Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Weaver Navigation & Chester (Weds 2/8/2017) - Nantwich Basin to Middlewich Big Lock

Engine hours start: 275.2 end: 283.1hr = 8 hours
Miles:15.5 Locks:8 Lock miles 23.5

This was the start of our two-week summer cruise. Last one was the 4 Counties Ring in 2015; last year we went to France.

This year, rather than doing another ring where you have to maintain a schedule in order to be back in time, we planned to explore the local area. Specifically we wanted to take the Anderton Boat Lift down to the River Weaver Navigation during the first week then head to Chester in the second week, perhaps as far as Ellesmere Port and the Waterways Museum.

We travelled to the boat on Tuesday evening after work and got settled on board. Had a little sort out of the various storage lockers and shifted some stuff into the car boot to leave more room on board.

On Wednesday, there were heavy showers at first but mild so very humid to start. Rain cleared but overcast and cool wind.

Constant flow of traffic in both directions and queue at Cholmondeston Lock so Alison left Andrew in hands of two other crews and popped into the Venetian Marina chandlery to get two longer mooring lines needed for locks on Weaver. Got back just as Andrew exiting the lock. Very smooth operation!

Alison foraged blackberries, damsons and cooking apples along the way. 

Some waiting at locks and tiptoing past moorings made for a slow day on the whole but once at Middlewich the sun really started to burn through.

Moored up immediately beyond Big Lock on the offside very close to the pub!
Top mooring - Yes, that is a pub in the background!
Slightly energetic currents due to boats powering away from the lock to deployed a spring which worked a treat.
Spring line made big difference to stable mooring

Excellent meal at the Big Lock pub. Odd to see it as normal rather than jam-packed as at festival time. Rain back just as we left the pub.

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