Thursday 6 April 2017

Easter Cruise day 7 Chirk to Llangollen Wharf

This morning was slightly overcast and again quite nippy.  The cold breeze whilst abating a bit still had the cold bite to it and never really warmed all day.  Up at the usual time we readied to move at 9am.  As we got underway this group of canoeists came past so we navigated with care.

Looking a little nervous the young canoeists pass us whilst we re-assured them all was ok.
 Rounding the last bend Chirk aqueduct came into view. No one crossing so we proceeded straight on to the tunnel.  AmyJo struggled to make way in the tunnel but experimenting with throttle settings we got her through.  Seems the Axiom prop is performing OK so far.

Chirk Aqueduct comes into view

The view on exiting the tunnel
 We never met any boats on the way to the Pontcysyllte aqueduct but as we approached three other boats were waiting to cross.  Chris took Smudge on ahead with a radio and gave a running commentary of progress as boats continued to file cross towards us.

Some 30 minutes later, after several boats had passed, eventually Chris announced the last boat was almost over and our convoy could get underway with me bringing up the rear.

Starting the off over the aqueduct
 There was quite a breeze on this crossing but coming from the Port (left) side it kept AmyJo off the plating and so few bumps as we went.   We have crossed the aqueduct several times but each time is still as exhilarating as the first and, of course, the view is to die for.

Ladies and Gents we will be coming in to land in the next ten minutes.  Trays and seats into the upright position please.
 Up front the aqueduct was as busy as ever with the three boats, their crews and walkers.  More boats were queueing up at Trevor to cross so turning at the junction looked as though it might be tight.  Whilst astern not a soul to be seen.  It would seem the lack of boats downstream over the first few days was because everyone was up here at Trevor.  I guess we can thank Celebrity Carry on Barging for that.  Nearly every boat on the move was a hire boat.

Busy busy busy up ahead.

Serene and quiet behind

The River Dee below looks like a lot more water was running through this year
After crawling very slowly across the aqueduct whilst the hire boaters took in the experience, posed for photos and in some cases took it VERY carefully, we reached Trevor junction.  Mind you I was happy with the pace.  I like the aqueduct just as much as those who went before me so did not want to hurry either.  Passage was so slow even a very elderly gent could keep up with us.

Coming off the aqueduct and a cheerful chat with an interested couple walking alongside.
 It would seem my concern about all the boats at the basin making the turn awkward was unfounded and so I turned AmyJo onto the final leg without a problem.

Making the turn that went quite well I'm relieved to say.
 Whilst narrow and shallow this part of the canal is blessed with some fantastic views along the way.  Chris walked on ahead and relayed information of boats coming the other way to me and the other boat ahead of me for which her crew were grateful.

Now got to find somewhere to get Chris and Smudge back aboard

Lunch break for this couple and what a view to enjoy it

After several stops to allow boats coming the other way Llangollen hove into view.  The canal is high above the town so one gets a good view from here.

The main Bridge across the river Dee at Llangollen
 On finally reaching the wharf we turned into the moorings just as the horse boat was returning.  We found mooring on the short jetties a problem in the breeze as they are not long enough for AmyJo.  We did find one mooring along the wharf wall and settled with a pin on the stern.
Hercules pulled the boat back to the wharf office as we turn into the moorings.
 After a spot of lunch we walked round to the wharf office to pay our mooring fees then walked into town to book a table in the Corn Mill for tomorrow night.  We like the food here and this will be our first meal out since leaving Tattenhall.

The Corn Mill, we have a table booked in the conservatory on the right tomorrow night

Total distance:8.59 miles Elapsed time:5h0m19s Locks:0 Bridges:20 
Average speed:1.72 mph (1.72 lock/mph) 

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