We woke this morning to temperatures of minus 5 C but warm and cosy in the boat. A flick of the heating switch before I got out of bed ensured the shower room was warm too. Eric had gritted the pier back to solid ground so Ben and I managed to stay upright going for his first wee of the day. He's gone back to sleep and Eric is still asleep!
We've lost one of our circular dog walks as the towpath on the Prees branch it closed as is the canal for piling work as part of the winter stoppage programme. No sign of anything being done about the broken lift bridge which lies forlorn on the offside of the canal.I expect it involves lots of permission hoops to get it done.
We had to walk at Grindley Brook where the staircase lock is surrounded by barriers on Saturday but no work being done at the weekend. The cafe is all shut up for the winter too so no coffees for us. Ben enjoyed his walk although it was cold and foggy, it cleared later in the day.
Ellesmere has been visited a few times as it's where we usually shop as we can walk the dog alongside the Mere or along the canal while we're there. We passed a few boats paying the winter mooring fees to stay on the Ellesmere Arm, fewer than usual as the price has gone up again. Basically they are paying not to be hassled as they sit tight for the winter and still have to run their engines for electricity and move to get water. It's the same price as a stay on Llangollen Wharf and there you have electricity as long as it's working and a water tap next to each boat. It seems to be a winter mooring in a marina is becoming a better deal and we have quite a few new moorers in Whixall taking advantage of special deals.
Large expanses of ice have appeared in the marina so I expect the Prees Arm is frozen, we'll have to go an have a look. At least we wont be muddy with the crisp frost on the ground.