Anyone paddled the Wye?

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Bearbonesnorm
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Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Bearbonesnorm » Sun Dec 06, 2020 9:43 pm

I'm playing with ideas for next year and wondered about rafting down the Wye and riding back. Anyone paddled it, is it nice?
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darbeze
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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by darbeze » Sun Dec 06, 2020 10:13 pm

Quite a serene gentle affair from what I remember. No gnarly whitewater to speak of...

Si

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Bearbonesnorm
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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Bearbonesnorm » Sun Dec 06, 2020 10:16 pm

That's what I was hoping Si :wink:
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Alec
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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Alec » Sun Dec 06, 2020 10:34 pm

Ive not paddled it but its on the hit list. There is a pretty comprehensive guidebook to it called, the river wye canoe and kayak guide by mark rainsley, i think you have to go a fair way down from yours to get to the touring/non ww sections

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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Cheddar Man » Sun Dec 06, 2020 10:35 pm

I have paddled Symonds Yat to Redbrook a few times, it's a really pleasant day out, but may be a long ride back. In a car it is a complex game of leave one here, go back there, paddle, get back in, drive back there! Paddle to Redbrook, enjoy the pub overlooking the river, sleep out, ride back.

If you have a packraft with a bike on it, the only bumpy bit is not far after Symonds Yat, the rest is just easy and flat.

Lovely weekend.

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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by pistonbroke » Sun Dec 06, 2020 10:46 pm

I paddled from Builth to Erwood on a trip from college 40 years ago. It was February and freezing, I recall there being a couple of minor rapids but generally quite straightforward, good job as it wasn't swimming weather.

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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Hamish » Sun Dec 06, 2020 10:48 pm

I have paddled from Glasbury to Monmouth - in a kayak and in a canoe. I haven't paddled it in a raft. It's a very nice river touring trip. S. Yat is a bit bumpy and I recon I'd need to make sure my bike was well tied down and balanced before doing the drop! I may be being cautious, but I think for I'd watch the water level to get it right for a perfect rafting trip. Not summer dry low flow; slow and some grounding on shoal and not in spate with bikes getting tangled in trees!

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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Robster » Sun Dec 06, 2020 11:12 pm

https://www.canoewales.com/touring-rivers-1

Hi Stu, It all depends on the water levels.
There’s a recent book by Pesda Press and before that a waterproof ring bound guide.
The main features are Monington falls (just a rapid) and Symonds Yat rapid.
From a paddling point of view, watch out for the flow taking you into the outside of the bend and potentially into trees.

Not sure about the wild camping opportunities as it’s a busy place.

Other than that, it’s lovely and should be a nice ride home!

Have a fantastic trip. Cheers Rob

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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Jurassic » Mon Dec 07, 2020 12:23 am

I paddled some sections of it in a kayak (ancient glassfibre slalom boat) when I was a kid. My dad was into paddling and had done it before and we did some of the bits he'd enjoyed the most. We did Symond's Yat and portaged back up for another go (because it was fun). My memories are a bit vague but it can't have been very difficult if I managed it back then. Packrafts draw a lot less than canoes or kayaks (even loaded) so you'd probably be able to do it in conditions that would be far too scrapey in a hardshell boat. I've paddled stuff in my raft that would have been impossible in my canoe for example the river Ba with not very much water in (it while doing a Rannoch Moor traverse).

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Dave Barter
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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Dave Barter » Mon Dec 07, 2020 9:20 am

I did a 15 mile trip using bike and sea kayak. I left kayak in bushes drove down river then cycled back and paddled to van retrieving bike later. I remember a decent flow on the water and a few sections of mild rapids. It was fine in my kayak but I’d probably not attempt it with a bike strapped on. Having said that there were some calmer sections that would have been ok.
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psling
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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by psling » Mon Dec 07, 2020 10:22 am

As Robster says, it all depends on water levels.
I've paddled most of the river on various occasions between Glasbury and Chepstow and it's all pretty straight-forward at the right water levels. The rapids below Symonds Yat have been rebuilt and are low grade. Above Builth I should imagine it's more 'interesting' and between Builth and Glasbury you'll need to pick your line. Below Brockweir (not a weir!) the river is tidal.

It will take you a long time! Several days. On a packraft I should imagine 5 - 6 days Builth to Chepstow plus a couple of days above Builth. Wave as you go past my office (between Ross and Kerne Bridge) :-bd
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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Bearbonesnorm » Tue Dec 08, 2020 9:18 am

Thanks all. Sounds like it might be a goer then.

I am beginning to wonder if I might have more fun not taking the bike and making it a raft / train type affair but we'll see in the New Year. :-bd
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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Piemonster » Tue Dec 08, 2020 9:34 am

Bearbonesnorm wrote:
Sun Dec 06, 2020 9:43 pm
I'm playing with ideas for next year and wondered about rafting down the Wye and riding back. Anyone paddled it, is it nice?
Not done it, but planning too, originally next year but I’ve Adhesive Capsulitis (left shoulder) so have shelved the idea for a while. Lovely river going by friends who have padded it. Sedate but consistently pleasant.

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Re: Anyone paddled the Wye?

Post by Chew » Tue Dec 08, 2020 11:05 am

Bearbonesnorm wrote:
Tue Dec 08, 2020 9:18 am
I am beginning to wonder if I might have more fun not taking the bike and making it a raft / train type affair but we'll see in the New Year. :-bd
From when we went to Scotland this year, it was much more enjoyable paddling without any weight on the boat.

Handled a lot better and was more fun rather than having to play it safe.

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