Friday, 22 March 2013

We really have left !!

Tuesday 19th March to Thursday 21st March 2013

13 Miles, 7 Locks, 1 Tunnel – for this week

Totals: 1459 Miles, 1186 Locks, 4 Tunnels, 24 Lift Bridges, 96 Swing Bridges

We set off about 9am to head up into Stoke – Diane was wanting to get to Etruria Junction to do a self-pumpout and fill with water; Dot and Gordon wishing to moor at the bottom of the Stoke flight to visit an Asian supermarket.

Trentham Lock is set in such a lovely location and never fails to give a pleasing feel to it – this time we met a boat coming down – a couple who were back into boating and had just purchased a share in a boat. The anti-vandal lock caused them a bit of concern as it didn’t retract when unlocked so they were filling the lock by just opening the gate paddles – a bit of friendly persuasion with the windlass to knock the locking cylinder out of the gear wheel worked a treat.

The cruise up from here to Stoke is pleasant and chance to just sit back and enjoy – the light breeze and part sun didn’t do any harm at all either.

Locks completed with the help of a very nice young man on his bicycle and then around to the CaRT station for water and pumpout – all finished and we were just coming out and back onto the Trent when Dot and Gordon appeared from the top lock.

They were getting a changeover gas bottle just before bridge 117 where a 13kg cylinder is only ₤17.48.

Our preferred mooring spot is just past the Toby Carvery through the bridge, but from a distance it appeared full – our luck was in though, when we spotted nb Uccello just about to head off – we bobbed around for a little bit; exchanged hellos and goodbyes to them both (and Carrie passed over a voucher for the carvery) and we were able to moor right out the front. We noticed that the usual occupier of our position was in the marina – about time too – we had only ever seen that boat where we now were – we think it is another boat made to move on by the new enforcement by CaRT.

Nb Ewn Ha Cul then breasted up and we were quite settled.

Various trips to the supermarket, B&Q, Go Outdoors and others over the next day and a half ensued – relieving the wallet of valuable filling.

We found time for the movies as well – went to see the Wizard of Oz prequel called Oz – The Great and Powerful (in 3D) – very enjoyable.

Have to say that we really didn’t eat any of the munchies we had taken – we had been treated to Dot’s famous fish pie – really yummy too – and Diane had been busy with an apple and berry crumble with clotted cream – didn’t really feel like moving let alone going to the movies – but a very enjoyable night was had by all.

In between all of this I managed to get some work done on three of the windows – building up the frame to take the new double glazing with a good seal – very pleased with myself.
Moored up at Westport Lake

Icons of Australia

Anyone for coffee?

Thursday morning and we were off – this time up to and beyond Harecastle; I tend to think that until we have actually gone through Harecastle we are not yet really off cruising for any length of time – we have often just come up to Stoke for a small break and then gone back to Stone; but now we really were off – the tunnel is still a bit of a doddle – the Standedge does that to you.

The wind was getting up a  bit and both boats had problems turning into Macclesfield and it continued to be a hindrance as we cruised along taking in the “huge” lock at Hall Green.

We have moored up at Bridge 86 with an intention that should the weather be even half kind to us we would do the walk/climb up to Mow Cop.

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