Trip Start Apr 01, 2012
67Trip End Ongoing
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Start temp 11.5c Finish temp : 16.0c
Distance walked 10.7 miles Time : 5 hours 3 minutes.
Lea Marsden lies at the bottom of a series of lakes and pools, angling fishing and boating among many leisure pursuits. This vast area was most probably the result of gravel and other aggregates extracted to form the Motorways and assist surrounding urbanisation.
As we walk a small causeway, on the edge of a lake stands a fisherman, it has no net, rod or line?
on one leg motionless and keen of eye, it waits it's prey, disturbed by our presence it takes flight and breaksast will have to wait.....
Early tea at a visitor centre allows time for a comfort stop, combined with a chance to read about the world that we seem to have left behind.
The Birmingham and Fazeley canal serves as a conduit for several miles. Approaching an occupied lock, the skipper asks if we can inform a waiting boat that the way is clear. Conversation with the waiting narrowboat crew leads to a line of enquiry, ' how long each year do you do this?', 'how much does it cost?', answers surprise us, this 43 horsepower, immaculate specimen can be ours for £80.00p per week, plus it's initial cost...Lost in thought the miles pass quickly.
Before leaving the towpath a yapping dog, jumps from it's boat to guard it's territory, bowed legged - it couldn't stop a pig in a passage, it is 'all mouth and no trousers'. We crossed the canal bridge with backs of legs and derriers intact.
Warwickshire, one of the Midland counties had fallen under a misplaced pre judgement, that it would be uninteresting and an area to routemarch. On the contrary 'the bears green belt' has been a pleasure. The H.O.E.Way, as previous trails, has been carefully routed and showcases the area well. Urbanisation and Motorway drone are present, but pockets of solitude and beauty exist, cuckoos and woodpeckers call whilst swallows swoop and glide creating a sense of wellbeing..
We enter Staffordhire, but only briefly!!!
Crossing a couple of fields, following obvious paths, we have missed our turning, puzzled we consult the map and wander towards a fine farmhouse, with outbuildings. We are met by a 'gentleman farmer' who enquires about our presence, carefully and with humour he puts us straight, we part and mention the blogg to which, he replies ' I am only a poor farmer and can't afford computers',. I mumbled to Sue 'well he didn't get that lot using an abacus!!!'