Thursday, April 28, 2011


After emptying and filling the relevant tanks just around the corner from the moorings, we were on the move by about 11:00. We had a very steady cruise, allowing a hire boat to get well ahead of us so we weren’t queueing at the first lock.

The electrified West Coast Main Line crosses the canal near Ettiley Heath.

Procession of overhead cable gantries heading south.

Just along here there was a young Muscovy duck enjoying the sunshine.

And the first moorhen chick I’ve been able to capture on camera this year.

I’ve seen a couple before, but there’re so shy and tiny it’s difficult to get a half decent picture. This one is about the size of an eggcup!

Brine extraction for the salt industry has caused so much subsidence in this area that the canal banks have been raised a couple of times to keep the water in.

Raised banks.

We had to turn Crow’s Nest Lock, but arrived at the top of the pair of Booth Lane Locks just as another boat was leaving.

Booth Lane Top Lock

Meg and I walked to the next, and I’d just opened the top gate when 2 chaps arrived by car, complete with windlass’s. They were waiting for a boat coming up so suggested they work us through.

Needless to say I was back on the tiller before they could change their minds!

It gave me a chance to take a rare picture from in a lock.

In Booth Lane Bottom Lock.

These are very deep, dropping the canal over 28 feet between them.

We cruised alongside and then under the busy A533 (Booth Lane) when it swapped sides heading into Middlewich.

Rumps Lock was against us, but didn’t take long to fill and descend, then we were on the wide stretch heading for the town.

Looking towards Kings Lock and Middlewich.

We pulled in on the moorings above the lock, with the stern stuck out on mud. After a boat moved off a little nearer the lock we moved into the vacated spot, but are still on the bottom, although nearer the bank. I think we’ll have to lose a little weight…..

As you can see it’s been another fine day, after a cold night. Tomorrow should be cloudier but dry, so I intend to make a start on the gunwale paintwork. It took a bit of a bashing through the winter.

Locks 4, miles 5½

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