Thursday, 10 May 2018

Higher Poynton (goslings out in force)


Wednesday was a fresher day than recently but at least it was still warm enough for tee shirts and shorts when we left Bosley in the morning.

Our mooring at Bosley for Tuesday night with The Cloud in the distance

The first part of the day's journey was to take us through Macclesfield and as it was only four miles away Karen walked that bit with Buddy.  After a mile we came to the first swing bridge we have been through for a while.  As it had a road over it rather than a driveway, footpath or farm track it was electronically controlled with the use of a British Waterways key.

Approaching Royal Oak swing bridge

At least it wasn’t the rush hour, so we only held up half a dozen cars or so.

Karen at the controls

Another mile found us at a second swing bridge.  This one carried a public footpath, so we were able to operate it manually.

We were soon entering Macclesfield and, as I probably said last time we came through here, you don’t really see much of the town other than the massive Hovis flour mill with lots of moored boats outside.  It was built in 1820 and was the original home of Hovis flour; it’s converted to apartments now.

The old Hovis flour mill in the middle of Macclesfield

We have noticed that the herons on this northern stretch of the Maccy are much tamer than elsewhere.  They stand on the bank looking for fish then usually fly once the bow of the boat reaches them.  They then land on the bank fifty yards or so further on and repeat the process when the boat reaches them again.  We have always wondered why they never fly the other way and therefore not get disturbed so much.  Around here you can cruise past a heron and it won’t move; I’ve only seen that before on parts of the Kennet & Avon.   I remember when we were moored around Dundas that we could walk past a heron standing on the bank just a few feet away.

Talking of birds reminds me that we got a great view of a kingfisher yesterday.  Unusually it was watching us and turning its body towards us as we passed it.   This meant we got a great view of the wonderful orange breast and not so much of the vivid blue which is the more normal colour to notice.

Rolling hills outside Macclesfield

Another four miles and we reached Bollington.  This is a small town with a couple of large mills beside the canal.  One of them was a silk mill and the other a textile mill.  Both have been converted to offices suites and small industrial units.

Just before reaching Bollington
We moored up for lunch opposite the second mill, Clarence mill, and the clouds started rolling in.  We did notice that I should have cleaned the windows at the top of the lock flight yesterday and not at the bottom.  Although they weren’t too bad it was obvious we had been locking recently

Because of the change in weather I rather wimped out and changed into jeans and walking boots before setting out again. 

I won’t include pictures or discuss stanking planks here as I have done them to death 😉, other than mention that nearly every bridge on this canal has its own stanking plank store.

   
While on the subject of bridges, there are several turnover bridges on this canal and they are called snake bridges in this part of the world.

Approaching Foden Bank turnover bridge

We carried on another four miles after lunch and moored at High Poynton just as it started to spit with rain.

Moored at High Poynton for Wednesday night…


…and looking the other way

Once we had tied up and got indoors it started raining properly and carried on for most of the evening.

There were a couple of dozen pairs of Canada Geese in the field opposite and on the canal bank.  At about five o’clock the peace was broken as a goosefest, as Karen called it, suddenly started.  They honked on and on for a good hour, but all became peaceful as the females started settling down on their nests, mainly on the bank side.  Until today we haven’t seen any of this year’s goslings, but we cruised past at least five families on our journey today.

Having got the final pictures printed in Congleton yesterday meant we have now completed the nine-picture photo frame of all our children including three partners:

   

Tomorrow sees the last push on to Bugsworth where we will stay for a week or so.  It’s not far, just four miles to the end of this canal at Marple where it meets the Peak Forest canal.  We then turn right and cruise the final six miles to the basin, no doubt calling in at Tesco in Whaley Bridge on the way.

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