I had a quick add up when we arrived at the top of Bosley Locks. Since arriving at the bottom on Tuesday afternoon, I’ve been up and down the flight 9 times! Now, it’s a very pleasant flight, but you can have too much of a good thing. Ann is close behind, with 7 up or down trips.
The Dane aqueduct at the bottom of the flight
As planned, we worked Moore2Life up first, taking around 1½ hours.
Chas coming up Lock 10
We didn’t meet another boat till leaving Lock 5, about where you’d expect.
From this point on up there were boats at most of the rest of the locks. I left Chas and Ann at the top, walking back down with Meg to get us started. Not long before midday we were on our way, Mags on the tiller, me on the locks. I wanted to get going without waiting for Ann to arrive to take advantage of the half-dozen boats heading down. I wouldn’t have to close up, and the locks above would be set ready.
Mags coming up Lock 10, Black Prince boat NB Kiera dropping down Lock 11 in the background.
Swapping with another boat between L10 and L9
Well wrapped-up Mags and The Cloud
…..and she did!
I know, slapped wrist for breaking wash, but it was that or run aground on the left bank.
You can just see a figure under the bridge, that’s Ann coming down to help, amazed at how far we’d come up already.
Sun, snow and wind at Lock 4
We’d avoided being blown into the shallows up until meeting a boat between 3 and 2. I’d taken the tiller, knowing that it might take some heavy manoeuvring across the exposed pound, and headed upwind on leaving the lock, to give the descending boat room to pass downwind.
I expected them to come out as soon as we did; they’d have got past before the wind caught us and pushed us back across. But they waited in the lock. And waited. For what I don’t know.
Frantic arm waving was to no avail, so we ended up being blown across the face of the lock onto the shallow fringe.
I couldn’t push Seyella back off again in the face of the gusty wind, but, to give him his due, the chap off the other boat came back to give me a hand. With both of us on the job we got Mags floating again and into the lock.
Ann had been speaking to the crew above the top lock, he said they were waiting for the wind to drop. It would have been better for us if he had….
All the excitement was a bit much for Mags, and I took Seyella up the last pound and Ann sent us up Lock 1 while she (Mags) had a sit down.
Boats eye view from in Lock 1. I don’t very often see a lock from this angle…
This is the first bit of intense lock work she’s had to do since her “bit of a do” last November. She did very well, but was a tired afterwards. The wind made it a lot worse than it should have been, otherwise she’d have been happy to stay on the tiller the whole way up. She’s a superstar.
We pulled over, filled the water tank, emptied the loo tanks (what a relief) and got rid of the rubbish, then chugged around the corner to moor behind Moore2Life.
The summit feeder from Bosley Reservoir comes in behind the sanitary station, Meg gets a fuss while I empty the loos.
I’m pleased with the bike rack my brother made for me. We’ve been up 40 narrow locks since I fitted it, and John Sage has survived without a scrape. The only close shave was when I pulled off the service wharf at Etruria. The front tyre just clipped the high coping stones as I angled away, but no damage was done.
This could be a problem on rivers with high banks, in those circumstances I’ll probably take the front wheel out, shortening the profile.
Tomorrow we’re going to head up through Macclesfield aiming to moor at on Bollington aqueduct. The wind is supposed to be dropping later in the day. Hope so.
Locks 12, miles 1½