Friday, 12 October 2012

From Home to Home – last 2 days of our Summer Cruising

From Home to Home – last 2 days of our Summer Cruising

Monday/Tuesday 9/10th October 2012
Wimboldsley to Overwater Marina, Nr.Audlem
10.5 miles and 4 Locks

It was our last 2 days of cruising before the winter stopover. We savoured the peace of the countryside and, with plenty of time in hand, the slower cruising speed with the engine on a fast tickover.
As already said, we know this stretch of the Middlewich Arm pretty well, though there is always something new to see which catches the eye.

Attractive Stable Manager's house, near Bridge 18

The Refurbished Stables (Des Res style)

We have seen more kingfishers than ever before. These are delightfully colourful birds with some being quite used to boats, perching while we passed, while some patrolled the canal ahead.

Can you spot the kingfisher? Not the easiest of subjects to photograph!

There are two marinas on this stretch. The new Aqueduct Marina ( which always seems full?) and the older, established Venetian Marina.

See the newly changed 'curved' entrance to Aqueduct Marina

Looking back at Venetian Marina (now run by RJ Marine) from Cholmondeston Lock

Looking back at the narrows towards Barbridge Junction

We stopped at Barbridge to have a meal in the Pub. It was a quiet and reflective evening with some good locally brewed beer ( and reasonable pub grub on the higher end of things. We reflected on our travels back from Wigan and the few lows and many highs as we came around the Cheshire Ring.
We sort of delayed the start of this, the last day of our summer cruising. Wrapped up warm against the cold wind, the now southwards journey continued on the wide gauge of the old Chester Canal and soon we got to the busy Nantwich Basin.
Smart looking tug
 Caught up with a boat in tow, which kindly pulled over to let us through

Nantwich Junction Bridge No.92 – subject to a stoppage in December for repairs
 Approaching Telford's Iron Aqueduct over the A51

This section of the Shroppie is the 1835 Birmingham and Liverpool Junction Canal, engineered by the great and famous Mr.Thomas Telford. And a very fine example of the 'modern' later canals he surveyed on the 'cut and fill' principle.

The section south to Audlem is almost due south and opens up into the Cheshire Plain. It can be quite windswept here.
The last 2 locks for us are at Hack Green, also with a remaining stable block from the days of the horse drawn fly-boats.

Sitting in the middle pound below Lock No.1 – the Bridge 86 in view has been like this for simply ages. It was listed for repairs in a stoppage though this was withdrawn and then it was going to be repaired last winter?!
Leaving the Hack Green Lock No.1
Not far now!
Arrival at Overwater
We turned into the tight (with corners!) Marina and then to our new berth. This was at right angles to the cross wind and on my first attempt I overshot! Second time around, into the wind, bow first I edged in, not without a bump!
We are here for the winter!

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