Friday, 2 May 2014

Bilbo Baggins and the jolly men of Castletown

We untied from the bank at 09:00, by 10:00 it had started raining. As we pass under bridge 74 we swap counties from Cheshire to Shropshire. By the time we arrive at the Adderley flight of 5 locks the rain has stopped and the sun is out. I'm still having problems getting into locks through the bywash on these Shroppie canals. On one particular lock with a fierce bywash FL got pushed into the foliage on the offside, while making sure a branch didn't sweep mugs, camera, maps and binoculars into the canal, I managed to get FL jammed in the lock entrance. Paint brushes will be coming out sooner than I thought.

After the locks the scenery changes to lush gentle rolling hills, I expect to  bump into Frodo and Bilbo Baggins as they walk  the towpath to their Shire.

We stopped at Market Drayton for provisions, the town is a bit of a hike from the towpath, well signposted through a modern well kept housing estate. The town is a bit disappointing it doesn't seem to have a centre, a few of the shops are boarded up and the hotel appears deserted. On the bright side it has an ASDA, supplies bought we are on our merry way again.

We made a stop at Tyrley Wharf to fill the water tank and dumpages. Here we met 6 jolly men from Castletown flying the IOM flag from a window aboard their hire boat. Of course they all know my mate Clarky.

Onwards again through Woodseaves Cutting, here the canal was hewn out of solid rock by the pickaxes and shovels of the navvies of the day.

Moored opposite the Wharf Tavern at Goldstone Wharf which we will visit later after Sue has made a Shepherds Pie..................................................... I was so full after the pie we gave the pub a miss.

Baggins country

Someones sense of humour.

Hewn from rock

Narrow cutting.

Tall bridges

Straight cutting

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