Hurleston Locks to Marbury

Todays Timelapse video here:

Started nice and early today, I’m already enjoying the more twisty turning nature of this branch of the Shropshire Union than the main line. I like the idea you never really know what you’re going to see around each bend.

Just as we set off a fuel boat chugged past us.

Fuel Boat Mountbatten coming past us at Hurleston

We caught up with a sister boat of theirs further up the way. Great to see these old working boats still in action.

Met a lovely bunch of boaters on the first lock. A single hander on a stunning boat imparted some great knowledge on the waterway ahead. Then it was our turn through and I was assisted by the single hander from the next boat waiting to come down. He was based in Whixall and gave us some great mooring secret spots knowledge.

It was a chilly start to the morning. You do warm up working the locks and there is definitely a work out there using the windlass tool to wind the paddles to let water in/out and pushing against the big oak or steel beams to open the gate(s).

I got distracted by these little fellas:

We then reached the 3 lift bridges at Wrenbury. I got off expecting to have to manually lift the first one to find it already open by the boat coming down the way and they kindly let us past and closed it behind us.

The second one was different and opened using a key. I got off and went to the control panel to read the instructions.
– First turn key and the go and pull the stop barrier across the road to stop the traffic (ooh dear, definitely gonna piss some cars off i can feel it!)
-Second, press and hold open button until it stops
-Third, proceed under bridge with boat (glad i’m not single handed at this point as the delay would piss the cars off even more)
-Fourth, once clear press and hold close button until it stops (cue the white range rover to start moving before i’ve reopened the gates…….alright love, chill out!)
-Fifth, open barrier and go and then retrieve your key and get back on boat!

Got off for the last manual lift bridge to find that one open too, this one intentionally and left open! So I waited at the bridge hole like a bus stop and hopped back onto Māhina coming by.

At the last lock of the day we bumped back into (not literally) our happy hirers who were making their way back to base on a short hire. They were so lovely to meet and they had a blast. Stopped a few yards up for the night and had a lovely peaceful nights mooring.

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