Today I woke to a colder boat and a chilly morning with dew a plenty on the boat, a sign of times to come for sure.
The plan was for a 7.45am start to get to the Hurleston flight at 8am (we were just outside Swanley marina) in true lesson learnt mode we slightly overslept choosing to wake naturally rather than to an alarm so it was 8.30 when we eventually motored off our last mooring on the Llangollen for a while. It all worked ok as we arrived a the flight the lockies set the locks but we dipped onto the water point to give us the last top up before Shebdon and home mooring. It helps there is a decent straight approach to the locks so I kept an eye out for approaching boats and slipped us back into the channel when I saw a boat in the distance. This was fortuitous timing as we had the flight to ourselves apart from the last lock with the lockies setting the three towards the junction. I had a decent chat with one of them who had his Braidbar in Swanley marina that had a JP2 all the way from South Africa - a 1956 vintage engine.
Then Rachel did a 10/10 turn onto the main line with two boats queueing to go onto the Llangollen watching in admiration as Percy was swung round under the bridge and pointed home.
We emptied the cassette at the services and got an embankment mooring for the first time and after coffee we went into our second favourite town centre after Chichester - Nantwich.
Suitability fed and topped up shopping wise (wine) we slipped back into the channel at around 5pm for a cruise to take us just above the Hack Green locks to remove that little bottleneck in the morning. The no2 lock has really badly leaking bottom gates and takes an age to fill and empties the pound dramatically in the process.
This fella keeps following me ....
We are moored just past the first bridge above the locks - a lovely quiet rural mooring that will give me about 45 minutes cruising time in the morning before the Audlem and Adderley locks (20 in total) I fancy another dawn cruise so 45 minutes should see us at the bottom of the flight before 8am.
I got the drone out when we moored up for some shots of the area.
That is the 'secret bunker' behind Percy where the order to sink the Belgrano came from - I've toured it twice - a good day out if a little sobering