Thursday, 30 September 2010

A day dominated by the weather

Shroppie September
Calf Heath to Gnosall
24th September 2010

Index of posts in this series:
1 -  Calf Heath to Gnosall - this post
2 - Brewood in colour
3 - Gnosall village
4 - Gnosall to Market Drayton 
5 - Market Drayton
6 - Market Drayton to Wheaton Aston
7 - Herons
8 - Gathering winter fuel

Last night the predicted cold northerly air mass arrived, colliding with the muggy mild air coming from the south. This resulted in a huge thunderstorm and roads awash with flood water. We awoke to a cooler fresher day, temperatures had dropped ten degrees and Autumn had arrived. Shorts to a thermos in 12 hours - it can only happen in England!


Most autumns I take a solo trip along the Shroppie and just sometimes I invite someone else along - an oxymoron I know! This year I invited mother Ahab, otherwise known as Matilda and figured a trip to Market Drayton would be just the ticket. For each trip I try to plan something different and this year it was a decision to get off the boat and explore some of the villages away from the cut. The plan is to visit Brewood, Gnosall Village (not Gnosall Heath) and finally Market Drayton - we will see how we get on.

Wheaton Aston

The cold northerly wind was bitter - struggling into double figures and I found myself wrapped up in four layers, a waterproof and gloves and still my fingers went numb. It was real winter boating but the bonus was to travel along behind a chimney spewing woodsmoke, a scent I always associate with the canals.

The Staffs and Worcester was bustling with boats but after we passed Napton Narrowboats at Autherley the traffic died away and we has the Shroppie pretty much to ourselves all the way to Gnosall.
We did pause at Brewood, but our exploration justifies it's own post so more of that tomorrow.

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