Yesterday I booked a passage through Frankton Locks so we can explore the northern end of the Montgomery Canal. The schedule is this:Day 1
: travel, load boat, light stoveDay 2
: Tattenhall Marina (Shropshire Union) to Wrenbury Heath Bridge 15 (LLangollen Canal) (8 hours)Day 3
: Wrenbury Heath Bridge 15 to Platt Lane Bridge 43 (8 hours)Day 4
: Platt Lane Bridge 43 to Frankton Junction (5 hours);
Frankton Junction to Gronwyn Bridge 82 (the present limit of navigation) (Montgomery Canal) (4 hours)Day 5
: Gronwyn Bridge 82 to Frankton Bottom Lock (3 hours);
Frankton Bottom Lock to Whixhall Moss Junction (5 hours)Day 6
: Whixhall Moss Junction to Wrenbury Heath Bridge 15 (9 hours)Day 7
: Wrenbury Heath Bridge 15 to Tattenhall Marina (8 hours)Day 8
: load car, finish cleaning boat, travel
What's this? (I hear you say) Only eight or nine hours per day? Lightweight! But there's a good reason. Passage through the four Frankton Locks at the start of the Montgomery Canal has to be booked though BW, and can be made only between 1200 and 1400. Given that we'll be arriving at the boat after dark on the first day, and that Frankton Junction is 21 hours from the marina, our only option is a couple of "short" days and an early(ish) start on the following day to get to the locks. I had originally hoped to get to Trevor and back as well, but that was when I thought that the hours for Frankton Locks were 0930 to 1530 (now where did I read that?). Had that been the case we would have been at the locks on the way back first thing on Day 5, with enough time to do the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and get back to the marina. Not to worry, we've done Pontcysyllte before.
Cruising no more than nine hours per day will give us time to explore on foot as well, and we could pop down the three arms (Whitchurch Arm; Prees Branch; and Ellesmere Arm) en route too.
I haven't heard any more about Shadow's
overheating problem. I'll send OwnerShips
The last time we visited a Welsh canal was in April last year. This is the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal at the start of the drained section. There had been a catastrophic breach a few months before.