Yesterday we moved from Rainy England into Wet Wales.
This journey is made over the Chirk Aqueduct, beside the railway viaduct crossing the river Ceriog valley. It is quite an impressive journey, 70 feet above the river, straight and narrow, only room for one way traffic.
The views through the railway arches are wonderful,
the green fields glistening with the rain.
I'm sure someone has tried!
Ian leading the way across, with two others following. This has been the busiest stretch of waterway we have come across in 18 months. So many boats travelling in both directions, mostly hirers from 4 or 5 different bases. When we came this way last year it was October, and much quieter.
Once you're over the aqueduct, it's straight into the Chirk tunnel, as long as no-one else is in there. We had to wait for just one boat to come through. Although narrow, one boat wide, there is a towpath running through.
Just above the tunnel is the railway station, and the main village centre is about 5 minutes walk away. A useful little village with a bakers, butchers, greengrocers, hardware shop,a Spar. The village church is open with a display of its history around the pews. There is also a Kraft food factory here who are now the owners of Cadbury and a delicious chocolatey smell encompasses the area. Here the cocoa beans are processed before being sent to the factory at Bournville. Drinking chocolate and cocoa powder is also made here.
So today with the forecast being better, though still wet, we had the even more impressive Pontsycyllte aqueduct ahead of us. Despite the rain, you can just make out the famous arches in the centre of the picture.
This triumph of engineering by canal engineer Thomas Telford is now a World Heritage Site and rightly so. It is an iron trough set on high stone pillars 126 feet above the River Dee. In its original condition, with renewals only having been made to the towpath and balustrading.
After waiting for about 8 boats to come across, it was our turn.
Tacet leading the way again, with 3 boats following.
Another viaduct crossing the valley taking the train through Newbridge I think from the map.
The river Dee rushing along below us. The recent heavy rains making it a fearsome force today.
And so we made our way along the narrow stretch from Trevor to Llangollen amongst the hills, the clouds, the sheep, the rain.
This time we have moored in the basin, paying for the privilege, (Ian will get over it soon), but we do get electricity here.
More from around Llangollen tomorrow.
6 miles, 2 tunnels, 2 aqueducts
5 miles, 1 bridge, 1 aqueduct