We agreed with Liz and Robert on NB Blue Point that we would set off at 9.00 to travel together through the Blackburn Locks. It has been such a luxury to have them to travel along with and the chore of travelling up deep and quite fierce locks has seemed relatively easy. It was with regret that we left our beautiful mooring at Withnell Fold, but it seems that we may have to return that way as passage through the Rochdale is being severely restricted and may cease altogether.
Both boats were in need of diesel so we took it in turn to back into the jetty at Canal Boat Cruises at Riley Green, where we received very friendly and cheery service. We were nearly running on empty and needed to take on 207 litres. We realised that we had not filled up since we were on the Soar.
On we went to Blackburn and through the locks. We had thought about staying at Nova Scotia Wharf but also wanted to go through the remaining locks with Blue Point. When we reached the wharf after the second of the six locks it was a very small area and had no appeal to us. As we went on through the locks there was a lot of rubbish and in particular there seemed to be a lot of metal rubbish. Three fire extinguishers and a panel from a car for example. I felt very grateful to get through without mishap. There is a big Asda store just after the locks and we both pulled in to do some shopping but we did leave the boats with some trepidation. It’s a shame to say as we have met some very friendly people here, such as the guy on the checkout at Asda, but the canal seems not a place to linger in Blackburn. We rushed the shopping, almost a trolley dash, and got back as fast as possible. Liz and Robert were there first and had been reluctant to leave until we were back at the boat. We waved goodbye to them again as they thought they would go much further than us this afternoon.
We really didn’t even feel like stopping at the mooring long enough to eat lunch so we went on taking turns to eat. We had been recommended a mooring just after Rishton, and as we passed through Rishton itself we were feeling very sceptical as the canal was very rubbish laden and the surroundings were somewhat desolate. When we reached the recommended spot just before the aquaduct over the M65 we found it to be very scenic with widereaching views over the valley, and we also found Blue Point mooring up. We were just in time to get settled inside before the rain.
Today we did 12.03 Miles and 6 Locks
Statistics so far:-
2546.08 Miles, 1500 Locks, 134 Swing Bridges, 90 Lift Bridges, 43 Tunnels