Sunday, 15 April 2012

The Big One (3-1)

Sunday 15th April 2012

The Navigation Inn - Broad Cut Top Lock.

We are not moving today, the Navigation is a good place to stay and the moorings are 72 hours. The weather promised to be better on Monday so that's when we may move on. The Formula 1 event and a bit of football are enough to make us stay.

Sunday lunch in the Navigation proved that the food was as good as last week. Furthermore portion control is not a problem at this location. My sort of pub!

Wildlife - Today we saw a dead Jay floating past in the water. Such beautiful birds and quite a colourful one as well. 

Dog walkers and bike riders are out in force today. But enough of that! So today its a short tale - instead of me recounting what we did next.

Last year in a moment of madness we decided, as you do, to "do the Rochdale." Our first encounter with this waterway was climbing up the Rochdale nine out of Manchester. The locks were all set against us and we were having to drain each in turn.  We were somewhere around the halfway point and Mags had just emptied the lock in front of us. I was waiting with Rosie at the mouth of the lock. Suddenly, a serious amount of water started rushing down the by-wash and Pinned Rosie to the bank. The force of the water pushing us over at at an alarming angle. I shouted to Mag's to close the paddles at our end of the lock and to open the paddles at the other end of the lock. This had the effect of capturing some of the water flow into the lock. Rosie regained some of her composure and I was able to let her slide backwards along the canal side and out of the main force of the water. The water was now climbing up onto the towpath. After some time, the flow diminished and we were able to empty the lock and get Rosie inside.

At this point three "Gentlemen" appeared. They were busy flushing water down through the locks. They were doing several locks at the same time. I had a word with them about their activities. To which the answer was - "no one had told them that anyone was coming up." I was a bit shocked about the whole event and being relieved to be alive and that Rosie seemed to be unscathed. At the next pound, we decided to have a much needed break and a brew. On entering the inside of the boat we were shocked to find the contents of the fridge strewn about the cabin. What had been intended as our evening meal was spread around the floor and furniture. It looked like someone had vandalised the boat! It took about two hours to clean up the mess. I wanted another word with the "Gentlemen" who we were told by a bystander were from the Rochdale Canal Trust. The men apparently did this flushing of water down the flight from time to time. They had however by this time cleared off and lucky for them were long gone. As we climbed further up, we could see sections of the tow path was still wet from the canal water that had been released down.

The stupidity of individuals it seems knows no limits. 

The rest of the canal out of Manchester above the nine was in a sorry state. Low on water at most points. We were often scraping along the bottom. e soon learned to let the boat glide as we approached bridges to reduce the risk of hitting the prop on stuff that had been thrown in. I had a constant battle with the canal and the weed hatch. I was down the hatch at every second lock. Wetsuit, car tyre, car inner-tube, a pair of jogging pants, a jacket, and a large number of plastic sacks and carrier bags. Our tally of Supermarket trolleys observed was 24. The canal did not improve until we were through Rochdale on well on our way to Littleborough. It's the one route we said we would never undertake again. Other than to turn around at Littleborough and return over the summit.

Mag's got her Rochdale Summit Certificate from the Lockie. If you do go this route, you must try the food in the Summit Pub. Good home made grub.

Daily Total

Miles: 0
Locks: 0
Swing / Lift Bridges: 0
Tunnels: 0
Pump Outs: 0
Engine Hours: 0.0

Accumulated Totals
Miles: 617.3
Locks: 633
Swing / Lift Bridges: 102
Tunnels: 6
Pump Outs: 8
Engine Hours: 2062.6


1 comment:

  1. Mike Mags and the crew.

    I agree the Navigation is a good boozer and the food is good, the landlady is a real gem. Have you tried the fish and chip shop on the main road, their fish and chips are also worth the walk



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