Anyhow our reward for hard work was a walk in the afternoon and I chose Shardlow to get my canal fix. Shardlow is on my doorstep but I don't have an affinity for the east side of Derby, but it is still a good alternative to the local parks for walking Leia on a Sunday afternoon. I also had reason to visit in that I wanted to see the new bridge put in to effectively link Sawley with Shardlow via food or cycle or horse looked.
There is a good free car park by Bridge 2 that we use and we set off walking boot clad in expectation of a muddy towpath.
Lock 1 is quite special as it is a place we used to bring our lads conkering when they were little. This was long before we had a boat. It was also the place my mum and dad used to cycle to on their tandem to fish - even in the middle of winter. My mum tells me that used to break the ice to fish, very keen !
The new bridge soon came into view. Very purposeful but nothing like as characterful as the old bridge. The contractors had had to build a new path to it, which was being used by walkers and horse riders alike. We stuck (literally) to the towpath.
After crossing - better pic later, I took this shot of the entrance to the Trent & Mersey. You can just see the remnants of the old packhorse bridge. You can also see a lovely obstacle for those poor boaters coming downstream from Shardlow marina - no easy turn in or out of the T&M for them.
The new bridge opens up a great walk to Sawley marina. We did not go all the way due to time restrictions but here are a few photos...
The Sawley cut flood lock was open you can see, I have never travelled this way so I am unsure of the correct procedure - I am sure it is detailed on a board by the lock. As you can see this bit taken you under the M1 and is a little noisy, but still great walking.
The sun was setting on the return so I was able to get a couple of nice (by my standards) shots.
The new bridge in perhaps its best pose?
Ok, just trying to add some framing to my pictures !!
Can't resist a sunset
I doubt this one goes very far but it is no doubt someones sanctuary
All in all a great walk and one we will do again - might be on bikes next time doing a large circular route taking in Trent Lock and other local attractions.