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Archive for October 19th, 2015

Boat Blog: The Odyssey 2015 – Day 29

Posted by indigodream on 19 October, 2015

Wednesday 2nd September

Wigan to Burscough Bridge

Wigan Pier...

Wigan Pier…

We had a much easier day’s cruising ahead of us, so we spent the morning sorting out the car shuffle and topping up with supplies. Richard was up early and cycled back for the car – he reports that it was good exercise but also hard work, it’s a steep uphill climb back! He was appalled by the state of the flight – many of the pounds were down to the mud – not, apparently, because of vandalism but because of normal overnight leakage – you wouldn’t think it was possible. It must take ages to get the flight up and running in the morning.

While Richard was shuffling the car, I went for a bimble with the hounds, scouting out canalside parking (plenty at the back of Trencherfield Mill) and we had a look at Wigan Pier.

Richard got back with the car at 11am and I headed off for Tesco for supplies – we did a nifty exchange when I got back – the first week’s worth of dirty washing went in the roofbox and the fresh food went to the boat!

View bakc to Dean Lock - it's got it all, lovey locations, picturesque lock cottage and the great monolith of the M6 topping it all...

View back to Dean Lock – it’s got it all, lovely locations, picturesque lock cottage and the great monolith of the M6 topping it all…

But I hadn’t finished my travels – my car has a mysterious water ingress which meant that the footwells (front and back) on the driver’s side were squelchingly wet. When this happened in 2013, the garage could not find a cause, then it dried out and stopped happening. There are no obvious holes or loose door seals – it is not weather dependent; I guess it could be condensate from the aircon. However, to avoid wet feet all the way home, I booked my car into a Ford garage at Wigan so that they could, at the very least, dry the car out and maybe find a solution. I drove round to the garage, they assured me that their mechanics would look at the car the following day and I got a cab back to the boat. It all seemed like such a good plan, but it proved to be futile and disastrous in our second week – but I’m ahead of myself….

While I was sorting the car out, Richard moved back to the waterpoint outside the CRT offices and filled the tank. He was joined by nb Winedown, who were also on their way to Liverpool but on a slightly more relaxed schedule than ours. Nonetheless, we shared several locks with them and they were good company (always a relief!).

Kingfisher ;-0

Kingfisher πŸ™‚

We left nb Winedown at Appley Bridge but promptly caught up with an ex-ownerships share boat, alas, I didn’t write down her name, which is a shame, as they were also very pleasant locking companions.

The Douglas Valley is very beautiful with shallow tree lined valleys and widely spaced locks, but here the canal shares its bucolic character with many others and loses the uniqueness of its mountainous summit.

Nb Ellie May had recommended mooring at Burscough Bridge, and it certainly had some appealing restaurants. But there are very few visitor moorings by the bridge and we ended up a way down the towpath past the permanent moorings. It wasn’t the end of the world, but we were very glad that we had topped up with supplies in Wigan as it would have been a long walk to Burscough’s supermarket from our mooring.

The kingfisher sat awhile on this mooring rope - what a lovely sight is you were on board..

The kingfisher sat awhile on this mooring rope – what a lovely sight is you were on board..

We decided to eat at the quirkily named American diner “The Sinner’s Club“. Alas, it was disappointing, the service was lacklustre and the food was just “ok”; but what really wound me up was that they served my diet coke in jar rather than a glass; apparently this is trendy but I absolutely hated it!

The kingfisher photo is one of a sequence that we took – the bird stayed in sight for an unusual length of time. The blog isn’t the best place for displaying a sequence so I’ll put a few on here but you can see more in this album

Photoblog:

How the Wigan flight looks first thing in the morning...

How the Wigan flight looks first thing in the morning…

 

And this is why - leaky top gate and the bottom gate isn't much better :-(

And this is why – leaky top gate and the bottom gate isn’t much better 😦

 

Another empty pound on the Wigan flight...

Another empty pound on the Wigan flight…

Trencherfield Mill - it still has a working steam engine which is run on "steaming Sundays" - check out their website for details: https://www.wigan.gov.uk/Resident/Museums-archives/Trencherfield-Mill-Engine.aspx

Trencherfield Mill – it still has a working steam engine which is run on “steaming Sundays” – check out their website for details: https://www.wigan.gov.uk/Resident/Museums-archives/Trencherfield-Mill-Engine.aspx

I love a bit of life-size scultpure - Brixton station has some great figures, but this chap looks a bit woebegone!

I love a bit of life-size sculpture – Brixton station has some great figures, but this chap looks a bit woebegone!

 

Canalside des res for ducks....

Canalside des res for ducks….

 

I could fancy mooring ajacent to Lock 90 - it's a lovely spot...

I could fancy mooring adjacent to Lock 90 – it’s a lovely spot…

 

I loved the view along the Douglas Valley...

I loved the view along the Douglas Valley…

 

Derelict lock - now where was this??

Derelict lock – now where was this??

 

The railway is very close here.

The railway is very close here.

 

What's the history of this roundhouse I wonder - looks like the stub of a raditional windmill...

What’s the history of this roundhouse I wonder – looks like the stub of a traditional windmill…

 

Pill box - a strange sight this far inland...

Pill box – a strange sight this far inland…

 

Is this another piece of towpath are??

Is this another piece of towpath art??

 

We liked the look of this tree nursery - just as well we're frd frm home or we'd hae been in there stocking up with new trees for the orchard...

We liked the look of this tree nursery – just as well we’re far from home or we’d have been in there stocking up with new trees for the orchard…

 

The Rufford Arm - sadly closed - we met a lot of "refugees" who couldn't get back to their moorings on the Lancaster Canal..

The Rufford Arm – sadly closed – we met a lot of “refugees” who couldn’t get back to their moorings on the Lancaster Canal..

 

It's a miracle that these old structures have survived - this one from 1848 :-)

It’s a miracle that these old structures have survived – this one from 1848 πŸ™‚

 

And this fine mill dates from 1894...

And this fine mill dates from 1894…

 

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