Sunday, 27 May 2012

The Wigan Flight - 25th May

Again an early start (for us) at 8.15 saw us 'last' to leave our overnight mooring and head into Wigan. We had arranged to go up with nb Christal Haze who we met at the bottom lock after the turn - Lock No.85. We had already done the 2 Poolstock Locks so only 21 to go!
It was again a lovely hot and sunny day with a strong warm breeze.
Chris took the helm and we paired up sharing the lock wheeling.

We made good steady upwards progress, climbing what is about 200 foot. There was a variety of paddle gear, in a variety of states of repair and some gates had a chain winch to close them. All gates were heavy and some exceptionally so. 
I have been following the Blog of Steve off nb Albert ( and knew he was coming down the flight today - we met at lock 78, shook hands and exchanged cards - it was rather surreal as we then went on our separate ways!

From inside a typical lock - except no water streaming in!

All was going steadily when we encountered a very low pound at lock 76 and got grounded entering the lock. Whilst drawing down from the next pound Christal Haze caught a rope/tyre and stalled. A weedhatch interlude was called for!

We reached the top in about 6 hours and as we couldn't get a decent mooring at the junction, went onwards through the next Bridge No.59A and found a great spot on the New Springs embankment.
This section of the Leeds and Liverpool was originally part of the old Lancaster Canal, heading towards Manchester. The line of the canal, which is in water though very reedy and full of rubbish, goes under the bridge in the photo for about 200 yards. A local man told me that BW had cleaned it out with a view to starting up a marina? There is no sign of that now - and I'm not sure another marina here is required.

It was a good day's boating and locking and we certainly slept well!

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