Monday, December 22, 2014

To Market Drayton for the last bit of shopping.

We weren’t planning on moving yesterday, perhaps as well. It was very windy from mid-morning on. We only saw another two boats braving the elements. I had some wood to chop and a repair to do outside, so I was glad that it stayed fine.

The tunnel light bracket had all but rusted through…IMG_2969

…so I made and fitted a new one. I knew I kept those un-needed radiator brackets for something.

That’s why there’s some spare holes…

We had a spectacular sunset for the Winter Solstice.IMG_2974
Pity I couldn’t find a spot that didn’t include the telegraph poles.

It was still windy this morning, though it seemed a little calmer than yesterday. I thought about hanging on for another day, but tomorrow is also predicted to be blustery so there wasn’t a lot to be gained.

Off along Shebdon Embankment this morning.IMG_2976

At the far end of the embankment Cadbury’s built a processing plant to provide chocolate crumb. The crumb, produced from locally sourced milk and cocoa, is an ingredient in the finished product, and was shipped by narrowboat to Bournville.

Cadbury’s Knighton factoryIMG_2978

The disused loading canopy makes good shelter for several ex-working boats.IMG_2980

It was 6 miles to the locks at Tyrley, embankments and short cuttings to negotiate as the canal heads steadily slightly west of north. The embankments give fine views off to the west, but that’s where the wind is coming from too, making it a bit awkward at times.IMG_2986

There’s a long line of linear moorings around Goldstone, finally left behind at The Wharf Inn.

After the wide views off the raised sections, the next 1½ miles feels almost claustrophobic.

Woodseaves Cutting is the longest and deepest on the canal, the sides rising to over 50 feet above the canal.

 It starts just before Cheswardine Bridge…IMG_2991

…through rock-cut sections…

…and under High Bridge…IMG_2995

…before emerging from the gloom at Tyrley WharfIMG_2997

The working boatmen were very reluctant to cruise through here after dark, being generally a superstition lot they weren’t prepared to risk meeting up with the creature that supposedly haunts the slopes. We’ve been through once in the evening, and it’s not difficult to imagine there being a leering shape peering down from the dripping, overhanging vegetation…

We topped off and emptied tanks at the wharf, then set off down the flight of five locks.

Watering up at Tyrley

Mags heading down Tyrley LocksIMG_3002
She’s just passed the notoriously powerful bywash below Lock 4.

Below the locks a tree stump has had a face for a while, but this year it’s gone all festive!IMG_3004

Another 20 minutes saw us tied up near Bridge 62 at Market Drayton. Tomorrow I’ll be up in town shopping, getting the cupboards topped up again. A quick trip up to the market on Wednesday (always worth a visit) will be followed by a short cruise out of town to spend a couple of days out in the sticks.


This afternoon I felt the Christmas Spirit move me, so I dug into the storage under the bed and pulled out the decorations. We’ve now got a tree up…

Ho, Ho, Ho!

Locks 5, miles 7½


Nev Wells said...

She’s just passed the notoriously powerful bywash below Lock 4.....

I cannot think of a better reason to do the 4 counties clockwise than lock 4 ! Last time I went up I had a strong bloke on the bow role !


Carol said...

Enjoy a peaceful Christmas - we’ll see you very soon! xx

Neil Corbett said...

Actually I rather like the telegraph poles in that picture!
Happy New Yearbto you both
Kath (nb Herbie)