The walking around Devil’s Garden has been really enjoyable. Typical Cheshire farmland, large pastures and fields of cereal.
There’s a marked absence of grazing animals taking advantage of the lush grass, though. This area was badly hit by the Foot and Mouth outbreak in 2001, and it looks like the farmers have decided not to restock just yet.
Just near the mooring there’s an area of natural woodland along the banks of a clough running into the river. (I didn’t know they called them “cloughs” in Cheshire. Streams or brooks further south, cloughs in Derbyshire and Staffordshire, and becks up north).
It’s a magical spot, full of birdsong and the ground covered in banks of wild strawberrys. It’ll be even better when the wild flowers come out and the trees are properly green.
In contrast, the top of the valley has been planted in severe rows of ash (I think).
Trees on paradeWe finished our truncated trip back to Barnton yesterday. Another gloriously sunny day, just the weather to be on the river.
The pupils from The Grange school thought so to, around Acton Bridge we had to be a little careful as the water was busy with rowers.
The regular lock keeper at Dutton, Fred Coppenhall, is an author of detective novels. I picked up his first book, “Fools and Villains” as we came through. I’ll let you know what I think of it. He’s got another in print, and a third in the typewriter.
Still taking advantage of the fine weather, I’ve been working on those door liners today. I’ve got them assembled, and 2 coats of yacht varnish applied. Another 2 of those and they can be fitted.
Locks 2, miles 6