Wednesday, 30 July 2014

The bottom is too close to the top!

For once, we did have a plan of sorts.  Move up to the visitor moorings in Macclesfield, then visit the town.  Erm, no.... When we arrived, what are somewhat loosely described as moorings were full.  This town does not welcome boaters.  The banks were falling down at other possible spots so we came up with plan B,  Move on to Bollington, moor up and bus it back to Macclesfield.  Erm, no 2...

Yet again the moorings on the aqueduct were full, so we decided to move on and make the stop on our return down the Macc.

Plan C.  Move onto Marple.  Around this point it became apparent just how low the water level was.  Now we know from past experience that this canal is shallow, but exposed rocks and virtual beaches indicated something was amiss. If you kept to the centre of the channel it was ok, but when passing another boat, one or other ended up grounded.  A local chap said it was a foot down from the norm. Looking at the bank, I would say more like 6" but whatever, it made navigation and mooring a challenge.  We are not deep drafted, so what it was like for others requiring more depth, gawd knows.

As we had done a wash load en route, we stopped at the water point in Higher Poynton and topped up.  Just got into the bank with much grating of steel on stone.  Braidbar owners were already beginning to gather for their annual bash.  We crept on, just over tick over and bridge holes were negotiated with extra rev's as the boat was grounding!

We arrived in Marple to find that all the Moorings were taken.  Deep joy.  We did try to get in a little out of the town, but rocks protruding from the water dissuaded us.  All we passed commentated on the water level. Whether this has been caused by the reopening of the Ashton and increased activity on the Marple flight, I know not, but Ali did phone CRT, who rang back stating they were addressing the issue.

Plan D. Make for Bugsworth basin as the water is deeper.  By this time it was late afternoon and we feared that all the moorings would be taken if previous experience was anything to go by.  But no, arrived at the service block to see one boat moored in the finger immediately in front, so turned and reversed down this.  After settling in and showering, we walked around the basin and saw no more that ten boats in total. We then visited the Navigation and had a meal which was by any ones standard huge and really quite good although neither of us could polish it off entirely.

Last night we had a very poor Internet signal.  Seems a little better today.  We are staying put and will take a walk into Whaley Bridge and no doubt visit the supermarket for supplies.  The water level does seem up a tad this morning, so fingers crossed .

Adelphi Mill, Bollington

A garden on the rear deck

Goyt Mill, Marple

Mile post at the start/end of the Macclesfield Canal

Swizzles factory (the air is so sweet/sugary)
The owner of the chocolate lab appeared about 5 mins later shouting him, 
he was having a great time running along the towpath at full speed!  

Miles  17
Lift/swing bridges 4

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