Symonds Yat Rapids Closed.

Inland paddling
JIM HEPPY
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Symonds Yat Rapids Closed.

Post by JIM HEPPY » Wed Sep 24, 2008 2:52 pm

After many years, work has finaly started at the rapids. The walls are being made perminante using massive block stone anchored to the river bed.

The route down is not navigable. It has been closed by the navigation authority, The Environment Agency. There are signs on the left on where to egress and a trolly if you cant carry your boat to the access. Works must be finished by the 15th of october.

Cheers Jim

TonyM
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Post by TonyM » Wed Sep 24, 2008 11:51 pm

Can anyone pos some pics/vid of this please?
Thanks
Tony

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the_usual
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Post by the_usual » Thu Sep 25, 2008 12:02 am

When I went down that way last Friday, they'd literally built a path down the river left using rubble and rocks. This was so the heavy machinery could access it. At the time there was one digger at the bottom of the path scraping rocks up.

Didn't look as if they'd made much constructive progress, as river right was untouched and river left filled in. But hey, I'm not construction expert, I'm sure it will sort itself out.

Didn't get a picture though I'm afraid.

Ashley_Ainsworth
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Post by Ashley_Ainsworth » Thu Sep 25, 2008 8:44 am

Not sure there's much to see yet except a digger in the water, but I'll take some pics this evening for you

Ash

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Big G
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yat

Post by Big G » Thu Sep 25, 2008 12:19 pm

would be good to see some pics, will be interesting to see what they create, cant face the traffic at Over so wnt be makin the trip.

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Performance Kayaks
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Post by Performance Kayaks » Thu Sep 25, 2008 12:31 pm

This is some information that I received about Symonds Yat Rapids. If you're not sure what's going on, have a look at http://www.yatrapids.co.uk/inriver.html

The Contractor for the "in river" work at Symonds Yat has started work to-day Monday September 1st.

The temporary closure of the Wye navigation and of the rapids is therefore NOW IN FORCE and will remain in force until at the latest October 15th.

Paddlers and all other river users MUST ASSUME that there is no passage along this part of the river Wye and MUST pull out above the rapids and portage down the LEFT (east) BANK. This is a 300m portage which is shared with both a footpath and a cycleway diversion.

Trolleys should be available for heavier craft.

This procedure MUST be followed in reverse for any upstream progressing navigators.

There will be signs and local instructions on a white board at the steps to the river directly in front of the ROYAL LODGE HOTEL, Symonds Yat East and at the downstream end of the works.

The programme for the Week commencing the September 1st is expect to be.


The contractor will be mobilising himself into the site.

A temporary ramp to get the machines in and out of the river will be built.

The "In river" 5 ton Rocks will be delivered to site.

SWIMMERS and DIVERS will be in the river carrying out Pearl Mussel and other "In river" environmental surveys.

The week beginning the 8th. It is expected that rocks will be temporarily placed along the banks ready for placing.

September 9th. The Symonds Yat Preservation Group will meet at 7.30pm in the Royal Lodge Hotel to review progress.

The exact rate of progress of the work is river level dependent. If all goes well it might just be possible that a minute to minute local decision to open up the rapids to passage might be made at any time during the contract but this must be assumed to be unlikely.

IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT PADDLERS AND ALL NAVIGATORS OBEY ALL SIGNS AND LOCAL INSTRUCTIONS.

BY ENTERING THE SITE UNAUTHORISED, THERE IS A GRAVE DANGER OF INJURY NOT JUST TO THEMSELVES BUT ALSO TO CONTRACTORS STAFF AND OTHER OPERATIVES. ROCKS, LARGE CONTRACTING MACHINERY, CRANES, DUMPERS, PUMPS AND OTHER EQUIPMENT WILL BE WORKING FROM TIME TO TIME IN THE RIVER AND ON IT'S BANKS.

JUST BECAUSE IT LOOKS AS IF WORK IS NOT GOING ON, DOES NOT MEAN TO SAY THAT IT IS NOT.

JIM HEPPY
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Post by JIM HEPPY » Thu Sep 25, 2008 3:12 pm

Thanks for the info from PK Kayaks. Here is a bit more on people ignoring the closure.

'The closure which has run from Sept 1st is being disregarded by some paddlers. This may have been due to high river levels lulling them into believing that work was not taking place and so ignoring the Navigation closed notices.

The work window closes on October 15th so the contractors will be working flatout to get the job done in the time available.
They will have at least two 26t 360 machines, and a tracked dumper in the river for the next 3 weeks. These machines are very large, their tracks are almost 2m high and they cannot get out of the way of paddlers attempting to transit the site to avoid a portage.'


I will be peddling past there on saturday so will take some picture but i have no idea how to get them on here! thanks Jim.

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Francis
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Symonds Yat Rapids - Photographs!

Post by Francis » Fri Sep 26, 2008 8:51 am

I am the Secretary of the Symonds Yat Rapids Preservation Group and would like to echo the message above about some paddlers ignoring the navigation closure and how very dangerous this is at the moment while we have got heavy machinery, divers & swimmers in the river trying to complete the work before our 15th October deadline.

Please see my post in the Paddling Conditions Forum for more details or alternative look at our website (see the link in my profile) which also includes photographs of the work in progress.
Secretary of the Symonds Yat Rapids Preservation Group
and member of Cheltenham Canoe Club

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morsey
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Post by morsey » Fri Sep 26, 2008 12:12 pm

http://www.yatrapids.co.uk/index.html
Image

Almost as good as diggerland!

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Adrian Cooper
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Post by Adrian Cooper » Fri Sep 26, 2008 12:50 pm

Glad to see the works progressing well but I am intrigued by some of the language used on the website. This item seemed to be somewhat ambiguous:
BCU Commitment to Symonds Yat Rapids

The BCU has no plans and is actively planning and budgeting for informal recreational paddling to remain free for both BCU and non BCU members alike at Symonds Yat Rapids. This does not however include for formal "occupation" of the site, for example for Coaching, Competition, Commerical Events or similar and possibly even angling...

ali
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Post by ali » Fri Sep 26, 2008 7:10 pm

Basically, if you are a paddler who has gone along and paddled on the rapids, through the rapids played on them etc you won't ever be asked to pay for that privalage.

Obvioulsy if you choose to launch at the centre upriver there is a launch fee of £1 for the steps they've built and a car parking fee.

If a club wants to use the rapids for an event e.g holding a ranking slalom event then because other paddlers can't just paddle down the course as they wish a charge will be made to hire the rapids.

Ali

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Francis
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Post by Francis » Fri Sep 26, 2008 8:10 pm

Can I echo what Ali has said, we have fought hard for the principle that the use of the rapids should be free to everyone BCU and non BCU alike. However I don't think it is unreasonable that if the rapids are for instance hired by a club to run slalom or a coach charges people for course they are holding on it that the Yat asks for some income from it.

Even though the work has now started we do very much still need to raise more money and donations can be made using paypal via the website on my profile and referred to elsewhere in this thread. Because of the floods at the beginning of September when the Wye was running 15 feet higher than normal (higher than anyone can remember) we have had to hire a 2nd digger for £5,000 to ensure we get the work finished in the window the Environment Agency have allowed us or otherwise wait until the same time next year to finish. Also unfortunately like it or not there will be some maintenance & running costs going forward that will somehow have to be paid for.

We are just paddlers like yourselves who have spent the last 12 years raising a very large amount of money to firstly buy the rapids from the previous owners to prevent them potentially being dredged for fishing. Then spent years obtaining the constantly changing planning permission & land drainage consents required for the work you now see going ahead and raising a further very large sum of money to the pay for it.

...and finally if anyone has a spare couple of hours this weekend we could do with some help!

I was down at the rapids this afternoon & the contractors have nearly finished on one side of the rapids (which looks terrific, I'll try to post some newer photos on the website a bit later) and are about to cross over to the island to start on the other. The contractors are very worried that they are again going to have paddlers doing bandit runs whilst they are working this weekend & would like volunteers to sit at the top of the rapids to try & stop them. You can not see them working when at the top of the rapids and a collision with their equipment on the way down could be fatal.

The weather looks good so if you can make up some sandwiches & a flask and take along a folding chair & whistle for a couple of hours it would be much appreciated. Paul Howells of Wyedean Canoe Centre is co-ordinating the effort so if you have got some time to spare please call his shop on 01600 890129.
Secretary of the Symonds Yat Rapids Preservation Group
and member of Cheltenham Canoe Club

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janet brown
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Post by janet brown » Fri Sep 26, 2008 9:23 pm

If the rapids are being hired for eg a slalom competition, will there be some method of alerting paddlers to the fact that they will be closed for other use?
Just thinking of avoiding wasted journeys, as has happened to our club when going to the Nene before now. Thats a 3 hour drive for us, Symonds Yat even further.

Janet

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Francis
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Post by Francis » Sat Sep 27, 2008 2:03 pm

We haven't worked out all the details yet but we will almost certainly be advertising when events are on at the rapids via our website at www.yatrapids.co.uk (which I have just updated with more photos & a short video).

We are currently just starting to plan the launch event for sometime in the spring which will almost certainly be a slalom of some sort. It was condition of our funding from the CCDP that we had a well publicised launch event.
Secretary of the Symonds Yat Rapids Preservation Group
and member of Cheltenham Canoe Club

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janet brown
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Post by janet brown » Sat Sep 27, 2008 5:24 pm

Thanks for that: reassuring to know you'll be using the website as thats the easiest way to get information from home!

Janet

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Adrian Cooper
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Post by Adrian Cooper » Sat Sep 27, 2008 9:56 pm

ali wrote: If a club wants to use the rapids for an event e.g holding a ranking slalom event then because other paddlers can't just paddle down the course as they wish a charge will be made to hire the rapids.
Ali / Francis, thanks for the clarification, I was struggling to understand the quoted paragraph. Interesting to note the possibility of charging for an event given that the river is a public navigation. I can understand the event holders being charged but I don't see that they would be able prevent Joe Public from passing through.

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wezzzy
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Post by wezzzy » Mon Sep 29, 2008 3:44 am

I was also thinking about people running the rapids, what will the canoe hire companies think about having to tell thier customers to portage around the rapids because there is an event on?
Also, will this be in conflict with the navigation rights on the Wye?

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Post by furby » Mon Sep 29, 2008 1:10 pm

I know next to nothing about what is happening at the rapids, looking at the website didnt really help either.

Could somebody breifly explain whats is happening and why?

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Slaphappy
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Post by Slaphappy » Mon Sep 29, 2008 2:47 pm

Could somebody breifly explain whats is happening and why?
I am sure that someone else can help you more but in my book it is like this.

25 odd years ago the rapids were exactly that, rapids, now due to severe bank erosion and erosion of the groynes there are no real rapids left, so the bcu and others bought the rapids, got some locals on board and now they are putting them back to their former glory.

Big round of applause for all involved it is a momentus acheivement and testiment to years of dedication.

An excellent plan as the wye is beautiful and probably the best place in the UK for begginers intro to moving water and where I learnt to paddle a very very long time ago ;-)

15 feet higher than normal (higher than anyone can remember)


1978/9 ish when the river flooded to the door of the old court hotel (whitchurch), I remember because that was the first time in a kayak at the grand age of 5 in my nans flooded garden ;-)

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Adrian Cooper
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Post by Adrian Cooper » Mon Sep 29, 2008 3:01 pm

furby wrote:I know next to nothing about what is happening at the rapids, looking at the website didnt really help either.

Could somebody breifly explain whats is happening and why?
If you know the rapids then you should understand a simple explanation. The existing groynes have deteriorated over the years and the previous owner was disinclined to allow local paddlers to rebuild them. They frequently get damaged or washed away by flood water. The current works aim to renew the groynes with particularly large rocks which, hopefully, will stay put.

If you check the website there are a number of plans and sections of the groynes and definitly one general arrangement plan which indicates the new configuration.


(edited for rubbish typing)
Last edited by Adrian Cooper on Mon Sep 29, 2008 8:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

JohnK
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Post by JohnK » Mon Sep 29, 2008 7:06 pm

wezzzy wrote:I was also thinking about people running the rapids, what will the canoe hire companies think about having to tell thier customers to portage around the rapids because there is an event on?
Also, will this be in conflict with the navigation rights on the Wye?
At Ironbridge slalom on the Severn (not been held for the last 2 years) the event stops briefly while touring groups paddle through, or more likely, hit the first rock and swim.

I was a member of Gloucester Canoe Club in the 70's when it ran Symonds Yat slalom. If I remember correctly it was run in the Spring so there was less traffic. You're not going to be able to stop paddlers passing through even if you wanted to.

Are there any plans to fix permanent wires? Symonds Yat must be one of the worst places to set the course up.

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Adrian Cooper
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Post by Adrian Cooper » Mon Sep 29, 2008 7:11 pm

I can't understand this preocupation with stringing poles all over the place. What's wrong with just enjoying the paddling?

I'm glad they seemed to have scotched putting big obstacles in the middle of the river just to support poles.

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Post by furby » Mon Sep 29, 2008 7:56 pm

Thanks Adrian for the explaination, the first and only time I paddled the rapids there was about 8-9 years ago when I was a sprog.

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Post by jmmoxon » Wed Oct 01, 2008 11:12 pm

So far (last weekend) they had put a double line of blocks across the main channel by the bottom of the island - wouldn't do rental boats any good at all.

It's a long portage on river left!

Mike
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Slaphappy
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Post by Slaphappy » Mon Oct 13, 2008 11:07 am

Any progress on the works? will they be open this weekend? 18th/19th.

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wezzzy
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Post by wezzzy » Tue Oct 14, 2008 5:48 am

It says in Canoe Focus that the 15th (Wednesday) is the cut off day for the work in the river but work will continue on the island and bank.
"the rapids will be re-opened to navigation on this date come what may"

I was thinking of going down on Sunday but I bet it will be busy.

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wezzzy
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Post by wezzzy » Thu Oct 16, 2008 6:11 am

Any news on the Yat?

Is it open?
Is it better?
Is it worth the money?
Is it worth a trip at the weekend?

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Post by Robson » Thu Oct 16, 2008 7:37 am

wezzzy wrote:Any news on the Yat?

Is it open?
Is it better?
Is it worth the money?
Is it worth a trip at the weekend?
>Nope.
>Anything is better than what it was.
>Probably not!
>Never.
Can't think of anything to say in less than 50 cha

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aleeivel
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Post by aleeivel » Thu Oct 16, 2008 7:58 am

Nice to see a nice +ve attitude
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Post by Robson » Thu Oct 16, 2008 8:15 am

aleeivel wrote:Nice to see a nice +ve attitude
Anytime, Anytime.
Can't think of anything to say in less than 50 cha

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