Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Morning mist to evening sun

Starting the day in misty conditions - all four boats preparing to leave
 At nine am yesterday morning we pulled pins and started our cruise into the city of Chester. There was a convoy of four boats, Matilda Rose, Critical Point, Caxton and Enchantress, so we would be locking two boats through each lock on this journey as we were now in the land of double locks again.
 The first lock of the day, Wharton's Lock, prepared and ready for the first two boats.  Matilda Rose and Critical lead off and Caxton and Entrantess followed.
 Entrantess and Caxton 'hovering' while we 'turn' the lock after the first two boats have gone through and get it ready for them. Notice the different bow shapes, Enchantress is a Dave Thomas hull and Caxton is a Reeves.
 The new Tattenhall marina with over 300 berths and now only 81 vacancies according to a sign by the entrance.
 This tree, fully adorned in its spring blossom, was quite stunning.
 More dredging activity
 As we entered Waverton, where we planned to stop for lunch before tackling the rest of the locks into Chester, there was a terrific display of daffodils planted on the banking opposite a new housing development.
 Caxton coming in to mmor up for our lunch break.  The sun has put his hat on now and the day is simply glorious.
Here they have used the canal dredgings to recreate the canal bank.
 This weeping willow is 'dressed to kill'

 We had stopped to water Caxton at Christleton Bridge when up pops this duck with a fish
 and she proceeds to tear it up and eat it.  I didn't realise that ducks were omnivores?
 Watered and away again alone this very attractive part of the canal.
 These donkeys were enjoying a late lunch of hay in the garden of one of the old lock cottages.
 My first sighting of ducklings this year.  The were an abundance of them as we worked our way down into Chester.
 Victorian water tower

 More industrial heritage

 We have now arrived at the ancient city walls of Chester which are built this bedrock. 

 Passing below the City walls we arrive at the Northgate staircase locks.  A set of three locks that are interconnected and very deep.  Jill had walked back up from the Telford basin where MR was moored to assist me work Caxton through.
 This moorhen and her mate had created a nest on the bottom beam of the bottom gate of the three locks.
Cheers, finally a well earned pint at the Telford Warehouse across from where the boats are moored up.

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