Sue and Martin above Zermatt - 2018

Sue and Martin above Zermatt - 2018
Showing posts with label Bridgewater Canal. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bridgewater Canal. Show all posts

Saturday, 21 March 2020

Friday 20 March 2020 - A Walk to Dunham Massey

There's not much text here, so feel free to click on a photo and scroll through the short slideshow.
On a lovely sunny (but cool) Friday afternoon, Sue and I escaped from 'C' word despondency for a walk to Dunham Massey and back, from home in Timperley.
Martha passed us on her bike, on the way to Lymm and perhaps beyond. It was good to have a brief chat with her.
Beyond the Bay Malton, a small dog secured to a blue barge admired our freedom to use the towpath.
The light was lovely today. Very clear air; very few aircraft; good views to the Peak District, to Winter Hill and to the windfarms of the South Pennines.
The hawthorn leaves are bursting forth.
This field by the exit to the towpath, is still thoroughly waterlogged.

The National Trust's grounds at Dunham Massey are open to everyone, and family groups were enjoying picnics in the sunshine.
It was busy, but not crowded, with lots of people taking advantage of the fresh air but keeping to themselves. The café was shut.
This is a location where I'll be taking many pictures over the coming months (if allowed). You'll notice how the scene changes over the year when I put them all together in a few months' time.
A sign of the times - posted at all entrances to the park.
Beyond the confines of the park, and before reaching the golf course, there were expansive views over the fields to Winter Hill, standing clearly on the horizon.
There were lots of golfers out on this Friday afternoon. We joked with one whose shot just missed us.
A pigeon near the centre of Altrincham wasn't so lucky, as a sparrowhawk swooped for its lunch of pigeon breast.
After passing St Margaret's, where Sue goes bellringing (the future of that must be in doubt), we headed through Altrincham and Navigation Road to conclude our 12 km stroll in a little over two hours. This was the longest outing to date for my new Scarpa Delta GTX boots; a small ankle rub has now gone, so after about 25 km of use they can be regarded as 'broken in'. I hope they are as good as the previous pair, that are still fully waterproof after over 2500 km of hard use.
All in all, a very pleasant interlude away from (mainly) ongoing depressing news.

Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Tuesday 3 December 2019 - Dusk in Timperley

Here we are, satisfying all those suffering from 'canal deprivation', with a much requested update on the state of our local canal.

Yesterday, after a hard day in front of a computer screen, I was allowed out briefly by way of a transitional interlude between study and kitchen, for a few contemplative moments beside the Bridgewater Canal, where the Canada geese were choking on their breadcrumbs after being released from the ice, which had thawed during the course of the afternoon.

The 250 year old canal runs absolutely straight for 3.5 km in this section between Sale and Timperley. The recently renewed towpath is one of the busiest pedestrian/cycle ways in Greater Manchester.

Normal service will shortly be resumed...

Sunday, 24 November 2019

Introducing 'Rocko'

Yesterday's forecast of heavy rain was 100% wrong. Today's forecast of a dry day was 100% wrong. Why do we bother looking at weather forecasts?!
After a 'just about dry' , Sue went bellringing and I jogged off in increasingly damp weather, to meet Kate and Co at Dunham Massey.
The autumn colours beside the canal in Altrincham, where lots of rowers were going through their paces, were pleasant enough, especially as they were accompanied by the dulcet tones of the bells of St Margaret's.
Towards Dunham the gloomy vista was enlightened by the surprising sight of two ladies on surf boards!
Kate and Co duly turned up, and the new member of the family, 13 week old 'Rocko', a Cocker Spaniel, went for his first 'big walk' - all of 2.5 km in the rain!
A deer was encountered. It must be used to dogs. Oscar and Rocko didn't quite know what to make of it.
Oscar is supposed to be reaching Rocko how to behave, which seems a little odd to me, as Oscar has not yet learnt (after about nine years), how to behave himself!

Monday, 18 November 2019

The Harmony Hounds at Eagley Jazz Club, in Autumn...

Happy Days are here again. 

Julia came to stay on this 'blue sky' day, for a stroll along the Bridgewater Canal towpath, then Trad Jazz in Bolton.

Monday, 21 October 2019

Monday 21 October 2019 - A Phoenix Park Circuit

I've written about this 60 km bike ride several times before - see for reports, route, and maps.
Today, Monday morning bike rides were rekindled when Paul B and I set off at 8.30 from Seamons Moss Bridge. A lovely morning, but with autumn taking hold, gloves were needed. And the route was damp, waterlogged even on the Trans Pennine Trail (TPT) where it passes under the M6.
We stuck to the TPT and some minor roads to reach Moore, thus avoiding the moronic dog walkers of Lymm.
The towpath from Moore has no morons, and was a delight, passing swans, a heron, lots of mallard, coots, grey wagtails, a cormorant, carrion crows, jays, and a fleet of Canada geese, as we continued to the turn off to Phoenix Park. Beyond the park, the café at Norton Priory provided its usual generous portions.
After a leisurely 'two coffees' break, we saddled up for the second half of the ride, initially on an excellent newly surfaced path beside the Bridgewater Canal.
Today's ride was taken at a leisurely pace, as we both have colds. It was a lovely way to spend a Monday morning, and we were back in time to hose the bikes down before lunch.

Friday, 11 October 2019

Friday 11 October 2019 - A Walk to Dunham Massey

A routine Friday morning stroll, and the first outing for some Scarpa Delta GTX boots bought nearly two years ago before Josie, at Alpenstock, retired. Their predecessors, an identical pair bought three years ago, have managed nearly 2500 kilometres so far without significant leakage, but are now rather worn, so the new ones need to be broken in, to avoid uncomfortable ankle rubs, before my next backpacking trip.
You may notice from the above picture taken on Timperley Bridge that it was raining at 10 am this morning. JJ had cried off, but Paul S appeared from the Metro station, so surprisingly I was not alone for the walk to Dunham along the Bridgewater Canal towpath.
Building on the Linotype site in Broadheath continues apace. The next two pictures are just for the record. Paul was wondering how congested the traffic using the one road out of the estate onto the main A56 road would be when the buildings are finished and occupied.
As we approached Dunham we spotted a brown insurgence into the cleaner canal water. An overflowing stream through muddy farmland?
The River Bollin, viewed from the canal aqueduct, looked pretty brown, though not all that full.
Leaving the canal at the Swan with Two Nicks, we re-crossed the Bollin below a weir that was fast flowing, but hardly 'in spate'.
Meanwhile, Paul B had failed to intercept us at Dunham Town, so he had to run down the towpath to catch us up. Here he is, splodging his way over the meadows to Dunham Massey.
Within the park there is a project aimed at children. Find the Lost Words.
Such as ...

The avenue of trees by the Smithy Pool is showing distinctive signs of autumn, which season seems suddenly upon us despite the continuing warm days.
The Lavender Tea Rooms served welcome coffee and cake. They were surprisingly busy.
A stroll through the golf course followed, before we headed off to our respective homes, the Pauls both being within easy reach of an early lunch.
For me, a pleasant 11 km stroll in good company, followed later by a trip to a nice Greek restaurant, then Moscow.
Well, the Moscow Philharmonic at the Bridgewater Hall... (no photos I'm afraid - they aren't allowed).

Monday, 23 September 2019

This, That, and the Other

Is it really a week since we were enjoying the sound of the Spirit of New Orleans Jazz Band at Eagley Jazz Club?
It's a couple of kilometres down Park Road from our house to Timperley Village. The road is lined by a mixture of properties and many mature trees. As I walked down the road one day last week I noticed that one of the very healthy looking trees was being trimmed. At least, that's what I thought I saw. Two days later it was clear that 'trim' was something of an understatement. What a shame... The stump, visible on the far right of the following picture, must be at least two metres in diameter.
We've had some lovely weather over the past week, and I enjoyed a sunny walk in rural Cheshire on Friday morning, on which I reported .
Meanwhile, walking down the canal towpath to the shops in Sale was an absolute delight.
Ken and Helen, who live in Ottawa - and who we visit each winter, arrived for a couple of nights. They are seasoned parkrunners, and joined us and 344 others on a delightfully sunny 5 km run on Saturday morning.
Jenn was Run Director for the day and she managed to conduct the formalities without falling from her pedestal! Well done, Jenn.
There was cake. Thanks go to those 'milestone' participants who provided it.
Coffees in the courtyard were consumed in a very jolly atmosphere, and we were delighted to receive a 'hello' message from our friends at Kanata parkrun near Ottawa - Ken and Helen's home run.
Full results are .
Another courtyard, that at Tatton Park, was the venue for lunch, where Ken, Helen, Sue and I were joined by Kate, Jacob and Jessica. No group photo I'm afraid.
Jacob (8), decided to practice being a teenager...
… there was a 'phone under there somewhere.
Everyone else went to look around the gardens. Jacob was glad to discover that we hadn't enough tickets on our National Trust membership for him and me, so the two of us went into the park for a game of frisbee. There were quite a few folk about, so points were scored for 'Random Hits'. I won - 1:0 - scoring with a superb 'bum' hit.
Then we went back to the courtyard, playground, etc.
It's raining now...

Wednesday, 4 September 2019

Sunday 1 September 2019 - A Bike Ride to Bolton and Bury

This was a bike ride with Richard and Jenny, in celebration of Richard's 35th birthday. Sue was also invited, and we assembled on the canal towpath outside 'The Bridge', by Dane Road. A passer-by kindly took the picture shown above.
We chose the Bolton/Bury route that I've cycled on 10 June and on 29 July, as described in earlier postings and .
It's a long, gentle incline from Monton up the loopline to Bolton, so a well positioned bench after 20 km offers an opportunity for a welcome break.
As on previous occasions, and despite it being Richard's birthday, we eschewed the delights of Starbucks (on the route as it leaves Bolton) and continued through Moses Gate Country Park to join the towpath of the disused Bolton, Bury and Manchester Canal.
In places the sweet scent of Himalayan Balsam was almost overpowering.
We paused on the Meccano bridge to view the disused locks that were once busy with passengers heading to Manchester from Bolton and Bury.
Lunch was enjoyed, despite a shower of rain, on a Meccano picnic bench the other side of the bridge. Richard was given a birthday present that took a bit of a hammering here, and may not have survived the day.
Leaving the canal near Sunny Bank Mill, on the outskirts of Radcliffe, we soon joined good tracks that follow the course of the River Irwell into Salford. We passed some attractive small reservoirs in Prestwich Forest Park.
After a short section of road, our route crossed an attractive footbridge across the River Irwell, before muscling its way through Salford to re-join the Bridgewater Canal towpath near Castlefield.
The showers started to merge into each other, and Sue had to be coaxed from under several bridges, but we did eventually make it home, just a little damp, after leaving R and J to find their own way home from Sale, before gorging themselves on the fudge from Liverpool.
Here's the route I took on 10 June - repeated today apart from a short section in Salford that I got wrong in June. Click on the image for a better version. From Timperley it's about 57 km, and takes 4 to 5 hours.
An excellent ride. Thanks for your company, everyone.