Monday 9 September 2013

There's clouds in them there hills

A change in plans means that No 2 brother and wife can't join us after all this week. So I shall endeavour to show them what they're missing!

First, after a lie-in, it was a stroll to the local post office to pick up three packages I'd had sent there, followed by a long walk down to the Aldi in Congleton. Since, inevitably, we bought more (and heavier) than intended, it was great to find a bus about to set out back up the hill, and get out our bus passes. A restorative coffee meant we put off lunch and got under way up the Macclesfield. It was a classic weather-girl-Carol "sunshine and showers" sort of day. One of the showers was a mega-downpour – but I don't take pictures in the rain.

The canal is beautiful, easily matching expectations, and it reminds you that you're hitting hill-country with alternating cuttings, embankments and hillsides.

Off to one side was the constant, lowering presence of the 1000 ft hill known as "The Cloud", with its ancient earthworks visible on the top.

We kept to the original plan, and tied up after about four miles, between the Dane aqueduct and the start of the Bosley flight of 12 locks.

Dave the belt-maker had said he could cheerfully spend a fortnight here, looking across the meadows and deep valley of the River Dane on one side,

and up to The Cloud on the other.

So we have a decision tomorrow. Up the locks, or up the hill. The hill's very appealing – but if we preferred to take the bus rather than Shanks' pony just to get from the centre of Congleton back to the canal, what will our legs have to say about The Cloud? Hm… Only one way to find out.


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