Standish Woods

Yet another nice day today, and even warmer, though not quite shorts weather yet!

I walked the dogs along the canal this morning, then we drove to Standish Woods this afternoon.

Rocco loves wide open spaces at the start of a walk, and ran around like a mad thing…

Things calmed down a bit as we dropped down into the woods:

All too soon, it was time for a break (including water for the dogs):

But he still found the energy to retrieve sticks that we threw down the hill for him:

A really nice walk!

Gloucester Pubs

Another nice day today, so we walked along the canal into Gloucester.

You’ll see that Toby has found a rubber chicken…

We then tried a recently opened micro-pub in town, the Turks Head Inn:

We were made very welcome (OK, at that point we were the only customers), and the dogs were allowed off the lead:

Of course, all potential food sources had to be investigated, including the slops tray!

After sampling the beers and ciders, we returned to our favourite pub in the docks, The Tank.

And then weaved our way home along the canal.

Little Thatch

For the last few days, the evening dog walk has been to a nearby ‘Orchard’, where Rocco chases a ball and Toby gently explores the undergrowth.

Then on to the Little Thatch, which finally seems to be able to serve decent beer.

It was nice enough to sit in the garden yesterday, and the dogs enjoyed their ‘treat’ once Steve had pretended to eat it…

Robinswood Hill

It’s a lovely sunny day today (though with a cold wind), so we took the dogs to Robinswood Hill Country Park.

This was all new to Rocco, so he was running around at high speed exploring the place.

The park has an old quarry, looking nice in the sunshine:

A rare moment of control:

It’s a long climb to the top, but worth it for the views:

Rocco enjoyed having sticks thrown down the hill for him to fetch!

Eventually we walked down the other side and found some water (and mud) for the dogs:

A lovely walk, although the dogs still had enough energy to run around the garden together after we got back…

Dog Meet

Some of the local dogs, and their owners, meet in the park on Saturday mornings.

Rocco was a bit overwhelmed with all these other dogs who knew each other but soon found the brook to play in:

He also enjoyed running around with the other dogs and retrieving the ball over and over again…

Severn Bore

An early dog walk this morning up to the River Severn.

Rocco enjoyed chasing sticks down this hill – the lake at the bottom is overflow from yesterday’s bore.

When we reached the river, we were surprised at how many other people were waiting there.

Rocco enjoyed splashing through the puddles while we were waiting.

Eventually, the bore arrived, splashing over the bank a bit further down.

And all too soon, it had passed, though the river level stays high (sometimes higher) as the water floods in.

Thursday at Quedgeley

Another week, another break…

Rocco and I are spending a long weekend at Quedgeley. Journey went well, and the two dogs were keen to let off steam together in the garden:

Later on we walked the dogs along the canal to the pub for a few beers and an excellent steak dinner with all the trimmings. The dogs enjoyed the scraps!

We’re up early this morning to try and see the Severn Bore…

Weedon to Gayton

We had a nice long walk in the morning along a fairly pretty stretch of the canal.

No locks today, but just in case, Rocco was on a lead when ‘outside’ the boat:

All too soon, we were back at the marina without incident, though the high winds did make driving interesting:

We had to go along the Northhampton Arm for a bit to turn the boat around. I remember having trouble here with a much shorter boat many years ago, and despite the best efforts of our very competent skipper, the wind firmly wedged the boat across the winding hole.

Luckily a strong chap from the marina had arrived to help another boat turn, so with a lot of pushing and shoving, we eventually got the boat off the bank and back to the marina to refill and clean.

An interesting trip, but it would have been so much nicer without the cold, showers, rain, winds and mud! And a dog that realised that going in the canal was not a good idea…

Braunston to Weedon

We enjoyed some excellent beers and a meal in the canal side pub last night.

On our morning walk, despite getting grubby from all the puddles on the towpath, Rocco found the grubbiest ditch you could imagine, and ended up with the lower half of his body black and smelly. I was tempted to chuck him into the canal, but getting him out is hard work, so I borrowed a bucket from the boat and tried to splash water over him to get him clean – not terribly successful.

We then set off up the Braunston locks, and all went well until Rocco jumped on the boat just as it was setting off. After realising that I wasn’t on board, he was straight back in the canal. Getting him out wasn’t much easier than yesterday, but at least he was clean.

Note that Rocco is at the end of a lock gate. There wasn’t enough room for him to turn round, so he had to wait until the boat went through and I could close the other lock gate:

We got to the top of the locks, and I kept Rocco in the front of the boat as he was still dripping wet while we set off for the tunnel. Got him mostly dry, then opened the cratch cover to let a bit of fresh air in, then, splash, he was back in the canal. Very rude words were said…

We tried to get him back on the boat with the boat hook, but that wasn’t strong enough. I leant over the back of the boat to try to haul him in, then felt myself slipping, and the next thing I knew, I was in the canal as well. After a while, I did manage to lift him back on to the boat (a wet dog is very heavy!) and eventually got back in myself. So another half hour trying showering and changing… This time, I wasn’t taking any chances and Rocco stayed inside the boat.

Unfortunately, my phone didn’t much like the swim in the canal, but once dried out, the phone worked enough to upload the remaining photos. I suspect it won’t survive long term though.

Rocco stayed in the boat whilst we went down the Buckby locks – it was quite a challenge given the high winds.