Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Visiting Trevor…

Yesterday we left the moorings near The Poachers, heading back towards Wales. Although cold it was at least bright and dry.

Crossing back into Wales over Chirk Aqueduct.DSCF2252

At least we could see ahead this time!

Just north of Chirk Tunnel, in the cutting, I spotted this buzzard…DSCF2257

He didn’t wait for us to pass beneath, though.

The sun came out as we approached Whitehouse Tunnel, shining into the bore from almost directly behind and making the tunnel light redundant for the first few yards.


We stopped overnight on the moorings above the Dee valley, and had a lazy morning before getting off at 2 o’clock. There was no point in moving any earlier; the repairs to the towpath railings on Pontcysyllte Aqueduct are still underway, so we couldn’t cross until after the workforce knocked off at three.

This chap was mooching about looking for breakfast.DSCF2268

We filled with water while waiting, keeping a wary eye on the steadily strengthening wind. It can be pretty exposed crossing over…

The workboat comes around the corner off the aqueduct, our cue to get going.DSCF2270


Unlike Scotland, Wales has only had a dusting of snow on the tops.DSCF2275
It was a bit blowy crossing over the valley, but with 80 mph gusts forecast it’s going to get a lot worse later.

Gate Road Bridge crossing the Dee just a little upstreamDSCF2276

I pulled in just at the upstream end of the aqueduct and trotted ahead to see if there was space at the end of the Trevor Arm. There was, so we threaded the needle between the fleet of Anglo-Welsh hire boats laid up for the winter.

We moored up beyond Scotch Hall Bridge after turning around where the arm splits.DSCF2278
Behind us the arm ends at a blocked-off bridge, where the Plas Kynaston Canal continued on to service the industries on the ridge. Collieries, a pottery, a foundry (built to cast the ironwork for the aqueduct) and a quarry all took advantage of water transport.

This was intended to be the main line of the route between the Severn at Shrewsbury and the Mersey at Netherpool. The project went through several iterations to become the canal we have today, nothing like the  original plan. There’s a lot more information about how the canal scheme developed on an earlier post here.

It’s likely we’ll stay here for the weekend now. Meg is going to visit the vet in Chirk on Friday, and the Tesco up in Cefn Mawr is only ten or fifteen minutes away for weekend groceries. And it’s pleasant, plenty of grass for ball playing…

I see that Paul Balmer of Waterways Routes has just released a new addition to the indispensable set of DVD-based maps of the waterways. The Middle Levels Navigations will be useful for those heading for the Great Ouse and Cambridge via Northampton and the River Nene. Pity Christmas has just passed… but birthdays are coming up, surely?

Locks 0, miles 5  


Brian and Diana on NB Harnser said...

I had trouble getting under the bridge into the end of the basin, first time I have been to the end.

Geoff and Mags said...

Hi Both
Yes, it's notoriously shallow under the bridge. We got through ok this time, albeit very gently, but last time I resorted to bow hauling! Must have had more weight on then.