Friday, August 10, 2012

Friday 10 August 2012

Dover Lock to Dunham Massey
Miles21.5, Locks 0 Lift Bridges 1
An early start today to get to Plank Lane Lift Bridge before "Rush Hour" starts at 8 am. Then a short stop in Leigh for groceries and then on into the heat of the day and the long booring runs to Worsley through Trafford Park and Sale. We were amazed that as we were going over the Barton swing bridge we met two boats coming in the opposite direction. There is still not a good enough connection for pictures but they will come.
Yesterday Thursday 9 August 2012
Duttons Farm to Dover Lock
Miles 12.7 Locks 8 Swing Bridges 2
We have come through Wigan today and are on the Leigh Branch of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal. We spent the day travelling behind a couple from Wales who had been on the Lancaster Canal for 2 months. The lady was working the locks with the "Help" of her 2 young grandchildren so wre very slow . We met up with them at each lock and helped them through..

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Wednesday 8 August 2011

Melling to Burscough
Miles 14.5, Swing bridges 8
We stayed at bridge 10 near Melling last night and set off early to do the 12 miles to Bridge 31 before noon when the CaRT (BW) staff operating the lock, because of a control panel failure, went off for he afternoon. We made that and stopped briefly in Burscough to visit the shops and have lunch. After we went on to moor opposite Duttons farm near Bridge 35. M and B went to look at the reconstruction of a neolithic hut in the field opposite. They came back full of praises for the site which is the work of the owner after the discovery of several sites in the field where there was evidence that huts had been built there.
Liverpool to Melling
Miles 12.2 Locks 6 Swing bridges 3
A Rainy day for our departure hence no pictures. Apart from the weather the trip went well and we once again had the fun of navigating the deep docks as we made our way to Stanley dock locks. Once on the Leeds and  Liverpool canal we had a problem with plastic bags on the prop and one got on so badly that
we had to stop and go down the weed hatch to get it off.
I will try and get some photos of the Liverpool visit ready for tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Wednesday August 1 2012

Litherland to Salthouse Dock Liverpool
Miles 6.2 Locks 6
6 Pictures today of our arrival in Liverpool
Approaching Princes Dock Lock with the Liver Building in the background
 Waiting at Canning Dock Lock. There was some traffic on and off the River Mersey meaning we had about an hour wait to pass into Canning Dock
 Moving into Canning Half Tide Dock. On the left are the buildings of the Albert Dock.
 Passing through Albert Dock with one of the DUKW vehicles, in the far distance, full of tourists.
 Another DUKW passing our mooring in Salthouse Dock
 The moorings in Salthouse Dock
I will post some pictures of our passage from the Leeds & Liverpool canal to Princes Dock Lock tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Tuesday 31 July 2012 Part 2

Aintree to Litherland
Miles 6 Swing Bridges 1
A change of plan. just after midday when th NCCC crowd had joined us at bridge 9, a couple of C&RT guys turned up and asked if we were prepared to start our trip early by travelling to Litherland today. We all agreed and off we set. The canal has lots of rubbish in it and th4 cruisers had lots of trouble with plastic bags on their props. Once at Litherland we did a pump-out and moored up for the night. This post is being composed and sent from the nearby Tesco coffee shop that has free WiFi

Tuesday 31 July 2012

Maghull to Aintree
1 Mile, 1 Swing Bridge
We have moved up to bridge 9 in anticipation of the arrival of the rest of the NCCC convoy. It only took about 20 mins not even long enough for M to dry her hair so she did that after we had moored up. Waiting for our passage along the Liverpool Link starting at 9 am tomorrow.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Monday 30 July 2012

Burscough to Maghull
Miles 12.9 Locks 0 Swing Bridges 7
We are on our way again and at last we have managed to post updates to the blog so looke further down to catch up with our trip from the time we were in Lymm. I can now thank S for bringing the Nicholsons guides that we had left at home I never realized how much I referre to them whilst we are travelling. todays pic is of us moored by bridge 10 (close to Aintree Race Course) where we will wait until Wednesday Morning when we start our trip on the Liverpool Link
I Will not post tomorrow but will hopefully be posting lots of pics of our trip through Liverpool Docks and in front of the Three Graces on Wednesday evening

Sunday 29 July 2012

At Burscough
The boat stayed at Burscough all day whilst we went to the seaside on the train. Southport is only 13 mins away and the fare was cheaper than that on the tram that takes you to the end of the pier.

Saturday 28 July 2012

Crooke to Burscough
Miles8.4 Locks 2 Swing bridges 3
The scenery changes quite dramatically as we descended the River Douglas valley. Starting with rolling hills and finishing on a fen like plain. we have now entered the land of swing bridges we can expect more to come. The plus side is that we will next meet locks on Wednesday when we start the Liverpool Link

Friday 27 July 2012

Worsley to Crooke
Miles 26.1, Locks 6 and one lift bridge
We are now on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal just west of Wigan
We passed the famous "Wigan Pier" The one below is the real one
 And this is the pretender

Thursday 26 July 2012

Lymm to Worsley
Miles 15.7 Locks 0 Swing Bridges 1
Today's trip saw us crossing the western edge of Greater Manchester passing through sale stretford and worsley. We crossed the  Manchester Ship Canal at Barton
 Passed a lighthouse near Patricroft
Moored by Worsley Delf and had a visit from Ex 90th friends P&P.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Anderton to Lymm
Miles 17.3 Locks 1 Tunnels 3.
Shortly after leaving Anderton we passed through Dutton and  Saltisford tunnels then a long run and a lock with a fall of 3 inches and we were at Preston Brook tunnel the longest of the day. The pic is of us waiting to go through. The timing for the trip north is on the hour for 10 minuets then wait for the next hour.
 Once through we were on the Bridgewater Canal in most parts deep and wide. The remaining pictures are of the moorings at Lymm.

 Middlewich to Anderton
Miles 9.9 Locks 1
We were joined by our friends on Elizabeth and shared the only lock of the day, the Big Lock in Middlewich. A clear run saw us mooring just north of the boat lift. Pic of the day is of the run up pounds to the lift caissons.


Monday, July 23, 2012

Flashes to Middlewich
Miles3.2, locks 4

The last of our short trip days as we will join our friends tomorrow for the journey to Liverpool. We split our day travelling to Middlewich first thing this morning, going shopping having our lunch (fish and chips) sat on a bench below Kings Lock. After lunch we moved down 4 locks but only traveled about a mile befor mooring again on the Town Moorings close to the "Big Lock". The picture tonight taken about 15 mins ago is looking north from our mooring


Sunday, July 22, 2012

Weaver Aqueduct to The Flashes.
Miles 3.8 locks 0
Such a short trip today I didn't even take any photo's so I will put up some of the crossing of the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct I didn't show earlier.

 We think that the black boxes in the field were for the lighting up session that was to be held later that day to celebrate the first day of The canal & River Trust.
 The River Dee below.
 Almost across.
This final picture is of the mooring in the CaRT basin at Llangollen.
A short trip into Middlewich tomorrow hopefully S will be visiting us. I will try and persuade him to bring the Nicholson's Guides I left at home.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Nantwich to The R Weaver Aqueduct on the Middlewich Branch
Miles 8.5, Locks 2 days 2
No post last night as there was no signal to connect to the internet. It is looking good tonight so i will try some pictures. WE spent the first part of the day in Chester. The picture below shows the can as it runs along the city wall
 today we passed Venetian Marina and there are some big changes going on. About a third of the mooring pontoons have been replaced , a third have been removed and are in the process of being replaced and the rest will, I suppose , be replaced later.

 We bought some diesel at Aqueduct Marina adn moored up a short distance away on the River Weaver Aqueduct 48 Hr moorings at about 10.45 and did  --- well not much for the rest of the day.
final picture is of the clock on the wall over the High street in Chester.
We plan to do about 2hrs cruising tomorrow in order to make Middlewich by Monday.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

At Nantwich
All our travels today have been by Bus (Thanks to our National Bus Passes). This morning we handed our laundry into the maria laundrett for a service wash and caught the bus into Crewe. Neither of us had been to Crewe other than to pass through on the train or as a participant in a model railway show We were both pleasantly surprised. M did lots of shopping in BHS as they had a discount day and that plus her staff discount card really meant some bargains were available. I even bought a new pair of jeans and sat in the boat and shortened them by an inch this afternoon. On the way back from Crewe we stopped in Nantwich to visit the market then collected the laundry and back to the boat. A good way to spend a rainy day in Cheshire.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wrenbury to Nantwich
Miles 8.1, Locks 9, Lift Bridges 1
We set off early again as the weather forecast was for rain later, we also wanted to have a look around Nantwich when we got there. Best laid plans ------ We went straight down the 3 Baddiley locks only to find that the next lock, Swanley top Lock was closed for repairs. We had to wait about an hour and a half for one of the upper paddle guides to be replaced. It didn't delay our arrival at Nantwich too much we still had a good walk around.
 The stop planks come out after the repair at Swanley top lock
 Gralyn in the bottom Lock at Hurleston
Moored on the Aqueduct at Nantwich.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Grindley Brook to Wrenbury
Miles 6.4 Locks 10 1 Lift bridge.
A short trip today so we could stop at the Cotton arms at Wrenbury to use their free WiFi. I will also update the last few days with photos.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Ellesmere to Grindley Brook
13.2 Miles, 5 Lift Bridges and 1 Tunnel.
We spent yesterday at Ellesmere just loafing around and doing a bit of touch-up work to the boat. It was a nice day in the sun. I don't know if we are doing this the right way as today was raining all day whilst travelling. We managed to get a pump-out at the Ellesmere marina after waiting until they had serviced their hire fleet. It was worth waiting for though a very thorough job was done - in the rain too. Still no good signal for the uploading of pictures so I will make a point of going to the pub in Wrenbury tomorrow that has free Wi-Fi and uploading them then.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Llangollen to Ellesmere
Miles 18.8, Locks 2, Lift Bridges 1, Tunnels 2 and the Pontcysyllte
Yesterday we were moored in the marina at Llangollen and had a ride on the steam railway before looking round the town. Most of the time it was raining We were going to moor near the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct today to see it all light up but as we crossed it seemed that all the lights had been taken away so we decided to carry on back to Ellesmere, which was a good thing in a way as M. discovered that she had almost run out of credit on her mobile phone. There was just one space down the arm and it was just long enough for our 40ft boat to fit. It did mean cruising the last hour in a downpour. 
I will try and add some pics today but I am not in a good area for downloading pics so if the aren't any I will put them on when I can get 3G signal .

Scenes  from the LLangollen Steam Railway

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Ellesmere to Llangollen
Miles 19.3 Locks 2 Tunnels 2 Lift Bridges 1 and the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct
Quite a long run today but with only two locks to do you can get along. Mind you the two locks at New Marton which are about a half mile apart took an hour due to the queues of boats especially at no 1 where we were fourth in the queue when we arrived. The trip across the Pontcysyllte was great we were accompanied by music as the entertainment for the ceremony of lighting up the Aqueduct for four nights got in some practice. The lighting up is to celebrate the first day of the new Canal & Rivers Trust.

Two aqueducts for the price of one The Pontcysyllte and Chirk. At Chirk there is also a railway viaduct and ( on the left) and a tunnel Straight ahead.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Whitchurch to Ellesmere
Miles 11.97, Locks 0, Lift bridges 4, tunnels 1 (80 Mtrs)
It was still dull when we set off with the occasional patch of mizzle. As you can see no locks but we now have lift bridges. The further west we went the weather improved and we moored in the Ellesmere town arm in warm sunshine. We went for a stroll round town with my eye open for suitable material to make a temporary replacement for the cover panel I lost last night. A Builders merchant came up with some woven plastic rubble bags which looked like it could be folded and glued to the correct size. All that was needed then was to fit some press studs in the right places.
That done it was so nice we decided to stay.
The temporary cover panel in place. Pity they don't do green rubble bags

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Wrenbury to Whitchurch
Miles 7.8 Locks 10
Didn't set off until 11.30 this morning. We had waited for the rain to stop then took off for Grindly Brook. No lock queues but not good enough for photographs either. Moored just west of Whitchurch boat yard and managed to loose a part of our back cover in the canal. Normally it would have been easy to recover except on this canal there is a continuous flow so by the time I had got the grappling iron out it had gone. Hopefully We will be able to have a replacement made as we pass the makers later in this trip.

Monday, July 09, 2012

Clive Green to Wrenbury
Miles 14.7 Locks 11
It appears that we moored overnight at Clive Green as we discovered from the SU Society leaflet on “Country Moorings 2012” that we picked up at Hurleston Top lock. It is a great leaflet giving the locations of all the 48 hr moorings that the society have been involved in creating or upgrading.
Apart from the locks at Hurleston, where we went straight up swapping locks with a boat descending, we had to queue. Sometimes as many as 3 waiting. At least you can carry on any conversation you started with other crews waiting at the next lock. Went for a walk into Wrenbury before tea to the post office and there was some form of Build a Figure competition going on. The Theme seemed to be linked with the Queen's Jubilee as there was a life size guardsman, The Queen in her car, George and the Dragon – couldn't work out where the figure all in black fitted in though.
Today's Pic show M taking Gralyn through the bywash flow at Baddiley lock No2. Earlier she had seen a cormorate fishing in a similar flow. 

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Red Bull (BW) to Windsford Flashes
Miles 14.5 Locks 29
With that amount of locks in a day we can only be on Heartbreak Hill. At least we were going down and only had a short wait at Maklins Bank were one of the paired locks has been taken out of use. Even the weather was kind and the rain held off until after we had moored up. We have stopped on the Middlewich Branch of the Shropshire Union Canal just south of Br 22. The SU Canal Society hav created some decent moorings on the canal embankment overlooking the River Weaver and the topmost of The Windsford Flashes. To continue on the theme of what I forgot to do is make sure I had a picture size reduction programme on this computer. Although I now have my camera and some pictures I can't resize them for Blogspot until I can download a suitable programme
I have just managed to download GIMP and resized this picture of the lock pound between locks 47 and 48 on the Trent and Mersey canal. It is just long enough for two 70 ft boats to pass one another after one boat has moved over. Sometimes even now there is a "Mexican Standoff" between shorter boats each waiting in the lock for the other to come out and move over so they have a straight run into the next lock. Quite amusing to watch if you ave already got through - not so funny if you are waiting to get through yourself.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Gurnett Aqueduct to Red Bull BW yard
Miles 15.9 locks 16
Yesterdays feeling that the gremlins were out was re-enforced this morning. Within half an hour of setting off we came upon a line of boats at Oak Grove with tales of woe that a tree had come down across the canal somewhere ahead. The diesel boat Alton was there too and he reported that the tree was down south of Fools Nook Swing Bridge but it would not be removed until Monday at the earliest. We went on to Fools nook and moored just south of the bridge and walked up to site of the fallen tree. One boat was waiting and the skipper had been on to CaRT (Canal and River Trust, the new name for British Waterways) who were sending out a contractor this morning to sort things out. By 11.15 boats were moving again and the tree was a pile of firewood when we went past. The weather has been a suprise as the sun has been out most of the day, I even put some factor 30 on my arms. That was until 4.30 as we were starting the Red Bull locks and then we had a downpour that didn't stop until after we had moored. Sorry no pictures yet I haven't got into the habit of carrying my camera all the time.

Friday, July 06, 2012

Friday 6 July  High Lane to Gurnett Aqueduct

Miles about 10, locks 0
At last we are off!. Our initial plan was to be away in the first week of June following a session of bottom blacking on the slipway at the NCCC. Weather and other boats with urgent need for the slipway delayed the bottom blacking to the 3rd week of June. Once we were back in the water the loading of supplies, diesel and other essential self rescue items went ahead with an eye on the weather. We waited and waited and finally decided that departure would be today whatever the weather. We spent Thursday night on the boat with a lot more optimism about the weather than the rest of the country and finally managed to get the back cover off in a lul only to have the rain return as we set off. Fate was not on our side either we had not managed to travel between bridges 12 and 13 on the Macc when I noticed that the rev counter was blipping all over the place . We stopped under Br 13 and tightened the alternator belt and set off only to find that as we had reversed to stop in the bridge hole we picked up a load of rubbish on the prop. Once that was sorted we continued in the rain to Gurnett aqueduct where after we had moored the rain finally stopped.
It was when I settled down to write up the daily log did I find that I only had 4 days of log sheets left and that I had left all the Nicholsons guides at home too, great planning I must admit. Still I suppose that we will manage to find our way up to Llangollen and then to Liverpool to try out the new link (and see the departure of the cruise liner Queen Elizabeth) and finally return home via the anticlockwise Four counties ring.
IF the weather hold up – but I suppose that is up to the Jet Stream.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

2012 First Post

I thought I would just get the rust off the blog with any update on this years cruising plans.
We will no be starting as early as usual as we plan to have the boat out of the water in mid June to "Black the Bottom". Then we will be off to the Langollen Canal followed by a trip into Liverpool via the L&L and the new link into Albert Dock. We will follow that up by completing the Four Counties ring. A trip to the River Weaver and Chester may be on the cards for 2 weeks in September.

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