Sunday, 19 September 2010

September Cruise - Day 3

It rained on and off overnight, and was still raining when we set off down the rest of the Audlem locks at 9am.  There were a few boats coming up, which helped.  There were more boats at the Hack Green locks.  When we got to Nantwich, we squeezed onto the end of the water point, in front of another boat.  While the tank was filling, Adrian went to the Nantwich Canal Centre shop to buy a new kettle.  We then moved through the bridge and immediately moored up for lunch.  The whole time we were in Nantwich, there were non-stop boats in both directions.

After lunch, we made the short journey to Hurleston Junction, to join the melee trying to get onto the Llangollen.  We waited short of the bridge, while Brian and I went to find out what was going on.  There were three boats in front of us, so we helped them all up the bottom lock.  One of the boats was an old 70 footer with a vintage engine and a completely incompetent crew who didn't seem to have any idea what to do.  It took them ages to get into each lock, and another age to get out again.  It was quite windy across the pounds, which are very short, and their slowness caused all sorts of problems for the people coming down.  At the top lock, the lock keeper gave them a right talking to, for allowing their children on the roof of the boat, among other things.

In all, it took more than an hour and a half from arriving at the junction, to leaving the top lock.  Still, in spite of the frustrations of the boat in front, it was all good humoured, and even the weather had visibly cleared up, with even some blue sky appearing.

Once out of the top lock, we quickly caught up with the slow boat, which seemed incapable of going any faster than 1mph.  Our tickover was too fast for them.  Eventually, they let us and the following hire boat past.

We continued up the two Swanley Locks, then moored for the night in a lovely spot between bridges 12 and 13, on some Shropshire Union Canal Society moorings.  We had a lovely roast chicken for dinner.

13 miles, 12 locks  (31 miles, 33 locks)

No comments: