Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019

Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019
On the Archduke's Path in Mallorca

Tuesday, 2 March 2021

Lockdown 2021, and it soon gets to March...

Well, we are into March and the floods of late January are almost a distant memory. We are still locked down, hence the absence of any particular outings on these pages, though when I go out and have to spend five minutes waiting to cross the A56, I do have a feeling that the current Lockdown is 'optional'.

So this is just a brief 'catch-up', documenting some comings and goings in February, much in the same way as Gayle has related hers in her blog.

The floods have continued to occupy some of the pathways in Wythenshawe Park. It took ages for this one to subside.

Across the road from us, some roofers busied themselves, but some of our carpets, bought last September, have still not been fitted, as carpet fitter Phil is in strict obeyance of lockdown rules.

On 1 February I enjoyed a stroll through the Carrington Estate, then past St Martin's in Ashton upon Mersey, and back home along the canal from Dane Road.

Then nothing much happened until 6 February, when Sue, rather belatedly, constructed a delicious 'Autumn Fruit Pie.

And my daughter suggested a birthday present...

All this time, I've been doing a (not)parkrun - 5km running or walking - every day since last summer. I'm up to number 252, compared with my actual parkrun tally that has been stuck on 246 for nearly a year. We still meet up with a group of parkrunners every Saturday morning, on Zoom. My jog on 9 February was on a crisp layer of 'flurry'.

Selwa and Amro kindly donated a massive TV for our kitchen, making our little 19" JVC TV redundant. It's a good TV, and works fine. Anybody want it?

On 11 February I enjoyed a circuit through de Quincey Park, along to Altrincham recycling centre, and then turning down the disused (but not removed) railway line that used to link Timperley with Glazebrook. The line goes under a new bridge near Waitrose, our local supermarket.

You have to leave the railway line before it reaches the A56, as the route has recently been fenced off there, but Lindsell Road and Hartington Road lead easily to the Bridgewater Canal, next to which this pleasant pond is a haven for wildlife.

12 February brought a wonderful sunrise, one of a number in recent weeks.

On 14 February, on a day of hard frost, we strolled along the towpath next to the frozen canal as far as the Trans Pennine Trail in Stretford. 

The TPT crosses the M60 motorway, and here at 2:30 in the afternoon there was evidence of Lockdown.

Beside the section of path near the River Mersey, someone has been busy constructing shelters.

Spring is nigh...

On 17 February I strolled along the towpath to Dunham Massey. Beyond the Bay Malton, the powers that be really do need to sort out this section of towpath to Lymm, or the idea of the 'Bridgewater Way' being a lovely route to be shared by cyclists and walkers will continue to be discredited.

I bumped into a few folk with a frightened dog (Rocko) and a frisby. It was great to see them for only the third time in a year. What a coincidence!

21 February found me on another circular walk. These horses near the recycling centre usually come to say hello.

The disused railway (the same as the one pictured earlier, the track is hidden to the left) leads to Waitrose, and the newish Stamford Brook Estate built on National Trust land.

There's a wilderness area where the housing estate ends, where today the desiccated heads of teasel flowers were nodding in the breeze.

By 22 February it was (mostly) warm enough to enjoy morning coffee and afternoon tea in the garden.

And by 23 February the crocuses sprang to attention as I jogged past on my 5 km of exercise.

24 February was a very dull day, but as it was Sue's birthday we enjoyed a 18 km stroll by the canal, and back along the TPT through the Carrington Estate, where Sue is pictured.

25 February - the small de Quincey Park throws up enticing images nearly every day I go through it.

And on 26 February, the same could be said for the Bridgewater Canal towpath in Sale.

27 February, and again I was unable to pass through de Quincey Park without flashing my camera. I was particularly pleased with the second of these images.

Closer to home (just around the corner) the crocuses in this part of Newton Park were mainly white and not quite as colourful, though the park, with its wide open space  and children's playgrounds, was heaving with people playing and picnicking with little apparent regard for Lockdown.

Yesterday, 1 March, saw me unable to resist going for my longest bike ride, about 30 miles, since last August. The bike (Stumpy) had its first outing since last October, and needed a good hose down afterwards. I went on the 'Moore Lane' circuit, via Heatley and Grappenhall.

The route crosses the Bridgewater Canal at Moore, where I stopped for a half-way rest, flask of tea, and banana - in that order. Here are the views both ways from the bridge. There's an annoying 'No Cycling' sign that others were ignoring. This is part of the Bridgewater Way, mentioned above, which should be a shared path.

Finally, I noticed, a few weeks ago, a group of people planting trees in the meadows by Hartington Road between the A56 and the canal, near home. This is what the area looks like today. Can you spot the trees? What will happen in the future?


GeoffC said...

Good selection of photos there, though I've never seen the western section of the BW canal path as muddy as that.

A queston about the rail line: we've investigated it from Brookheys Farm in the west as far east as just beyond Waitrose. We know there is an exit directly to Dairyhouse Lane just before Waitrose and an exit to Sinderland Road by the primary school just after. Since you can't exit at the A56, how far eastwards can you walk the track and find an exit?.

Phreerunner said...

Geoff, it's a shame they have blocked off the old railway line where it goes over the A56, as you used to be able to walk along it as far as the canal. Now you continue past Waitrose (before which there's a left turn opposite the one to Dairyhouse Lane, which takes you into the 'wilderness' area at the end of the Stamford Brook estate, and a nice route to de Quincey park) and you soon cross a path that runs from Turnbull Road to Sinderland Road - past the school. Continuing along the railway line, you come to another path leading from a ginnel on the left from Turnbull Road. Here you turn right down a ginnel that brings you on to Lindsell Road. Walk down that road to the A56, turn right, cross the road, and turn first left down Hartington Road, past some new houses on the left. At the end of the road, take the left bank of the Recreation Ground to reach the canal by a choice of paths, with the new 'plantation' on your right and the pond to your left or right, depending on which route you take.
I hope that helps.

Sir Hugh said...

It is easy to take our own surroundings for granted especially when we have lived there for a long time but this is a splendid selection of photos. As I said in a recent post I also am restricted to my own area with Lockdown and have taken to looking at things much more closely and unearthing things I have missed over the last twenty years.

Phreerunner said...

Yes Conrad, and I've enjoyed following your own local rambles...

GeoffC said...

FYI: for interest we investigated today: we followed the track eastwards to the A56, and at the end right by the bridge, there is an exit on the left down an earthy bank to a gap in the fence onto the pavement.
In the last section the track becomes a bit more scrappy and overgrown but presents no problems.

Phreerunner said...

That's interesting, Geoff, you've avoided the need to walk down Lindsell Road. But at the expense of vegetation that will soon be like a jungle!
We approached the A56 bridge from the other side, and we decided to return to the next bridge where you can get back onto the railway for a short section to the canal.