Narrowboat Ezri – The Road To Romiley Part Two Or Traffic, Tunnels and Trains

So the rain stopped and the sun came out, I once again moved the coal box and wood planks into the front of Ezri so her weight would be right, I did want to add the wood box to but Dad said the three things would be fine.

Then I removed her front chain but kept the center rope tied, Dad held it as I undid the end chain. He took his place as we made the right turn on to the Peak canal heading down towards Marple.

Five minutes later we stopped but just because of the lift bridge, I tied Ezri up and waited, you see a lift bridge like a swing one everthing is on the worng side, the tie are always on the opposite side to the mechanism which moves the bridge. So single handed boats have a hard time, that why I have huge front rope.

But I am getting off the point, Dad did the bridge and I slow took Ezri though he dropped the bridge and got back on, the last time we headed down this way Ezri blow her engine so I was feeling little tense, but when we past under the frist high road bridges I begain to relax just a little but even watchful of a place to pull.

We had done about three high bridges when I started to notice something as we travled under Ezri slowed down I didn’t touch her throttle but she just did ever so slowly, she didn’t stop, but I didn’t like the feeling.

Dad sat at the front being look out and told me about the floating tree roots and I asked him to lift one or two low hanging branches out of the way, we had just done such a manoeuvre when another boat came towards us, Now can never remember if I am to move to the left or the right.

i slowed Ezri down, and pulled to right the other boat went to the left and we past each other nicely, it was the day boat from Portland and full of Kids on a trip, I moved Ezri back into the middle, I was still thinking about the weight so I asked my Dad if he could sit on the right hand side, which didn’t really make much of a difference but just felt it did.

We past under the M67 motorway a wide high tunnel just as came to the town of Hyde, and watched as the industrial landscape changed to open fields and then back small housing estates

We’ve done a lot tunnels like that one since leaving the small towns as we traveled down into Manchester and then up the Ashton, So a tunnel is just a tunnel right?

No not your life I knew there would be two more but how far way or how long they were I couldn’t remember, The first one was Woodley I had just time switch on Ezri’s light as we entered and slowed her engine.

As you enter Woodley tunnel you can’t see the end Ok you can but only just for the three minutes before enter it and then you have to duck down so you don’t hit your head, but don’t think you can just set you tiller and push tought, because the tunnel has a very small bend in it and a tow path on one side.

I am glad we took the top off the chimney as the we touched the roof more than once, and touced to side a few times as well, leaving tunnel was such a relief. i didn’t notice the shape bend as we made it though Woodley but Ezri stayed level and all was forgiven.

We were going nicely along still recoving from the tunnel when we saw another boat comming towards us so I moved to my right so hey could past but unlike to last boat he didn’t slow down just carried on comming, I was luckly the cannel was wide at that ponit.

By this time I had no idea were I was or the time of day, I had left all the toys (my phone and my cheep gopro) in my bag on my sofa bed I didn’t want to ask Dad to start messing about finding them, so we press on.

As we went along I noticed that the CRT had put new metal anchor barrier all the way a long bank so if I needed to stop I could. But I knew the trip was to get just outside Marple, I had that pass though my head as I noticed yet another boat, but this time the cannal was narrow so I had to almost stop to let them past.

Then just as I was about to pull away there was second boat this time with lighr on which frist I didn’t understand, I stayed were I was and let it pass, but as we made our way on it became clear why.

The trees had closed in and there was a mist around the entrance to Romiley tunnel even before we had reached Ezri’s light was back on and she was slowing down, unlike Woodley, Romiley has no tow path and is a little wider, but the head room is still too short and you can’t look to your right or left to see because all there is black..

I didn’t hit the side or even touch roof this so thar was good, but I srill didn’t have any idea were I choses our stopping place, I just knew if I go over Marple Aqueduct that I had gone to far, buta few mniutes later I heard to train go by knew to second I saw it on my left I was in the right place.

A row of trees later and we were there, I floated into the side a good boat lenght infornt of a lovely boat and within minutes had Ezri chained up and safe and as we did yet more traffic came towards us this time and working CRT boat.So in total we meet four boats comming towards us so it quet the littel traffic lane, 

I said before that I had work to following day and not having my work stuff on boat it would be much simpler if I came back  (his house) for the night went to work then back to Ezri the following day, As it was almost five in the afternoon, Dad had come by tram so that would a two hour trip back home.

I locked up Ezri did two more things then we headed to Marple railway station, a little bonus of the rain ride into Manchester was the fact you can look down to cannal and see the boat there.So I saw Ezri one last time as we headed in Manchester.

When we get there rush hour just about started so the mad sea of people all trying to get home and loud diesel engines was a bit shocking after the quiet leisurely pace of the canal trip. By the time we did reach ‘home’ it was half past seven at night.

Ps at no ponit did we see Bing Crosby, Bob Hope or Dorothy Lamour on this particular road but I don’t think there much of a rhyme to be had out Romiley .


Narrowboat Ezri – The Road To Romiley Part One Or Ezri and The Deluge.

I have done my new engine check list, worked out what weight I need to make Ezri feel level in the water, counted 20 and turned Ezri’s engine over.But still I can’t move because of all things rain, which for the last two days has been pouring down in huge sheets.

There have been the odd five minutes which I have been able to run my checks, place my coal and wood box outside, even have something to eat but the very minute that engine turns over down comes the rain I even took one of new chains off

Now I don’t mind getting a little wet, but the road to Romiley is a two hour trip and with the coal and wood box banging around in the front of Ezri I need someome make sure they stay level so I need crew, not only for that but the only lift at the start of Peak.

Not having Bing Crosby, Bob Hope or Dorothy Lamour to help on this particular road, I have my dad to help, but as I wrote before on the way here we were blined by the rain and both got the flu. So we both don’t want that again.

I am working Wednesday so Ezri has to be moved by then, I have alway tried to have a 24 hour window so if anything goes worng I could shut Ezri down in a safe place and still get to work even if ment being at my dad’s over night.

The thing is that moving Ezri on to the top of Peak for even 12 hour is a little unsafe, Andy said when he moved Ezri from there the other week one her pins had been taken up even with another boat near by also there are no ties on the Huddersfield narrow side of the junction. 

And after want I went thought to get off the Rochdale I am lothed to leave Ezri anywere that doesn’t have a place for mooring chain.

Narrowboat Ezri – Carry Weight

I have spent the last few days off Ezri because she was being refited after the engine rebuild, with new pipe work, new water cap and totally new exhaust pipe. And not only that but I found out she’s to light in the water.

That is to say the weight of her engine makes her prop and propeller drag in the water to much so she picks up all kinds of crap, which in turn put a huge strain on everything, Andy’s work is over Ezri runs, and runs well (she’s back at the Junction) but for me the rebuild is not over just yet.

I have make her heavy, now without removing my bed and ripping up Ezri’s floorboards to play with the ballast (if there is any) the simple solution is to make Ezri’s front the same weight as the back. 

How am I going to do this, by add three new bulk heads in the front well and with the addition of a few weights in the gas locker that should lift Ezri up and proved me with some more space for wood, coal and extra water.

Being away from Ezri for any length of time is an odd feeling, the best way I can explain it is like leaving half of yourself out there on towpath, so I want do most of this work when I am on her, so to move around the network I have do a little bit of a work around, placing my heavy coal and wood boxes, space oak wood planks and a lead weight in the well at the front.

So when I get down into Marple Junction, I can work her and still move around, from the Peak Foresr to the Macclesfield and even start bloging again and with a new bit of tech may even post a few videos on you tube.

Narrowboat Ezri – Lady Luck and Ezri.

Luck has played a huge part in my life with Ezri,

I was lucky to find her at the price I did, I was lucky to have amazing, wonderful people who helped me reach Leeds and teach me so much in those frist few days, 

I was lucky that day on the river when a heron show me the way and turings I had to make, I was lucky when the winter floods came that Ezri was save,

Lucky to get off the Rochdale canal with Ezri in one piece. And the last huge bit of luck was find out about Andy of G.I.D Marine Services who serviced Ezri just after I was able get to New Islngton.

And on to the Ashton, then to Portland Basin and on to Peak which is now Ezri’s home base 

At this point my luck did change not slowly but with a bang. 

We come to last week when Ezri became a black smoke cloud then blew her water intake cap, you see I have been scarried open the weed cover so I didn’t know about the build up of crap wrapping itself over the propeller which only found out later.

The plan was to move Ezri about 2 hour trip no locks just a swing bridge I have even got new morring chains, we did the bridge even had help and then.

Lady luck changed her mind smoke started to come up though deck plate the old exhaust pipe had give up join was letting, fumes into the engine bay.

We had stop and try and get back to the basin which meant turing Ezri around a matter of ten mintues lady luck still wanted to play so, ten mintues became half an hour and then crap on the propeller kicked in.

The black smoke became white for about ten second and Ezri blew the water cap then her engine stopped thankfuly Dad was on the towpath so we pulled Ezri back to the morring.

Our luck changed once more but this time back on our side Andy was working at Portland so I was able to explan what had gone worng and hand over Ezri’s keys

A few days ago he checked Ezri over and even had her running but her pipe work had melted and split  so needs replacing and even braved the weed cover and show me crap which was one scarry mess.

Lady luck has play around with me and Ezri a lot and so far we have got on very well but I bet she’s not given up just yet