RIVER SEVERN (Jackfields Rapids)

From the Warwickshire Avon in the south, to the Trent in the north
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Mark R
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RIVER SEVERN (Jackfields Rapids)

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SimonMW
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Re: RIVER SEVERN (Jackfields Rapids)

Post by SimonMW »

Jackfields has changed a huge amount since this guide was written. The whole bank underwent reconstruction, the result of which removed many of the rapid's features, including the large wave forming rock at the bottom.

The site is still good for practice in summer. In 2020 a nice wave formed at about 0.45 on the Buildwas gauge, but now it is not very good in 2021 due to what I think are rocks shifting on river right removing some of the flow feed into the feature. There is still a wave stopper about 3/4 of the way down the rapid, but this is very finicky. In ow levels it is steep making surfing without pearling in difficult, yet it isn't retentive enough to do spinning. At medium levels it can be a nice wave to surf, if sometimes needing some skill to stick.

Jackfield is a site that, with some imagination could actually be a really, really good venue. I have been told of a couple of occasions where remodelling was planned, and at one time in the past the council ready and enthusiastic to discuss it, but for some unknown reason nobody with the power to do so seems interested in it. It's a shame because the middle wave could be made into something properly good, particularly at medium flows, with some definite potential at the bottom where the big rock used to be, and it would be much better for slalom too. A couple of years ago at one high flow I surfed on a wave there that had my Ripper bouncing! It just needs some love and attention. With it taking 2hrs or so to get to decent white water in the area, developing Jackfield makes perfect sense. I just wish someone would be proactive about it.

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Jim
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Re: RIVER SEVERN (Jackfields Rapids)

Post by Jim »

I paddled there for the first time last week with a friend who has long term involvement in the site and who explained to me the amount of work he had done last summer piling rocks up to improve some of the eddies, only for the winter levels to wash it all away again and leave what you see now. As you note, the river is a constantly changing environment...

Chris Bolton
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Re: RIVER SEVERN (Jackfields Rapids)

Post by Chris Bolton »

piling rocks up to improve some of the eddies, only for the winter levels to wash it all away again
That's inevitable. Any rocks that can be moved by humans (unless they use techniques from Stonehenge or the pyramids) will be moved by floods. You need big rocks and a digger to do any good. I was paddling at Burrs on the Irwell on Saturday, and even some of the digger placed rocks had shifted; the course is nothing like it was originally.

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Re: RIVER SEVERN (Jackfields Rapids)

Post by SimonMW »

Not sure who that was, Jim, but the site hasn't changed for years. I'm a regular there and am unaware of any changes being made to any of the eddies on the main rapid. The site really does need some proper work done, though.

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