To Middlewich (April 26)

We left our delightful moorings at Dutton and travelled south in clear blue skies. We managed to arrive at Saltersford tunnel at the allotted time to go straight through without stopping. We reached the second tunnel, Barnton, and seeing no lights of boats coming north, we entered the tunnel. Barnton is far from being a straight tunnel so it was difficult to see what was happening ahead but we gradually became aware of a boat profile. We assumed, as any boater would, that it was the stern of a boat going our direction, but we were wrong! When a horn sounded we realised that it was a boat coming north with no lights! We then reversed out of the tunnel, about 50 yards, adapting the shape of our chimney coolie hat in the process. The boat was a hire boat from Middlewich. When Maggie pointed out that you should turn on lights in tunnels, and there are signs everywhere saying so, the response from the crew was a pathetic well I turned on the switch but the light didn’t come on. How they managed to find their way in a twisting tunnel in the dark is beyond us.

We passed Anderton again, it was noticeably busier than the first and second times we came through and the several cameras from visitors were focussed on us. Steve had hoped to investigate the Lion Salt Works but it looked closed. We stopped off at The Broken Cross pub in the village of the same name. We had a great Sunday lunch and joined the locals in watching the start of the Bahrain Grand Prix.

We cruised along the Dane Valley and moored up on the offside at the Bramble Cuttings mooring. It is a delightful wooded mooring with picnic tables, barbeque facilities and seats. The area is a BW and Broken Cross Cruising Club joint venture and is the site of a former clay pit. There are narrow gauge rails running up to the canal where Albert is moored. Several mature willow trees are growing between the rails. Presumably, the railroad was used to load the clay into boats. We sat at one of the benches and had Sunday tea; very civilised.

Bramble Cuttings moorings, Middlewich

We were not able to publish a post last night because we had no usuable internet connection. Tonight it is a little better but not good enough for images.

Images published later