River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

The Somerset Frome and Dorset Stour and westwards
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Mark R
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River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by Mark R » Sat Sep 13, 2008 3:11 pm

Last edited by Mark R on Thu Jan 21, 2016 6:53 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Liam Kirkham
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East Dart Tree.

Post by Liam Kirkham » Mon Apr 27, 2009 11:02 pm

There is a monster branchy little number spanning the whole width of the river just before the houses and confluence with the Upper Dart.

A definate portage.

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Re: River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by jam bo » Wed Jul 18, 2012 12:04 pm

Saw this on a running blog recently and thought it might be of interest..

http://4windsnavigation.blogspot.co.uk/ ... lodge.html

Mark Dixon
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Re: River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by Mark Dixon » Tue Nov 20, 2012 6:36 pm

http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/ho ... ionId=3215
Had a go at paddling this today with a few others, put on at Bellever Bridge about 1pm when level was 1.5 on this guage, the start was gentle grade 2 getting more sporty grade 3 but with many blind corners, not many Eddies and too many trees we decided to walk back after about a mile as it was too risky, West Dart was out of banks at 2m plus at time, think a bit lower may have been ok as it was very difficult to stop and portages would have been required.

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Re: River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by andy g » Tue Jan 21, 2014 9:28 am

Ran this with a small group of 5 on Saturday , when the Upper Dart was on "huge". All rocks were covered at Postbridge , and most at Dartmeet.
The first kilometer is still the most awkward, after the barbed wire (now a single strand which can be raised to a safe level river right) followed by the steep section where the branches are getting very difficult to dodge , but luckily most are still quite small.
The most difficult hazard occurs at the small footbridge below the steep section. The left hand option is blocked with a large branch which is clearly visible . The river right right route appears clear, but there is a sub-surface branch lurking which pinned our leaders boat. The rest of the group portaged this river right.
Putting in at Bellever bridge , where there is a Forestry Commission car park , would avoid these hazards, and still enable the best of the river to be enjoyed.
The rest of the trip was very much as described , steep fast flowing water through overhanging branches (which necessitated 2 other portages) , and plenty of granite boulders. At this level there were enough small eddies, but these would probably disappear quickjly at a higher water level.
Andy

Environment-Agency
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Re: River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by Environment-Agency » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:56 am

We at the Environment Agency are dealing with a serious outbreak of disease among migratory fish on many rivers in Devon including the River Dart. The Dart fishery has been in decline in recent years and this year a significant disease outbreak is estimated to have killed the majority of Salmon and Sea Trout that have entered the river so far.

We are asking for the assistance of all water users, including fishermen, dog walkers etc. to help the river recover. For canoeists this would include careful entry into and egress from rivers, paddling in good flows only and avoiding contact with river beds wherever possible. We also encourage canoeists to only paddle where there are agreed access arrangements in place.

We are currently trying to establish the extent and cause of the disease affecting rivers across Devon and Cornwall. Until we understand more and are able to implement any suitable measures, our only option to limit the impact of this disease is to protect the surviving salmon and sea trout and their spawn sites. Fish will potentially start to spwan from late September and eggs remain in gravels until around April, so this is a particularly sensitive period.

Thanks for your understanding and co-opertaion on this matter.

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Re: River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by Mark Dixon » Sat Jan 09, 2016 9:13 pm

Finally got to paddle this section, parking in the Forestry car park (£2 pay and display) level was just over a metre. Lots and lots of overhanging branches and tree lined sections a bit concerning at times but just about managed to stay in boat without portaging. There were 2 river wide trees just passable nearer the end of run.
It was an interesting grade 2/3 (more grade 3 than 2) excellent scenery. I think we just about got level right considering trees and wouldnt want to risk taking a group in much higher levels. I think its worth it for the novelty factor as it was good paddling at times, not sure I'll be rushing back though...
Mark

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Re: River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by andy g » Sun Jan 10, 2016 9:09 am

Mark

Your thoughts are similar to mine, an interesting river to have done , but not sure if would choose to repeat it, especially if there were other options.

Several of my club members do want to run one day, I am trying to work out if I want to accompany them. It needs a small tight group of trusted paddlers who are capable of paddling above Grade 3. A swim would be very tricky to deal with.

Andy

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Re: River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by Mark Dixon » Sun Jan 10, 2016 4:02 pm

andy g wrote:Mark

Your thoughts are similar to mine, an interesting river to have done , but not sure if would choose to repeat it, especially if there were other options.

Several of my club members do want to run one day, I am trying to work out if I want to accompany them. It needs a small tight group of trusted paddlers who are capable of paddling above Grade 3. A swim would be very tricky to deal with.

Andy
I've been speaking to a few people today about the East Dart as some have aspirations of doing it, if you take out the tree factor it is actually a really good step up from the Loop before tackling something like the Middle Tavy or West Dart, some were discussing a summer trimming trip, nothing detrimental to the trees but a bit of management in the right direction to make it an attractive option for smaller groups and open up the main channels.
There is good parking top and bottom and access is good, I think if its cleared a bit I am sure it would be run a lot more often.
I have heard from some its a sensitive river but in modern times paddlers are aware of their responsibilities.
I'll post here if anything becomes clearer.
Mark

Edit:
BTW we put in at Bellever Bridge to avoid the top barbed wire and strainers.

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Re: River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by andy g » Tue Jan 12, 2016 9:10 am

Mark Dixon wrote:I've been speaking to a few people today about the East Dart as some have aspirations of doing it, if you take out the tree factor it is actually a really good step up from the Loop before tackling something like the Middle Tavy or West Dart, some were discussing a summer trimming trip, nothing detrimental to the trees but a bit of management in the right direction to make it an attractive option for smaller groups and open up the main channels.
Mark,
I agree with you about this being a good step up from the Loop, and as long it is paddled responsibly then it would be a welcome alternative to the more popular runs.

Please let me know if and when you are thinking about a pruning party and I will try to bring down some volunteers from London and SE to help.

Andy

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Re: River East Dart - Postbridge to Dartmeet

Post by Mark Dixon » Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:28 pm

Paddled this on Easter Monday along with the West Dart, levels a bit low for both but the East is actually a much better continuous paddle and if it wasnt for the Hexworthy section I would head for the East Dart over the West every time.
A small pruning party has made it more accessible in medium levels but full spate would present difficulties, its clearer than the West though.
There is a portage just after some stepping stones not far from Dartmeet but river wide tree is clearly visible.

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