We had a pleasant cruise from Dunham Massey into Manchester on Friday. Fine and warm for a change. Most of my memories of cruising the Bridgewater involve varying amounts of rain!
It took us 3½ hours to cover the 10½ miles at a steady pace, then we filled with water, emptied a loo tank and pulled in to moor on Potato Wharf.
Leaving Dunham Massey, early for us, 09:30!
Expectant mum being demure…
Nothing much changes on this trip through Sale, Ashton in Mersey and Stretford.
The long straight past Sale, nearly 2¼ miles under just three bridges.
Sale Bridge is a good place to stop for supplies, there’re rings north of the bridge.
Ducking under the M60 the canal crosses the River Mersey, running from it’s start point in Stockport, out to Liverpool Bay. It’s formed from three tributaries, the Etherow, the Goyt and the Tame. It once formed the historical boundary between Lancashire and Cheshire.
Under the M60…
…and over the Mersey
Mags takes a turn on the tiller while I make a brew, Watch House Cruising Club behind
We were pretty well guaranteed to spot Canada goslings somewhere along here, I reckon Stretford’s got a bigger Canada geese population than Canada!
Waters Meeting is where the later, southerly branch to Runcorn and the Trent and Mersey (now considered the main line) joins the original route from Worsley to Manchester.
Along the last stretch into Manchester, past Salford and the old docks, new construction continues.
This wasn’t even here last year, they’d just started sinking the foundations.
Here’s how they do it. They drill a dirty great hole, put in a cylindrical framework of reinforcing bars, then fill it with concrete. Simples!
Drilling the hole…
Arrival at Castlefields
The most popular moorings are round to the right, up to Grocer’s Warehouse. But we try to get in on Potato Wharf, under the bridge to the left.
Moored on Potato Wharf
Pretty much the same place as last year.
I had a bit of dashing about to do, first a trip to Maplins to buy a new TV amplifier, then Sainsbury’s for groceries, and finally a ride on the Metro up to Droylsden to pick up another solar panel. The one I fitted in the winter was bought via ebay, but the seller is in Droylsden, so I’d arranged to collect a second, rather than worry about where to ship it to.
I don’t very often do public transport, but the trip on the modern tram was easy and painless, and only £3 return.
Metro trams crossing the canal near Pomona Lock
Today started out clear and sunny, so I set to and had the second panel fitted by late morning.
Taking advantage of “free” power.
With 70 watts of panel, I was getting 4½ amps at midday. Enough to run the fridge, anyway.
This afternoon we watched the coverage of the Great City Games on the BBC, when Deansgate, through the centre of the city, is transformed for the day into a sprint track. The events attract major home-grown and international athletes.
Tomorrow morning I’ll be heading up into town again, this time to compete in the 10k. My start time is 10:35, so I should be back on the boat by 11:40. Mags is staying home, we’ve visitors coming and they’ll not be landing till after I’ve left for the start line.
Wish me luck!
Locks 0, miles 10½