From Town To Country

Our mooring in Leamington Spa was in the industrial area by Rangemaster and as there was an outcry yesterday about the absence of pictures here is one of the mooring.  This can be compared with the place we moved to in the evening, just before Wood Lock.

Leamington Spa
Moored Before Wood Lock

We departed at 07:30 this morning and had the locks all to ourselves, no surprise there, and nearly all were set perfectly for us.  We reached the top of Bascote in good time using one gate and one ground paddle and continued in this manner through Stockton and Calcutt.  The locks on this stretch may have some heavy gates but they are all very well behaved when treated properly.

Going Up Under Perfect Control
Another Perfect Lock Entry
Leaky Locks

We met another small boat going up at Itchington and they stayed with us for just the two locks.  Half way up Stockton Locks we met one other boat coming down.  Then at Calcutt two lots of two boats were coming down out of locks 1 and 2 making our passage very easy.

We turned left at Napton and started to pass a few more boats.  The scenery opened up to the left and right and in places we could see for several mile across the countryside.

On one of the boats the owners were jumping up and down with glee and pointing at us.  We wondered what was going on then they pointed at their dog and said he’s called “Oliver”.  Boats then started coming thick and fast, including a fuel barge, the first we have seen this trip.  As we got close to bridge 102 where we had planned to moor the banks started to become crowded and we decided to stop well short of the bridge.  This was a decidedly good move.  When we peeped around the corner there were boats lined up all the way to the bridge.  We chose this spot especially so we could walk to the “Olive Bush”, at Flecknoe, for our evening meal.  The online reports all look excellent.  We’ll add our review to the blog tomorrow as obviously we’ll be too tired tonight as it’s about a mile and a quarter walk each way and we’ve already gone up 17 locks today.

Captivating Countryside

While we sat and had lunch – smoked salmon sandwiches, glass of white wine, strawberries, meringue and cream – we saw more and more boats going past in both directions.  We reckon we have seen more boats on the move between 10am and 4pm today than we have seen in the whole of the rest of the holiday!

Our Lunchtime View