last time I steered along the Tame Valley Canal we encountered motorbikes on the towpath, so I wasn't entirely surprised when a loud noise nearby got even louder and gained the form of two motorbikes joining the towpath in front of us.

This illustrates the antisocial side of what the riders presumably think of as jolly japes. As they approach a pedestrian at speed ...

... she has to get out of the way as the bikes roar through a deep puddle.

At Rushall Junction we turned left onto the Rushall Canal and immediately found ourselves in a much weedier environment. Today I must have been down the weed hatch half a dozen times. I suppose blanket weed makes a change from plastic bags.

The first seven of the nine locks are close together; one pound was very low. I had to steal water from the pound above, and then top up that pound from the next one.

Despite the obvious lack of traffic on this canal the locks were mostly in good condition. One paddle rack has slipped out of position ...

... and this anti-vandal device was inoperable owing to the presence of what looks like a socket someone has lost trying to work it.

The long pound leading to the top two locks shows how little used it is.

We tied up on the 48 hour mooring by the facilities block at Longwood Boat Club, which has the best, cleanest Elsan disposal point I have had the pleasure to use.

After tea we walked to the Manor Arms pub where I had an excellent ale in the unusual bar.

There is no bar as such: drinks are dispensed from one wall of the room where customers are sitting.

David and Penny left us before we set off this morning, David having cycled back to Park Head to get their car yesterday.

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