River Mersey Estuary Paddle by Robin Emley

I wasn’t able to join Kris’s Mersey trip last month so decided to do my own on Easter Day. Having checked with Mersey VTS before starting to cross the channel, an incoming vessel bound for Gladston Dock raised an objection so I had to return to the East side.  With a Spring Tide in full flow, staying put wasn’t going to be easy but there was a convenient eddy just by the big red cranes.  Eventually I made it across to the Wirral side but it was a frustating 15 minutes with all that free energy being wasted.
My target was the cafe at Eastham Ferry but there was no easy exit there so I continued to Eastham Lock where the Ship Canal starts.  The entrance lock is huge, I’ve never seen anything like it.  Lunch was taken on some stepped banking nearby.
With the tide having turned, it was a quick ride home.  I followed the Eastham markers first then crossed to the Garston side for a different perpective on our familiar stamping ground.  Drifting along with the tide is a great way to see Liverpool seafront close up.
Mersey VTS was working well; it was reassuring to hear my presence being announced to any relevant traffic. On returning to Blundellsands, the shoreline had turned to gooey silt. Fine for the birds but it was a messy process for me to gain firm ground.  Crosby Lifeguards were patrolling nearby so I called them for guidance as to the best route up the beach.
As Kris said, this estuary needs to be paddled more 🙂