The drizzle stayed with us all night and most of today. Travelling was most unpleasant, tiny pinpricks of water droplets bombarding our faces. Ian's glasses were for ever needing a wipe. Anyone thought of making glasses with wipers???? We did the first of the Poolstock locks, a very slow fill as water poured out from the bottom gates almost as fast as the incoming water at the top. Just before I was due to leave, two small Goslings on the lock side and, all alone, were making their way toward the bottom pound. Normally this would have just got an Ahhhh from me but below lock, a swan family. After yesterdays incident I really didn't want the same fate to happen to these. So Ian rushed round to shoo them back to the top pound.
|Keep going little 'uns|
The drizzle was relentless so glad to arrive at Wigan junction where we knew we would stop for a while.. We needed to take on water and do the loo and the facilities were almost at Henhurst lock so after completing the left turn onto the Leeds & Liverpool we pulled onto the mooring. And then another discovery made. No rubbish disposal or water point! Another amendment needed in the Nicholsons then. Thankfully the Elasn was still there but the next water point isn't until we reach Dean lock at Gathurst. and to get rid of the rubbish is even further away, another 8 miles!
|Approaching the junction|
|Ignore the sign. Only Elsan available.|
|Henhurst lock. Note the fence rails to the left of the lock by the road.|
I came up then on one paddle as I refused to allow Ian to walk across the gates. Took a bit of time but thankfully we didn't hold up any boats. The bottom lock gates have no balance beam to push against either, just a lever that had to be wound and by the way Ian struggled, quite difficult to get moving..
|No pushing or pulling on the gates. Just winding gear.|
|Looked blooming hard work though|
We cruised by Wigan Pier. That's impossible I hear you cry! Conjures up images of of the seaside doesn't it but of course Wigan is inland and an industrial town. It was used to load the coal boats in days gone by and there is a ballad to the pier.
|So if you are told that there's a pier in Wigan Town, somewhere, Don't laugh it off like others do, look round you'll see it there.|
|Wigan Pier. That chap looks a bit fed up. Must be because it's raining.|
|DW Stadium home of Wigan Athletic FC and Wigan Warriors.|
|That drizzle was still with us.|
|Looking back at the same bridge as.....|
|Bracken well and truly stuck in 2008.|
|Icing managed to get into the side.|
|Ell Meadow locks, One disused and one still in use.|
|And another lock no longer needed. Crooke Lock|
And to the wildlife.
|The swan family below Poolstock lock|
|And one of the two orphans|