Monday, September 25, 2017

Back on the Trent and Mersey, making a start on the Cheshire Locks.

We spent last Thursday, Mag’s birthday, tied up near Watery Lane up on the Macc. Apart from celebrating the special day I had the replacement top box to finish, and the weather was good for that.
So Friday we set off again, a fine day to see us down to the moorings at Poole’s Aqueduct.DSCF1232 

Mow Cop Castle up on the ridge
When the canal was built past Ramsdell Hall the landowner insisted that iron railings be installed along the towpath opposite the hall to allow an unobstructed view across the plain.

And what a view it is…

We stopped for water just above Hall Green Stop Lock, giving Meg a chance to enjoy the sunshine, then carried on, pulling in between the two aqueducts near Red Bull for the weekend.

We had a quiet weekend, an 11 mile run yesterday morning was tough but an essential element in my training for the Manchester Half Marathon.

We’d seen a boat called Annoula a few times while we’ve been up here, but never had the chance for more than a brief greeting. They arrived and moored in front of us yesterday, so we had a good natter over tea and cake.

Mike and Karen, NB Annoula.
Glad to finally meet you properly, have a good trip back to base.

It was under grey skies this morning that we said goodbye to them, then we followed on an hour or so later.

Over the aqueduct crossing the main line.DSCF1248

Past the moorings on the loop…

…and back on the Trent and Mersey Main Line at Hardings Wood Junction.DSCF1250


We turned left here, dropping down the summit lock of the western half of the canal.

Plants Lock

We had a good run down the first three locks, with full chambers set in our favour.

Poole’s Lock, with the aqueduct we crossed a half-hour earlier just below.DSCF1254

You can see why we scrapped the Roman numbering system in favour of the Arabic one, can’t you.. MDCCCXXVIIII translates to 1829, I think.
Pulling in at the Red Bull services for water and rubbish disposal allowed a couple of boats past, so we had a short queue at Yewtree Lock, Number 44. It wouldn’t normally have happened, numbers 44 to 46 have duplicated chambers, but 44 is currently having a top gate replaced.DSCF1256 

The paired locks came into their own further down though, with boats coming up having an empty chamber to use and us going having a full one.

Lock 46
The Anderson hire boat out of Middlewich has a crew of Canadians doing the Cheshire Ring, the same trip with the same starting point we did quite a few years ago.

We pulled in around the corner on the moorings near Lawton Church. This is the way to do the Cheshire Locks, 6 at a time.

I mentioned that I’m running the Manchester Half Marathon earlier. In the past I’ve run for either Cancer Research or Macmillan Cancer Support, but I wasn’t intending to run this one to raise money. However, a chance remark from a friend who rang to wish Mags a happy birthday got me thinking, and I’ve set up a Justgiving page for Macmillan anyway, even though there’s less than three weeks before the event. Any money raised will be of benefit to this donation-funded charity. So if you wish to help me towards my modest goal of £400 just go to my fundraising page.
Much appreciated.

Locks 6, miles 5½

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