Wednesday 30 September 2015


Sounds painful, doesn't it! But it's actually quite a peaceful spot on the River Soar.

It would be significantly more peaceful without the A something-or-other rushing at an angle to intersect with the river about 400 yards ahead. But we're not complaining. At least we're not looking at the power station.

The Ratcliffe power station dominates the countryside for miles around, and was the first thing in view as we emerged from our overnight mooring on the Erewash Canal onto the wide watery expanse where the Soar and the Trent converge.

The Soar is very different to the Trent. Not half so wide.

Difficult manual locks with heavy, leaky gates and muscle-stretching paddles, belying the rural idyll awaiting as soon as you've got through one.

As with any river, the locks bypass a weir where most of the water rushes downhill. But they're normally protected significantly better than this wooden barrier held up by  few stanchions.

Generally the river has been very pleasant to cruise on this sunny last day of September. We still haven't managed to find anyone to do Erin Mae's engine service, but I don't suppose we'll come to any harm just yet. We did get some diesel at a very reasonable price, and we met some helpful boaters along the way, just when we needed them – at those locks!


  1. Changing the oil and filter is not difficult - usually much easier than on a car. You don't have to get underneath the boat! Or is there something else you have done at the same time which needs the expertise of a boatyard mechanic?

    Oh, and I think the locals pronounce Zouch to rhyme with Scotch.

  2. Thanks, Halfie. I don't disagree (I think) but perhaps a quote from your own blog today comes to mind: "Why does an apparently straightforward job take far more time than you can possibly imagine?" !! I was watching Andy do the job today and noted (a) he had the right tools for undoing an oil filter; (b) he had a PelaPump for extracting the oil. I don't even have a large enough container to put the old oil in! Once upon a time I changed a clutch in a Triumph Herald, and on another occasion, with the help of some friends, changed the engine in a Vauxhall Viva. But these days I'm very happy to let someone else do most of the jobs, even though I know that, in the case of oil changes, that disqualifies me as a "proper" boater!