Monday, 31 May 2010

On to Rock Savage moorings, Runcorn.

From Acton Bridge we set off downstream, soon arriving at Dutton Locks which were against us so we had to pull onto the lock landing, not good, they are so high the only way you can get ashore is by taking a flyer off the roof and as you can't get right in close because of a ledge just below the surface it all becomes a little hairy but we survived, all good fun.
When you are in the lock you feel rather insignificant. It was then a trip through some of the loveliest country that you will see from any waterway.

We eventually moored at the temporary moorings at Rock Savage, between the chemical works and the M56 flyover, we certainly like the picturesque.

Sunday, 30 May 2010

A walk on the Weaver.

Yesterday we sat out the rain at Acton Bridge and oh boy it really chucked it down.Today the weather brightened and despite a brisk wind (howling gale) we went for a walk

along the Weaver, the yellow field is not oilseed but is actually buttercups. Just above Dutton Locks we found two things of note,

firstly this fine lady sitting on a nest of grandiose proportions

and then the sad remains of M.V. Chica, don't think she will sail again.

The top of Dutton Locks with the now redundant semaphore signals once used to call on Mersey Flats, Brunners and even small coasters, all trade has now gone from the river.

From downstream a narrowboat disappears into the gaping maw of the locks.

This elegant structure is the horse bridge across the backwater of the locks

and just beyond it the main line strides across the valley and then a short hike up the valley sides brings you out on the T & M.

A bit of a contrast in structures.

After two hours of walking we were glad when this hove into view. A couple of pints of scrumpy soon revived flagging spirits.

Every idyll has its downside and there are rather a lot of these overhead, personally I prefer the swallows along the river.

Friday, 28 May 2010

Vertical Descent.

Down on the Weaver and a chance to add some photo's.
Going back a bit,

Wardle Lock at Middlewich, now that is what I call a leaking top gate.

Croxton flash on the Trent and Mersey, the widened canal is due to subsidence from salt extraction, all that for a packet of crisps.

The Anderton lift is such an iconic structure that more photos are probably superfluous but it is an impressive bit of Victorian engineering, the sheer size is overwhelming.
Today we took the plunge (Perhaps a bad choice of words there!) and went down the monster.

You approach across the aquaduct.

We shared with a Canal Time boat.

You have plenty of time to to admire the views.

and then into the caisson.

At the bottom the gate opens

and you are out onto the Weaver.

BIG locks, these are the top gates of Saltersford.

We are now moored at Acton Swing Bridge, wouldn't it be fun to swing that one and watch the traffic build up on the A49? I can only say that the Weaver lives up to expectations, it is quite lovely, once you lose Brunner-Mond chemical works, and boat traffic appears to be almost non-existent.

Thursday, 27 May 2010

We are now at Anderton.

Is there nowhere in Cheshire which has a 3G signal? Several days ago we set off from Cholmondeston, got about ten yards and then slowed to a halt, an hour and a half later we set off again, having removed a floral pattern curtain, the best part of a fleece, including two zips, and three cable ties from around the prop, all good fun, or not.
Then spent the weekend in Middlewich, not by choice. Two days out in the country by bridge 176, T & M, what a beautiful mooring, even got rings and I got to paint the left side hull side, covering the worst of the winters wear, it won't be long before we knock it off again, it's only paint!
We are now at the top of the Anderton Lift and we're booked to go down tomorrow morning at 1015 for a few days on the Weaver but as usual not enough signal to download pictures, what do I pay all this money for? Perhaps one day we will have full 3G coverage. I know I bang on about lack of signal but I can't even follow other peoples blogs let alone load my own, frustrating.

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

On to the Middlewich arm.

We had a couple of days back at Beeston and another meal at the Shady Oak, slow roasted belly of pork with black pudding mash, totally bloated afterwards but oh! it was superb. So yesterday we headed out towards the T & M but stopped at Cholmondeston and today I had a days fishing, plenty of nice roach and I lost count of the gudgeon, all caught with my new 6 metre whip (£10 at Norbury, no expense spent, that's me).

A quick view back to Barbridge Junction, Jill couldn't get up to take a better shot as I was desperately trying to squeeze between the moored boats and another boat heading towards us and she couldn't get past me to take a properly artistic view.

Our first goslings this year, really cute, what a shame they have to grow up into Canada geese.

Friday, 14 May 2010

Tower Wharf.

This p.m. we took a stroll down to Tower Wharf, below the Northgate triple staircase, these impressive locks hide shyly under a road bridge so we didn't manage to get a decent shot of them.

The cutting runs right along under the city walls and in places

you can still see the pick marks where the navvys dug out this huge ditch in the 1790s.

Telfords warehouse still dominates the south end of the basin,

while at the other end the covered dry dock is showing sad signs of decay.

and Taylors old yard and side slip desperately needs a new tenant.

Railway at the top, road in the middle and canal at the bottom, they all meet at Northgate.

Why are this pair living in the middle of Chester?

The drake bullies the mallards unmercifully.
Tomorrow we move on, or back, au revoir Chester.

The Albion

As you walk around the walls of Chester, just near Newgate, you will see,

on the corner of a little street of terraced houses,

THE ALBION and if you want a real pub this is it, a haven of peace, real ale and great food.

They do have certain rules

and their own view on certain drinks.

The interior is a homage to the 1914/18 period but is far from gloomy.

The food is fantastic, described as ''What your mother would want you to eat'', this is Jill enjoying a ''Tunstall Tortilla''(a North Staffordshire oatcake), try the one stuffed with black pudding, bacon and fried potatoes, food of the gods. So if you are ever in Chester check it out, you will not be disappointed, but don't take the kids.