Thursday, May 17, 2018

Sunshine And Help At Tyrley Locks

No wild by washes today at Tyrley

Going up!
Today has been a better day with sunshine and a volunteer lockkeeper at Tyrley Locks who helped us up the flight of five locks so I was able to walk ahead to set the next lock as there was nothing coming down.  Woodseaves  cutting was beautiful with the fresh smell of all the greenery. Once out of the cutting you could see right  across to the Wrekin, we'll know which way to point our aerial tonight without using an app on my phone. We stopped on Shebdon Wharf for our overnight mooring.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

One Of Those Days

We spent a lovely couple of days at Coole Pilate before we moved onto Audlem. Feeling lazy we just worked through  the first two locks and moored up. I did get some food shopping though.

The next day we went up one lock  and then  filled up with water outside The Shroppie Fly  and then got rid of the rubbish and emptied cassettes before we  continued up the flight of locks planning to do ten. It was much easier when we  met boats coming down. We stopped at Coxbank as the only boat moored up although a boat joined us later.

This  morning we stayed put until the rain stopped and then finished the last two locks of the Audlem flight. Hello to the crew of  NB Bristol Cream who  read this blog who we passed at the top

Next we worked through some very leaky Adderley Locks stopping at the top for a pork pies and cup cakes from the  Farm Shop.....yummy 😊.

A lovely cruise to Market Drayton and then we moored up and locked the padlock and realised we were locked out. Many thanks to Talbot Wharf who supplied a bolt cutter but it didn't touch the Master padlock (level 8 security) so it needed  a man  from Talbot Wharf with a  disc cutter and he cut through both sides of the lock to get it off.  Thanks again .

We walked  to Homebase to get a replacement padlock and then to Asda for a curry for tea. I put the curry  in the microwave and  then I pressed the button to open the door but nothing happened.  The only way I could stop it cooking was to turn it off at the main switch. Eric forced the door open to get the curry out. So it's definitely been one off those days.😕

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Sunshine After The Rain

Painting the boat poles at Coole Pilate
After an overnight stop at Wrenbury we  were away fairly early with just five locks to work through taking us to Burford according to my phone,  a few bridges  up from Hurleston. As the weather was cooler I enjoyed the ride.
A photo of Jaq 
The next day we set off planning to do the locks but came across Jaq on NB Valerie  so we pulled in next to her boat. A lovely afternoon on NB Valerie spent chatting  and drinking tea and coffee with nice biscuits too. Lovely to see you Jaq and hope your feeling better soon. I forgot to take a  new photo so this one is from two months ago when Jaq came to Whixall.

We stayed put for the night and went down Hurleston Locks the next day. It was really quiet on the lock flight and the lock keepers were helping too.  We moored up in Nantwich  after the aqueduct and went shopping in Morrisons as we needed some fresh stuff. It was easy to fill two rucksacks and we had strawberries and clotted cream with our  tea.

We're  currently at Coole Pilate doing a bit of maintenance. We've been sanding and painting the boat poles in the sunshine. Eric is now busy sealing around the wires from  the solar panels into the boat. Last night's heavy rain found the gap and we had a drip.

Just two boats right at the end of the moorings so it's quiet here too unless there's clay pigeon shooting later. We couldn't stop here with Ben the dog as the noise freaked him out and he wouldn't get off the boat.

We've enjoyed our first week's cruising. All's well on NB Bendigedig 😊

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Slowly Cruising Along

Five days in on our Summer cruise and we're a few bridges away from the four Hurleston Locks. The weather has been so hot other than a brief heavy shower yesterday.

Four lift bridges and four locks took us as far as  Wrenbury. With boats on the move it's easier at the locks  with a lock set ready for you and leaving the gates open for the waiting boat. Some new boaters didn't  know that it's  one boat up and one down but we explained that it had to be emptied for them to use it so a boat might as well use it to come down.

We stopped just after   Church Liftbridge to go and do a bit  of shopping at the Spar.   The trees provided up with some shade so we decided to stay put as it was so hot.

The towpath between Wrenbury  and Baddesley Locks is still  in need of some TLC with lots of mud and fenced off sections where the sides have given way. It's been like it for years and now the fences are failing too.

We're in no rush so we've cruised a few hours in the mornings and stopped  by midday for the last few days. We're  enjoying  been out of Whixall Marina even though we love living there. The trees are so fresh and green and the birds serenade us as we cruise along. Not so keen on the dawn chorus though 😕.

Saturday, May 05, 2018

Out Cruising For The Summer

Going down Grindley Brook staircase locks.

Grindley Brook bottom lock
We left Whixall Marina yesterday morning after filling up with fuel. For a nice change it wasn't windy. We were soon through the two lift bridges on the Prees Arm but  the new lift bridge needs a lot of turns to go up and down just like the next one at the old scrap yard. I waited and let a following boat through and he returned the favour at the next  lift bridge. We moored up soon after on the outskirts of Whitchurch.

Today we had three more lift bridges so more exercise for my arms! As we arrived above Grindley Brook staircase we didn't have to wait. Six locks later we were at the bottom of the flght. Is this a holiday? My arms don't think so....... I must be  very unfit! We moored up for lunch and that's me done for the day. I nearly forgot to say the weather is gorgeous.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Back To Whixall Marina

A trip into Wrexham sorted out a new aerial from Screwfix. It's a cheap compact log periodic aerial recommended for boats and caravans.  We pointed it at the relay transmitter on top of the hill opposite the mooring basin at Llangollen and it got 38 channels including HD without any boosters. It may be an easier option when we're  out cruising as its easy to  erect once we use an app on the phone to tell us the direction and orientation.

We spent a  pleasant  few days in Llangollen before it was time to head back to Whixall. Sometimes it's a pity you're restricted to 48 hours as it was so quiet with just ten boats each night. We'd moored up next to a side wall as there was space which was nicer than floating pontoons. It was nice to have electricity too.

Cruising the narrow sections from Llangollen we didn't  see a moving boat although I walked ahead just in case. Our only holdup was a wait for five boats coming across the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct. Jones the trip boat arrived so we let him go first and followed him across.

Progress is always easier going with the flow of the water and a several hours later we'd  moored up below New Marton Locks in the peace and quiet. Unusually the locks were deserted, often you queue there.

The following morning the hire boats were out in force  but by the time we were ready to move it was quieter. It was inevitable that if we met a boat it was  at a bridge holes but it's all good fun.

Arriving back in Whixall Marina it was windy.......nothing new there. Soon we were moored up and connected to phone and electric .......we're home 😊.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Crossing The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct

I didn't  look down  😕

A lovely sunny day today as we headed for Llangollen. Quite a few boats on the move so it was a bit chaotic as we headed from the Fron Liftbridge. The number of turns with the windlass to get it up and down were endless but we got there in the end. Approaching the aqueduct we were in luck as we could follow a boat already crossing and then a left turn and we were on our way.

A lovely cruise in sunshine with no holdups other than Eric waiting for me to tell him the narrow sections were clear. I walked the first narrows and rang him to tell him was clear. A boater didn't want to wait as he believed it as his right of way because that's the way the water flowed! I put him straight telling him you need to walk ahead to make sure nothing's coming. Some walkers' heard him complaining about me calling me a foreigner! Hilarious because I'm Welsh and we're in Wales! He must be English!

I walked as far as the Llangollen moorings and then rang to say it was clear so he could come through the narrow section. Through one more short narrow section and we moored in the basin alongside the edge rather than on the pontoons which was great.   We paid £12 for two nights and plugged into the electricity on the bollard.

We couldn't get a TV signal at Whitehouses last night so we watched the first Pirates of the Carribean film again.........'The Curse of the Black Pearl'. We've had the same problem tonight even though we can see the relay transmitter on top of the hill opposite the mooring basin......perhaps the Moonraker has died! We can use the internet to watch Netflix as long as we keep an eye on our usage as we've 20GB on Three rather than unlimited when we're  in the marina.

So a few days in Llangollen before we head back to Whixall Marina. We're off to Wales for the weekend.