Out on the Canal

Lunch on the TowpathWe’ve been out on the canal on our shared narrowboat since 26th July. Beautiful weather to start, then came the usual British Summer of rain, and the temperature dropping. It has picked up again the last few days but nowhere near as hot.

This is our last full day as we are off tomorrow. It has been a nice chilling break. We haven’t rushed anywhere, doing runs from Aston Marina, on the Trent & Mersey canal in Stone, Staffordshire, where we are based.

Resting on the Towpath
It’s not easy getting shots whilst we’re on the canal as I am driving the boat. So steering the boat and taking a shot doesn’t work so well, one handed and moving, whilst negotiating manoeuvres doesn’t bode well for good shots. Mind you I do get the odd one, but most of the time it is at the locks and we are having to wait.


Whilst at the Marina, my Grandson and I took walk to the lock to help boaters coming through the lock. Obviously I took the camera with me.

Working the Lock
Working the Lock

Winding the Paddle
Winding the Paddle


On their way
On their way


Dog or Duck
Dog or Duck


On the way back to our boat I saw these two guys enjoying a drink on the decking of the marina.

A Quiet Coffee at the Marina
A Quiet Coffee at the Marina

We took a run to Great Haywood and whilst at Sandon Lock saw this woman from a boat coming up to the lock. She was checking out her boat by looking under the bridge.

Checking under the bridge
Checking under the bridge

She then went to other end and chatted with a woman filling the lock.

Filling the lock
Filling the lock

We travelled up through Stone on yesterday, and as went through Star Lock I saw this woman crouched down behind the chairs and tables texting. It looked a bit furtive.

A Sneaky Text
A Sneaky Text


Next lock was Yard Lock, and I saw these ladies sketching the activity at the boatyard opposite.

Sketching at the Lock
Sketching at the Lock

We carried on up the locks, then on the way back down there was a big queue at Yard Lock as new hirers were taking out boats from the boatyard, and given tuition going through the lock. Once I was safely tied up I was able to get a few shots.

This couple were patiently waiting behind us in the queue for the lock.

Waiting for the Lock
Waiting for the Lock


I captured this candid of the guy who insisted he was ahead of everybody else, even though he was the opposite side of the canal.

The Man at the Tiller
The Man at the Tiller


I saw this lovely young girl, with the older lady, taking photos and thought she would make a lovely subject. As I drove the boat into the lock, the older lady asked if the young girl could ride on the boat to go down in the lock. That wasn’t a problem, but she had to run as the boat was already descending. As soon as she was on board on the deck she started shooting. She was from Switzerland, and this was her first time on a narrowboat. She was amazed by the lock and the workings. I asked if she would like to go through the next lock, and the older lady joined us.
At the bottom of Star Lock, they both got off and were so grateful. I’m glad I could help a fellow photographer to get some shots that she never thought she would.

Watching The Lock Workings
Watching The Lock Workings


Whilst in Star Lock and the young girl was taking her photos, I stepped behind and got this shot of a gongoozler. (A Gongoozler is someone who watches the narrowboaters)

The Dog Walker
The Dog Walker


As we were waiting in the queue for Aston Lock, the last lock before entering the marina, I saw this lady with the two Scotties. They were straining at their leads as a couple went passed with a spaniel.
I spoke to her as she came past and she told me the Scotties were Fergus and Finley. A very nice lady and two friendly dogs.

Killer Scotties
Killer Scotties


I hope you enjoyed my little tale of our time on the boat.

We are off on our next adventure tomorrow. More about that on our return.

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4 thoughts on “Out on the Canal

  1. Lovely shots Wayne and interesting facts too…..gongoozler! that’s a new for me.
    I like the last shot, typical Scots on holiday….always kickin’ off eh :0)

    Hope you enjoy the rest of your hols. Looking forward to your ‘Italian Job’.

  2. Very nice as usual Wayne, some good shots there, see you tomorrow.

  3. I’m back from a week off, without computer, ( that is holidays !!) only the smartphone to see your last walk and shots. I read the story but I’m glad to see the photos on my laptop.
    You had a nice day on the canal and good shots, of course. My favorites are the lady of “working the lock” for the lovely bokeh, the girl of “checking under the bridge” (you’ve got the good moment !) … and the shot number 2, with the two bicycles : I did’nt notice it at first glance but I opened it and I really like the compo.
    Have a good next adventure !!

  4. Great shots, as always. I really like the one of the girl crouched behind the table and texting. It really does look like she’s trying to be sneaky. Why not sit in one of the chairs, especially since the table was completely empty? Very interesting and very nice shots all around.

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