Tuesday, 8 April 2008
Moored up in Barlaston village on Sat evening as very strong winds forecast for Sunday. Woke up Sunday am to 4" of snow - sorry, no photos as it had melted by the time the photographer got out of bed! Re-stocked at local butchers & excellent canal side Londis shop (wine cellar had gone critical) & the forecast winds never materialised, but got fed up with the constant foot traffic going past the boat so eventually moved half a mile up out of the village. Got up at 6.30 and set off at 8.00 to push through Stoke & moored up below Harecastle Tunnel at Westport Lake-beautiful spot and the dogs loved haring up and down the banks and chasing the ducks into the water (I take it this hasn't been banned....yet). Not,however, so good for the cats as it was too exposed (no ground cover) and masses of walkers, dogs, joggers & cyclists; so Daisy decided to take her evening exercise by running round & round the gunnels. By the time we'd finished our meal we realised we hadn't seen her go past the window for some time so I called her & she didn,t come. Full scale search of the area - no Daisy & a heart attack each later found her asleep under the desk in the office. She'd got so fed up with not being able to hunt that she had an early night! Today we came through the tunnel which was very spooky. Graham had a big torch on the back which packed up before we were halfway through, making it quite difficult to see the "duck or grouse" warnings on the roof. Took about half an hour and then we started descending down the aptly nicknamed," Heartbreak Hill". Did the first 6 of 27 today, mooring up by the pretty little church at Church Lawton. I opened the front paddle at one lock today and this geyser of freezing water shot up from the ground and dumped itself on my head! I think, tomorrow, we'll have to alternate & do 3 or 4 locks each else we'll never get through this -6 is about my limit bearing in mind I also walk the dogs a few miles.