The forecast for today was dry until 10am, with showers coming in from then onwards – so it was pins out and off we went to make the most of the dry weather whilst it lasted.
First stop for the day was at the nearby Claveley services. It had been pretty busy here on the way up to Chester, but at 9am on a Sunday morning it was very quiet. The water tap filled nice and fast so it wasn’t long before we were back under way.
Mario looks a little lost. Had a few too many beers on Saturday night perhaps?
We reached Hurleston Junction, and the forecast rain was now scheduled for 3pm. Good job too, as there was a long queue of boats for the lock – 9 in front of us when we arrived (a few boats from the other direction, in addition to those in shot). It was all very British, with everyone self-organising who’s turn it was next! Ellesmere Festival is on next weekend so it’s extra-busy at the moment – plus it’s the weekend and school holidays now.
The first lock is a bit of a squeeze due to the lock walls caving inwards, so it’s all manned with CRT personnel doing the paddles, open from 8am to 5pm. Apparently, they get about one boat a day that can’t get through; mostly it’s the older boats that have problems so we were fine.
1 hour 45 minutes later, and it was finally our turn! Sarah had made the most of the waiting time by doing some washing. Keeping with tradition, we gave the lockies a flapjack each in thanks. The rain was now scheduled to start from 5pm.
We moored up not long after the locks, and chilled out for the rest of the afternoon.
Sarah’s Mum and Dad video-called us for a catch up in the evening. They’re still in training on how to point the phone so we can see them both fully at the same time!
The rain never did arrive, bar an extremely brief and light shower that wouldn’t have even warranted a rain jacket.