Just as we were setting off, in fact i had the key in the door lock, it started to hail stone, we waited. It was quite dark and the only good point was that it seemed to be brighter in the south, our route. Ten minutes later and with just light rain we set off wearing our waterproofs.
As we progressed, we met lots of dog walkers and we seemed to be saying ‘Morning” every few paces. We were nearly run down by bikers who seemed to get pleasure from sneaking up on walkers with their hoods up, unaware that they were only a few feet away. Get a bell or something, how hard can it be.
It was getting brighter and although rain was still gently falling it looked like our over trousers at least could be removed. As it happened we left them on, which turned out fortunate because very soon rain was pouring. I decided to put my jacket in the rucksack and just walk using my GoLite brolly. I was a good decision. I didn’t get wet and it was pouring for a good half hour.
I thought i had put the camera in the rucksack but then remembered i had left it on the sofa whilst we were waiting for the hail to stop. What a nuisance, that meant we only had a 3mb phone camera with us and not a full battery so the photo’s are few i’m afraid and a bit grainy.
It was good to see that as we passed Failsworth that the canal cleanliness was reasonable. The last time we passed it was full of shopping trollies, fencing, road cones and other detritus. Pretty horrible stuff.
The rain eased of and blue sky was starting to break through. Still quite humid.
There were quite a few places where the canal bank had subsided due to the heavy recent rains we presumed. Although the water board had fenced the dangerous towpath sections off the local brain dead had decided that the best places for the steel fencing would be in the canal blocking a bridge to narrow boat traffic. A mile or so further down we had a chat with a couple who were negotiating a lock and told them about the problem ahead.
Lots of wildlife was to be seen and included the usual Canada geese, swans with Cygnet, Mallard, Pied Wagtail and for the first time here we came across a city fox that was quite comfortably sunning itself and wasn’t a bit bothered that we were there.
One of the lock gates had a moth resting out, we did well to spot it.
We didn’t stop to converse.
The basin between the Rochdale Canal and the Ashton canal was under rejuvenation the last time we passed here. They have obviously spent a lot of money because it was very run down. It now gives narrow boaters a nice place to moor up overnight. Close to the city centre.
The bridge we were standing on for this shot was also new and very good design. We should have taken a photo of this as well, but didn’t. I looked on the internet for one but couldn’t find anything.
good. It is a horrible place at the moment, city planners should be ashamed at how they destroyed what was a lovely area.
It was now time to find Dorothy a chair, she had done well and deserved a break. So before retiring to a certain Joseph Holts establishment for a well earned beer we called in to the first cafe we came across for a quick snack and a coffee.
Yours truly in the Ape and Apple.
Walking back through town to the bus station we passed this renovated old Morris van. It was causing quite a stir from passers by.
We called in to the Rohan shop on the way back too. They had a bit of a sale on and obviously we couldn’t walk past without seeing what was on offer.
More to come on that one later.
All in all we did about 14 miles and had a smashing day out.