I am Linda and along with my husband Richard and our dog Muffin we enjoy our summers on the UK's canal system

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Saturday 21st April

A nice sunny morning and hardly any rain for 24 hours now. Richard checked the river level and saw that the flood lock was open so we set off through Trent Lock. The river was still running fast but we turned off almost immediately into the Cranfleet Cut. At the end is a lock which was set in our favour. There were four boats coming up the river who had apparently been stuck at Beeston Lock since Thursday – so we were lucky only stuck for less than 24 hours. The river was running fast and at one stage we were doing nearly 8 mph! Richard stopped the boat and we drifted at about 3mph – almost the speed we would normally go on the canal! The entry to Beeston Lock was interesting! Coming down the river the lock is at an angle on the left and the weir is straight ahead with, what reminds me of, a harbour wall running to the lock from the weir. With the river running so fast Richard had to try and slow down and come into the lock waiting pontoon at an angle – as usual he did it perfectly! However as we got into the lock another boat came down the river much too fast! I just stood and watched in horror as he came in sideways heading for the “harbour” wall – somehow he managed to miss the wall and banged his nose into the pontoon. He had a dog wandering around on the roof of the boat – if he had hit the wall at the speed he was going the dog would have been knocked into the water. Once safely in the lock he admitted that it had rather “interesting”! The lock is strange as when you leave it you leave a paddle up at each end causing a flow of water through it. We went up the Nottingham into the city where we moored up outside Castle Marina. Richard wanted some bits from Maplins so we went off in search of it – it wasn’t where we thought it was – Castle Marina Retail Park – so I rang Maplins and the lady said “oh you aren’t far away” and gave me vague directions. 1.5 miles later we arrived at Castle Retail Park where we found Maplins!! How crazy to have two retails parks with such similar names. Today is the 3rd anniversary of Richard’s and my meeting – so we celebrated by going to Pizza Hit which we can see from the boat :-)

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