Sunday 6 January 2019

Home Moorings Friday 4 January 2019

Well I must admit I found the moorings at Wincham Bend very enjoyable. As we had a busy day ahead of us we were away at 9AM. Although the temperature did drop below freezing sometime over night the only Ice we saw was on a pipe bridge just outside our marina.DSCF1002

It wasn't long before we were passing The Old Broken Cross pub, on the opposite side of the canal is a new building site, while we have been away they have installed the footings, but these are now under 6" of water.DSCF0998

Outside the pub there are a row of mooring rings but for some reason this security conscious boater had chained and locked his boat, but he has not used a ring but driven his stakes in. I would have thought it easier to pull a stake than get a padlock off a ring.DSCF0996

It only took us an hour to get back to our moorings but at least that put something back into the batteries.

So this trip in 18 nights we have done 148 miles and 84 lock, I have also lost count of the number of Kingfishers we have seen, probably 30.IMG_0259

Today's Journeymap 19 2.2 miles in 1 hour

Thursday 3 January 2019

Wincham Bend Thursday 3 January 2019

Last night we decided to eat at The Leigh Arms which is on the banks of the River Weaver, we are on the Trent and Mersey Canal some 50 feet above the river level and about a third of a mile down the footpath, trouble is , its a third of a mile UP coming back.map pub

Our mooring is the blue blob and the pub the red ring

This morning I tried to time our departure to arrive at Saltersford Tunnel at 10-30 AM so we left at 9-45 AM. This would have been OK if I had managed to turn in the winding hole at the first attempt, but I didn't. Its not helped by a boat being moored on the towpath directly opposite the hole, well its an excuse anyway. We finally arrived at he tunnel mouth at 10-40 AM. which was OK as you can enter this way between half past and ten to the hour.
It felt quite mild when we set off, no frost about but the temperature did dip below zero last night, however by the time we reached the tunnel I was getting quite chilly so once clear of Barnton Tunnel I light the back cabin stove. I don't thing we saw any boats moving at all while we were travelling although one came by once we were moored up. As we are going home tomorrow I decided to moor at Wincham Bend which still gives us a couple of hours to get a bit of charge back in the batteries. Its the first time we have ever moored here, a couple of years back CRT re-piled the bank and while they were at it put some mooring rings in making it a handy wild mooring, just what we like.
Just one other thing, if you moor your boat like this please don't complain to me if your front pin comes out.DSCF0995

Today's Journeymap 18 7¼ miles in 3 hours.

Wednesday 2 January 2019

Bartington Wednesday 2 January 2019

I looked out this morning and someone had been dusting the place with flour, well it did go down to -3 last night and was still freezing at 10AM.DSCF0980

It was 11 before we got away, when we came out 2 weeks ago I noticed a water leak on a hose running beside the field, I expect it feeds a drinker for the horses that live there, well this morning this was the result of that very fine water mist all night.DSCF0988

I can't remember the last time the pressure was this high and not a drop of wind. the canal is just like a mirror.DSCF0986

Yesterday it was starlings on the wire, well today its white doves all swinging together at Orchard Marina.DSCF0990 We stopped at Anderton Services to fill with water and dump the rubbish before continuing on past the Anderton Lift and through Barnton Tunnel, we had a 15 minute wait before we could enter Saltersford Tunnel at 3PM. We weren't expecting to be able to come up here as CRT had planned a stoppage for the 2 January, but that has been deferred for a couple of weeks. Progress this afternoon has been a bit troublesome. Picking up debris at every bridge hole and vibration on the rudder, so after we moored it was a quick nose down the weed hatch, it the clear water I could see the problem straight away, a B&M reflective jacket round the prop, They are quite strong and the blades of the prop had gone through an arm hole a couple of times, but I fiddled it off, no way could I tear it out.

Today's Journeymap 17 11½ miles in 4¾ hours.

Tuesday 1 January 2019

North Middlewich Tuesday 1 January 2019

My word they like their fireworks in these parts, they started at about 8 pm and we went to bed well after midnight and I was still woken up by some in the early hours.
We pushed off at 10-30 am, not the first on the move I must say. I wonder why the starlings all like to sit right next to the pylon? DSCF0956It reminded me off offshore, in the winter they would all sit on the handrail all bunched together until one fell off, after lunch they all bunched up again and waited for the next one to drop.

CRT have just spent 9 months and a small fortune repairing a breach on the Middlewich Branch, I wonder if this will be the site of the next one, or if they will do something about it before then?DSCF0960

We were third in line at Stanthorne Lock, the boat we were behind said the one in front had problems getting the bottom gates open but we both managed OK.

I thought I would take a photo of the spill weir below Stanthorne Lock, I bet its all nice and clear now, as well as being free running. It looks as if it should have a good capacity.DSCF0965

Several of the boats moored at the bottom of gardens along this stretch have now returned and things seem pretty much back to normal. One thing I don't understand about the work is the new tow path above Stanthorne Lock, there use to be a row of mooring rings before the lock bollards so if there was more than one boat waiting to go down you could tie up, with the new tow path surface they have gone, a backward step.

Once through Wardle Lock we turned left and down the Middlewich 3 which are due to close tomorrow for 6 week to fit new gates and do masonry repairs.

We continued down through big lock where the Pussy Willow is already starting to burst outDSCF0972and moored on the top path mooring rings just before Bramble

Cutting, we were going to moor there but there were already 2 boats there so no point in crowding up.

Today's Journeymap 16 7½ miles, 6 locks in 4 hours.