Thursday 6 October 2016

Secret water

Saturday was our last water-stop. We know Erin Mae's water-tank is pretty capacious, but we don't have a gauge to tell us how near to disaster we've come. Some people seem to go for ages on a tank-full, but we like our showers and we have a washing-machine on board, so getting on for six days was a bit worrisome. Nicholson's guide said the next water-point was at the top of the Bosley flight – six miles and twelve locks before we could fill up!

And then Ken and Sue from NB Cleddau came to say hello before they walked down to Little Moreton Hall – turned out they'd moored just in front of us last night. The topic of the water came up, and they told us there's a water-point unmarked by Nicholson's. So we cruised on and, once through Congleton, kept our eyes peeled for the old BW wharf they knew about. Sure enough, about a mile after the aqueduct, there it was, though we had to work a bit to draw in alongside.

True to what they'd said, the pressure was really good – so good that it pushed the nozzle out of the port, sprayed water over everything in the cratch and filled it to the depth of an inch before I'd noticed (I was having a restorative CuppaSoup at the time).

So, for both good and less-good reasons we shall remember this place and can pass on the secret to other users. It's now well marked on our guide. Arthur Ransome's Secret Water, as I recall, was mostly about mapping uncharted territory.

Not now needing to ascend the Bosley locks for any reason except the sheer pleasure of it, we decided to tie up for the night in advance of the last winding hole before them. It's a fine spot.

The countryside to the right is dominated by a hill known as "The Cloud".

Everyone (including Ken and Sue) says the view from the top equals that from Mow Cop, up which we walked yesterday. After that exercise, however, we probably need a week's recovery before attempting some more of the same, especially with the wind being what it is. We feel we're probably at the point where we're going to turn around and drift back to home base, before this cracking weather breaks up on us.


  1. They're just talking about cracking on the radio just now. Oh - it's fracking, not cracking. Ignore me.

    1. Ho, ho, ho! But I would never ignore you, Halfie! Anyway, who knows, in a few years' time it may be a common saying: "Fracking good weather, ain't it?"

  2. Glad you found the "secret water". Many a time we have filled the tank, there and elsewhere - and flooded the front deck too...
    Even if you do turn round before Bosley consider a return cruise along the Macc. The views after Bosley get better and better, especially on the approach to Macclesfield. Popular mooring spots are Lyme Green, Gurnett Aqueduct and at Bollington. A gentler uphill walk is into Lyme Park (National Trust, expansive grounds, gardens and an interesting house) which can be accessed from Higher Poynton.
    Sue /Boatwif /nb Cleddau

    1. Thank you, Sue. We did actually go all the way up the Macc in September 2013. Peak Forest and then all the way round through Manchester. But I don't remember Lyme Park. We'll undoubtedly return when it's not just an afterthought as it was this time, and take our time to explore some more.