Llangollen October 2019

Another successful weekend in Llangollen for WKCC kindly organised by Claire again.
The weekend started early on the Friday for some with a meet up for breakfast on the A5 so we could check river levels and decide as a group where we wanted to go based on various river apps. The consensus (with a bit of persuasion for some) was to paddle the Vyrnwy from the dam down to Pont Llogel. This is a really nice grade 2, 2+ with a 3/3+ section which you can portage. The level was good and involves careful navigation around many low hanging trees to keep you on your toes.
When we got to the longer tricky section we were forced to portage as the river right route was blocked by a tree and the far side of the island could not be inspected and no cover could be put in place so sensible option was chosen.
We continued onto the end, retrieved the ferry cars and made our way up to the Hostel ready for a night out and a meal in a local hostelry.
Back to the hostel to make plans for Saturday.
Breakfast crew up at 6:45 to make a full cooked breakfast for all.
We split into a few groups for the day. A few non-paddlers, a Dee trip from Glyndyfrdwy to Horseshoe and onto canal, a grade 4 gorge trip and a medium trip on the Conwy from the A5 road bridge.
A great time was had by all and only a couple of swims on the day.
All back to LLangollen for a few beers etc and then the highlight our communal meal. A huge selection of mains, rice, potatoes, poppadum’s, puddings all made by people in the club.
Sunday was departure day for some but a majority went for a traditional easy paddle along the Llangollen canal crossing the mighty Pontcycyllte aqueduct and through Chirk tunnel.
Another great weekend.
Thanks to all organisers, cooks, coaches and leaders and to all that came along.

WKCC and UWCKC Lakes Weekend

Another great joint club weekend in the Lake District for WKCC and UWCKC (Upton Warren Canoe and Kayaking Club) to follow on from the Brecon weekend last week.
Thanks to Emma J we had a great location at Lowick School Bunkhouse, a family run business who also run outdoor activities.
For Friday nearly all rivers were scrape or empty, so a leisurely time was had by those who travelled early. We all went to a local pub for an evening meal kindly organised by Amanda
On Saturday we split into two groups. Sue T, Steve C, Kev D and Jack H went off to Windemere for a spot of sailing. Conditions were good but gusty and they all managed to rig up various sails. A few minor incidents on the day including a gust capsizing Sue T followed by a great self-righting rescue using all those skills learnt at symposiums and then he who shall not be mentioned leaving his car keys at the start resulting in a long taxi jou

rney to retrieve them.
The rest of us (Emma J, Graham, Dave J, Matt W, Paul (Brian) A, Rita, Amanda D, Lillie and Bobby) went and did a short paddle on the lower part of the Duddon to do a bit of moving water practice. Some great progress was made which would prove to be very useful for Sunday. A small swim for both Lillie and Bobby who were both pushing hard but they both carried on afterwards.
By this time the rain had set in so things were looking good for Sunday so it was off to the bunkhouse where Rita made a stew, Emma made a Polish dish with chorizo and Amanda made a fish pie so we all ate well. This was followed by more of Amanda’s cakes.
By Saturday evening Rainchasers was showing rivers running everywhere so we knew we would have choices but the plan was to do a trip to include the whole group.
Sunday we chose the Crake. It was very close to the bunkhouse and runs out of Coniston Water ending at Spark Bridge. All paddled except Sue who had other plans and Paul and Kev who were poorly.
The river was described as grade 2/3 with the main feature Bobbin Mill Rapid just before the get out.
Lillie paddled canoe with Rita and Bobby with Jack. Steve also canoes with the rest in kayaks. We started with around 2km on Coniston before entering the river which started very slow but lots of weaving between low trees which resulted in a swim for Amanda and a roll for Matt when he caught his paddle. There were plenty of little rapids and surf waves before we soon came to a short grade 3 section. Best plan here was to get Bobby and Lillie to walk this section. Emma, Matt and me positioned ourselves in various eddies and Dave

lead Amada down successfully. I then got the canoeists to take a look and advise on lines including how to avoid the folded pinned old town canoe half way down (just to help their confidence). Steve went first and was going well until he hit a small rock head on resulting in him sliding forward straight through his carrying thwart snapping it and ending up on the front air bag. This also made his kneeling thwart come loose. He quickly scrambled back to the middle and managed to get down the rest cleanly. A few repairs with duct tape and straps but the rigidity back in to the boat 😊. Rita came down next clipped a rock and was heading towards the pinned canoe but smartly went right down a different shoot avoiding main trouble into a tight eddie. After a few manoeuvres carried on down cleanly. Jack was last to come down and had the cleanest run with just one set of corrections for the last drop.
Onwards with more pleasant small rapids and waves to play on. Something for everyone until we reached what should have been an easy 2/3 section was it not for low tree branches and a small tree blocking one channel. This left us one slightly rocky channel to go down which unfortunately caught Rita and Lillie who pinned and capsized and had a short swim. Both smiling we soon carried on.
The river builds up towards the end with the speed slowly picking up and becoming more continuous until we reached Bobbin Mill.
This would normally be regarded as a decent grade 3 but today there was a massive uprooted tree on one corner. I started first and signalled upstream for everyone to stop and wait. When I reached the bottom my first thought was to find a way back to top to take Lillie and Bobby out and give the canoeists an option to get out as it was full of boulders and swim and pin opportunities with some decent stopper waves. Somehow the Chinese whispers of the signals got lost as they were passed up the line resulting in everyone coming down. To my relief and surprise all was good. Everyone was down and buzzing after running it.
Still raining we packed up and set off home joining all the slow Sunday traffic on the M6.
A great weekend and a nice mix of people. Well done to all.

Llangollen 2016

After a great week in Scotland we followed this up with another great week in Llangollen kindly arranged by Claire.
At the time water was hard to find but we made the most of it.
Mel took a group to Llyn  Tegid on Saturday and I took a group on the Dee from Glyndyfrdwyr down through to below Town Falls.
On Sunday we had a combined group on the Dee from Horseshoe to below Town Falls.

Mel took plenty of photos which are in the Gallery or can be viewed below.

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Dart Weekend March 2015

All Dart weekend reports will appear here.

First one from Sue T with a summary of Saturday nights game :-

After dinner on Saturday night we played a game for which everyone present had previously answered some questions to create a secret profile of little known facts about themselves. Everyone then had to guess whom each profile belonged to. Many interesting facts emerged; some of which are summarised below. What a weird and wonderful selection of members the club has! Continue reading “Dart Weekend March 2015”

Brecon 2014 – Home Page – First reports

Please add all Brecon 2014 trip reports and articles to this post so we can keep them all together . Here is some background information.
Trip reports can be posted by Graham, Clive or Adam and some other committee members.

Brecon Weekend Paddling Info. 3* candidates and anyone either coaching or moving towards coaching then it’s worth keeping a log of your river trips. This be a simple spreadsheet list.
Here is some info from the weekend to get you started.
Friday – Tallybont-on-Usk to Cyffredyn Lane(Llangyndir). 4.7 miles, river level low/medium. Grade 2 /3+, number in group 6.

Saturday – Sennybridge to Aberbran Bridge 5.2 miles, river level low. Grade 2 /3, number in group a) 18, group b) 3* juniors 10
Extra bit Aberbran to Brecon, low, grade 2, 4 miles.

Sunday – Tallybont-on-Usk to Cyffredyn Lane(Llangyndir). 4.7 miles, river level low. Grade 2 /3+, number in group 14

Brecon Weekend: Friday, 24 October ’14

Attendees: Graham, Kev, Tim, Rita, Pauline & Sue T
Got to the ‘put in’ at 9:30 half an hour early, expecting to be first there but no in fact last there, these folks are keen! Graham had already arrived an hour earlier to recon the ‘get out’.
Once we were on the water Graham had us practicing reverse paddling and reverse ferry gliding, by the end of the trip I had improved a great deal in this area.  The only grade 3+ rapid on the trip was Mill Falls after inspection myself, Tim, Rita & Graham decided we were going to ‘tame the beast’ however once I dropped in it was just a case of rock avoidance, all that careful planning hey!
We all safely negotiated ‘death falls’ Rita even put in an exhibition of side surfing half way down!  It was a good stretch of bouncy rapids all the way down to the ‘get out’.
Real fun trip, thanks to Graham for some excellent coaching.
Brecon Weekend  – Sunday 26th  October
We paddled from Tallybont-on-Usk to Cyffredyn Lane (Llangyndir) it was around 4.7 miles. Because the river level was low, around 0.36, it was more technical than just a mad rush of water; this was by far my favourite trip I have done so far. Especially the feature Mill Falls, this was at the perfect level to practice our break ins/outs (which Adam had us doing the whole way down the river).It was a clear crisp day perfect for paddling, the water wasn’t that challenging thanks to Adams work the day before on eddying in and out and ferry gliding, the water was grade 2,3+.
Finally thank you to the 14 who paddled it and made it an extremely enjoyable and exciting day.

Brecon Weekend  – Sunday 26th  October view 2
It was another fine morning when 14 of us arrived at Tallybont-on-Usk (all except Adam who got lost) for this grade 2/3 paddle.
The river level had dropped from Friday (when some of us did the same stretch before) which made the first flat section a bit of a slog although it was a useful warm-up.
Once we got to the first drop the river changes character and becomes more challenging with Mill falls being the best section with some good paddling especially from the juniors.
There were some more rapids and drops before the get out and we used these to practice eddying in and out in the fast moving water as well as surfing some waves, all great fun.
This paddle together with the rest of the weekend paddles have given me more confidence to try some more challenging sections of water. This is a nice stretch of river which I would love to paddle again perhaps at a higher water level.
A great end to an excellent weekend of paddling, many thanks to everyone who made it possible.
Tim Barnes.


Dad picked me from school on Friday , we headed off to Brecon with a car full of food( thanks Mum! ) and paddling gear . It only took us 1 1/2 hrs to get there ,we settled in waiting for the other club members to arrive. As the evening went on ,the adults started  to talk about the next days paddle (down the no way out cannon or  The extreme paddle weir according to fitz ). We all drifted of to bed about 11.30. the night passed by in a flash. We were woken up by the smell off cooked bacon, the breakfast was delicious. We got kitted up  did the ferry to Senny Bridge and unloaded the boats. the weather was very kind to,use with the sun appearing.The adults soon got on the water, did a warm up then disappeared down the river  of adventure. !! Adam and Emma Bullen were our coaches for the trip. Adam explained what alpine descent was about (going down the river eddy hoping from either side off the river in a controlled manner ).We got on the water had a warm up ferry guiding, then started down the river with Adam and Emma leading the way. As we approached the weirs we followed Adam down all safely We all started to enjoy the river and the sunshine .We caught the adults up at  horeshoe  falls which was the biggest drop on the trip, we all shot the weir with no problems then stopped for lunch .We continued down the river  which was supposed to be a 5mile trip but felt more like 10 miles with all the eddy hoping. After a long trip we came to the end off the trip  most got off to change and get back to the bunkhouse ,Sue C.  Ian, Tim Harris, Max, Jonah, Nat and myself decided to paddle on further to Brecon .We paddled under the bridge stopped to play in the wave which I got slightly wrong!  I went for the roll in the stopper ,which partially failed.I  went for roll and failed again and lost my paddle.Not giving up I successfully undertook my  3rd hand roll this time, I came away from the stopper quite relieved . Afterwards  Sue got me out on to the bank (to mother me giving me some chocolate and a drink ) After that we had a gentle paddle down the river to the car park at Brecon  where Roy met us.By this time we were all very tired and hungry . When we got back to the bunkhouse we had a very nice evening meal ,by the time we went to bed I was very tired and achey. Dad and I didn’t paddle on Sunday because I woke up with a very stiff shoulder and decided not to push my luck. It was a great weekend. So Many super memories. Can’t wait to do it again. Written by   Oliver Moore

‘Rita, Sue and Simon Too’ Thursday 19th June, 2014

Simon Cosson, Sue Tadman and Rita O’Reilly paddled from Ham Bridge to Knightwick.

Our usual access was overgrown with stingers and other nasty plants so we slid the boats down a steep, newly-made access that, most likely, was used with higher river levels.  Using a throw rope around a tree, we lowered ourselves onto a gravelly bank.  Continue reading “‘Rita, Sue and Simon Too’ Thursday 19th June, 2014”

Paddle Sunday 29th – Middle Severn

Paddle Sunday 29th, meet 10am at The Boat Inn, 209 Ferry Road, Jackfield, Ironbridge Gorge, Telford TF8 7LS, Shropshire.
Please contact Caroline 07909537760 if interested.
This is a great trip through Ironbridge suitable for kayaks or Open Boats. Jackfield can be portaged if needed.