Shortly after Rob left to return to work (sorry buddy), I was completely chuffed (as they say here) to welcome Mt. Washington Ski Club friends Steve and Adrienne to the boat. They were in Ireland for a wedding and would be travelling on to Italy later; happily for me they took a side trip to Llangollen and a few days of narrowboating.

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Since they arrived at the Chirk train station, I was able to moor literally across the bridge. So they weren’t off the train more than a few moments and the adventure began…

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First, the tunnel…

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Then the aqueduct… (not THE aqueduct)…

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Then on to their first locks…

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And then, of course, no first day is complete without a pub!

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Okay, so I got the pictures a little out of order, that particular pub was a bit later. Anyway, we cruised up the Llangollen canal, following the route I had taken previously with Rob, to the famous Pontcysllte Aqueduct (and another tunnel).

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We had a great night and day in Llangollen before heading back to Chirk. Once we returned to their starting point, we hiked across country for a couple of miles to the Chirk Castle (sounding familiar yet?). No shuttle bus this time but the stroll across the sheep fields was very pleasant.

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I had a great time with a couple of great people, I am so glad they took the time and effort to get over to see me. We really had an amazing few days and they completely spoiled me!

After they flew back to Ireland, I headed back down the canal a little ways and made a turn onto the Montgomery Canal. This is a short side branch, only about 6 miles long. It has very limited access, as transit through the locks onto it must be booked at least 24 hours in advance, and only 12 boats each way are allowed per day. This made for a very quiet and peaceful few days, away from the bustle and rush of the hire boats. Wendy was able to make a couple of trips from Liverpool to visit, the second time with her daughter Kate and two of her grandkids, Emily and Sam. We had a blast, even if it was too windy to actually go for a cruise. I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to fight the wind and get off the mooring (it was gusting about 30 knots).

The weather over here isn’t really cooperating, it doesn’t much feel like summer most days. I often light a fire in the evening and turn on the furnace in the morning, it’s that cold. It also rains at what seems like every other day. I’m presently slowly cruising toward the end of the Llangollen, moving when it’s dry or at least not chucking it down. I’ll soon go back onto the Shropshire Union Canal itself. From there, I’m not sure…

Stay tuned!

 

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