Tuesday 29 July 2014

Big Trip Home Day 18 - Another Missed Opportunity and Home But Not Exactly

First of all our apologies for not posting the last two days.  Sunday night our was our meal with Joanne and last night turned into the early hours of this morning before we got back from the Shady Oak to AmyJo.

Today we are almost home, at least we're back in Chester.  

We had just released the mooring lines this morning when Mark from Dee O Ghee appeared to say hi.  Unknown to us Dee O Ghee was moored two boats back from us.  They had returned from Audlum historic transport festival and would be returning to the marina today.  It was too late to stop so we made a promise to meet up in the marina later.

The stretch of canal into Chester continues into the Cheshire countryside with only the river Gowy for company.  The route is petty in its own way but there is not much to photograph until Tattenhall Marina is reached.  We're staying out until the weekend so this time we passed it by.

AmyJo's Home port
Progress is slow once you pass bridge 114.  Golden Nook moorings stretch for over a mile and a half to bridge 116.  Tick over all the way you pass an eclectic group of boats, some new, some old and lovingly cared for and others ready for the graveyard.  For someone living in Chester I have to say this is not a good introduction to the city but don't give up, keep going you will get there in the end.

Moorings at Golden Nook seem to go on for ever.
Once clear of the moorings one can return to cruising speed for a few miles.  After following the A51 for a few miles the canal swings away towards Waverton and Egg Bridge.  For those low on supplies this is your first chance to shop in the village.

Leaving Waverton, here the tow path is much improved into Chester
Two gastro pubs line the tow path on your way into Christleton, the Cheshire Cat (highly recommended but very busy) and the Old Trooper (good food and reasonably priced)

The renowned Cheshire Cat pub and restaurant.

Old canal Mill at Christleton now converted to apartments

The Old Trooper and poles around collapsed embankment 
From here the canal descends into Chester via Christleton, Green field, Tarvin, Chemistry and Hoole Lane Locks.  Chemistry lock is named after  a nearby works making Gallic acid used in Tanning.  

The first major landmark as you approach the city, the old water tower
In the distance is the old lead shot tower.

Chemistry lock though no works exist these days

Little canal side cottages try to hide behind planted bushes, were these once
 homes for the chemistry or water  works employees perhaps?
 As you approach the city the old warehouses are now converted into plush apartments and canal side restaurants and pubs until cow lane bridge 123e.  Here a winding hole saves the boater from the depths of the deep Northgate staircase locks into the Tower wharf basin below.  If one does not intend going on to Ellesmere Port most boaters wind at bridge 123e

Our Mooring at Cow Lane bridge.

The Mill Hotel restaurant boat.  Notice the yellow flag above the bow.
This boat has rudders at either end and does not need to wind.

Cow lane bridge and winding hole to the right.
Tomorrow we'll decide whether to continue and stop in Tower Wharf or wind and return.

Our route today
Total distance:9.57 miles Elapsed time:5h14m25s Locks:5 Bridges:24 

Average speed:1.83 mph (2.78 lock/mph) 

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