The journey downstream was very pleasant, although maybe not as pretty and the reach down to the aqueduct from Great Haywood, with which we are familiar from previous trips.
We finally exited at the Armitage footbridge, porting the kayaks through the subterranean footpath under the railway, and then back onto the Trent and Mersey Canal for a gentle paddle through the narrow remains of Plum Pudding Tunnel, and so back to the Ash Tree pub. The absence of a good bankside led to many of us attempting a dolphin entrance (straight in off the bank - nose first). Most of us made it but we did have one swimmer!
All in all a gentle four hour paddle taking in a mix of canal and gentle river. A great way to spend a sunny Sunday afternoon at the end of May. Mind you - its strange being in the company of others who refer to narrowboats as "barges" and know that it would be impolite to correct them!