Horse Bananas. 9th April

Bent House Lock 46 to Canal Wharf, Littleborough

The forecast is not so good for the next couple of days, we still want and need to get moving. Our main need today was for water. After breakfast we put on our waterproofs, we knew we’d be getting wet this morning, just how long we’d last for was still an unknown.

Time to move onwards and downwards

A paddle was lifted at lock 46 to fill it as we rolled up the covers, then Mick reversed Oleanna out from the notch back onto the canal. This is a lovely place to be, suspect it’s even nicer in the summer.

At the water point we’d been warned that there was a boat that has taken up root, they’ve been asked to move by C&RT several times, but it has fallen on deaf ears. The only boat we’ve seen moving since we’ve been in Littleborough had tucked itself in behind the overstaying boat, today we’d have to breast up to get water. But as I lifted a paddle to empty the lock I could see movement at the waterpoint, the boat was on the move also. Maybe they were hoping for a locking partner, maybe they were just moving on, but it was a welcome sign as we’d not really wanted to be filling with water across two boats.

Another wet day in the Pennines

As the tank filled it rained. As the tank filled the forcast wind started to pick up and by the time we were pushing back off the gusts of wind had started. We worked our way down the next two locks getting wetter every minute. Five years ago we’d had gongoozlers at Littleborough Bottom Lock discussing glasses of wine, today only hardened waterproof clad walkers passed, only a nod from them.

We pulled in and made use of the rings at the wharf, a restock very much required on the food and coal front. The weather forecast keeps mentioning unseasonably high temperatures, we’ve not noticed them here at all! The two bags of Ecoal Mick bought in Wakefield have been driving us up the wall the last few days. It not only creates SO much ash but it also takes an eternity to light, some decent coal woud be welcome.

Is this brick and extra layer of insulation? All the other buildings are stone

After a slight dry off and a cuppa Mick headed into town with the bike returning with two 20kg bags of Glow. Next job restocking the cupboards. By now we’d made the decision to stay put for the rest of the day and not head onwards in the strong gusts of wind, this meant we’d be able to get a supermarket delivery if one was available. A slot was booked and a big shop put into our basket. We just needed some things for tonight, so we walked over to the Co-op where pizzas and extra toppings were selected.

The rest of the day we hunkered down gradually warming up inside, coats drip drying in the shower, howling gails whistling through the windows, geese squabbling, there’s everything here, even Horse Bananas clinging to the hillside! Inside I watched more bake off and knitted with the occasional winge from Tilly at not being allowed out.

Blackcurrant Chilled Medication!!!!

Unfortunatly today wasn’t a suitable day for chilled medication despite the nearest shop selling my favourite flavour!

3 locks, 0.5 miles, 1 full water tank, 1 empty yellow water tank, 1 boat ahead, 1 food order, 40kg coal, 2 soggy boaters, 1 bored cat, 1 sock on it’s 3rd incarnation! 0 chilled medication, 2 volunteers stood down, postponed by a day.