Although we’re leaving the Potteries, it’s still potteries al around us, for a while. Kilns, factories, museums.

All in one

All in one

Then it is about to get dark. Very dark. And very noisy. Tuinkabouter, the little guy with the red pointed hat inside the life belt, is a bit nervous. It’s Harecastle Tunnel, 2,926 yards or 2,675 metres long, with low headroom at certain places, and HAUNTED!

Harecastle Tunnel

Harecastle Tunnel

I’m not worried. I will actually find out, going through Harecastle Tunnel, that I like tunnels. Thirty-five minutes we’re in the tunnel, and when we come out it feels like only five minutes. Being not too tall means that I don’t have to bother with low headroom. The only thing that bothers me is the BRIGHT LIGHT at the end of the tunnel. It’s blinding.
Inside the tunnel it also is a bit cold. Especially with the extraction fan’s on full power. The are noisy as well.

I’m already looking forward to our small tunnels (Barnton, Saltersford and Preston Brook)…!

Low water level

Low water level

But before we will get there we’ll have a lot more locks to negotiate, as well as very hot weather, lack of water, and Gary checking our fire. By then we are safe back in good old Middlewich.

Good old Middlewich

Good old Middlewich

And what about the title of this post, I hear you say?
Well, when doing the lock I usually start with polo or T-shirt, jumper and fleece. At every lock I strip a layer, because the outside temperature rises, and I’m doing hard work.

What happens when I do a flight of 21 locks?
Nothing, the stripping stops at the appropriate moment…!

 

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