River Lune - Beck Foot to Rawthey Confluence

North of the Severn drainage, west of the Pennines
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Jim Pullen
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Re: RIVER LUNE (Tebay to Rawthey Confluence)

Post by Jim Pullen »

Found on the Cumbrian Canoeists website, very positive:
New and IMPROVED egress on River Lune – Killington Road Bridge

Two years ago, on a grey and wet afternoon, a small group of paddlers were struggling up the steep bank, kayak on shoulders, trying to egress the river Lune at Killington Road Bridge.

We had noticed that there was a working party on the bank, doing some autumn clearance work on the Killington Reserve, owned by the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Paul, a reserve warden, came over and asked “who is in charge …..”. “Who wants to know …..” was the reply and a stilted and hesitant conversation ensued, as if another one of those landowner challenges was about to kick off.

Paul Wilkinson is the Yorkshire Dales National Park Warden for the Killington Reserve and was very keen to make contact with the canoe/kayak fraternity, with a view of discussing egress arrangements! He was open, friendly, interested in supporting all users of the reserve and a breath of fresh air to discuss access with.

To cut a long story short, after 2 years of hard work from Paul, a pledge of a working party from Cumbria Canoeists and an offer of joint funding resulted in an improved egress facility. The steps have been professionally installed. They are now a well used and extremely welcomed facility to help all paddlers to leave the river safely and arrive at the take out, next to the parked cars, on the road at Killington Road Bridge.

A big thank you must go out to Paul Wilkinson for his hard work and negotiating skills with his “Lords and Masters” at the National Park. A thank you to the Yorkshire Dales National Park for agreeing the facility and for installing it so professionally - at NO expense to ‘Cumbria Canoeists’.

If all paddlers could note the preferred egress point is directly beside the road bridge, river left, which saves paddlers from a long, greasy and slippery drag through the reserve and protects the reserve from environmental damage of hauling boats along its banks and path.

Congratulations to all those involved in this simple and effective egress project, which has resulted in a “win-win” situation for all stakeholders involved in access and egress on the River Lune.

Mike Sunderland

Local River Advisor for the Lune

Done any NE/NW rivers not on the site? PM me!

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Re: RIVER LUNE (Tebay to Rawthey Confluence)

Post by geyrfugl »

Paddled the Lune yesterday, at 0.41m on the Killington New Bridge gauge. The tree stump in the strid has now gone (it was there just a month ago), meaning that four of us were able to paddle this section - although I wouldn't want to do it at a much lower level. A short boat definitely helps, though Terry Hailwood got down it neatly in a Burn. Couple of photos (both taken from video frames on a HeroHD). The red boat is Ann Jones in a Mamba, I'm in an Ammo. Doug demonstrated that it is possible to get it wrong in a GTX and still survive (upside down, left of the rock...).


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El Pres
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Re: RIVER LUNE (Tebay to Rawthey Confluence)

Post by El Pres »

Nice Pics, I didnt think there was enough water yesterday to get down it. Good effort.
Please note :-
There is work going on at the weir just above Lunes Bridge ( The Tebay Gorge ) if anyone is planning to paddle that section.
Looks like scaffolding is invloved.


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Re: RIVER LUNE (Tebay to Rawthey Confluence)

Post by Lancs_lad »

vid showing high water levels - click click

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Re: RIVER LUNE (Tebay to Rawthey Confluence)

Post by markrobinson_1 »

Paddled from Beck Foot to the Rawthey confluence yesterday while the Lune was dog low, pretty sure we scraped down more than we paddled. There's a tree in John's Stone that you can't see until it's too late, it's obviously been there a while since it's had it's branches trimmed off nicely. Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures but might have a few decent stills from the GoPro when I take a look back.

The Strid was ridiculously tight to all but those in a smallest of playboats and fast reactions.

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Re: River Lune - Beck Foot to Rawthey Confluence

Post by snuggle_bunny »

large nasty tree stump approx 250 meters upstream from road bridge near sedburgh (lincoln bridge). marked by yellow fluorescent work vest river left of centre. can be spotted from 100 meters or so upstream in low/medium level but not visible in high water. pinning hazard/strainer but passable river right close to the large slab of angled rock

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Tree in John's Stone rapid

Post by callwild »

A few photos of the tree in John's Stone Rapid just above Lincolns Inn Bridge.
Hardly mentioned in the North West England Guide this rapid used to be fairly straightforward.
However since this tree got wedged there is now considerable risk of getting pinned so take care and inspect if you are in any doubt.
Probably worse in low water.
These pictures were taken in very low water about 0.45 on the guage.






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Re: River Lune - Beck Foot to Rawthey Confluence

Post by jack_kayak »

Ran the Lune today (24/10/2013) and previous Sunday (20/10/2013) at around 0.68m or so on the gauge and this tree seems to have gone. From above and below, it seemed to be clear, with nothing sticking out of the water or the water falling over the drop in a strange way when we did it. Obviously we did it in levels a bit higher than those above, so do still get out and have a look if you want to be safe.

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Re: River Lune - Beck Foot to Rawthey Confluence

Post by mole »

Unfortunately, ignore the comments above. The tree is still at Johns stone rapid and looks as well wedged as ever. There is also some wood trapped at the top of the strid on the RR side of the stone, its been trimmed and not a problem at the top end of scrape on trhe gauge but may start to be an issue at really low levels.

Sometimes it's just too much effor......aughhh

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Stroppy gent at Killington bridge take out

Post by geyrfugl »

Having stopped about 30m above the bridge, and taken out using the good path (river left) which we have been asked (politely) to use on a previous trip, I found myself being harangued by a bloke in a tone more appropriate to someone who had just vandalised his car or buggered his wife. He stood holding the gate shut against me, blocking anywhere I could have temporarily rested my heavy boat (which might have made me more amenable to conversation) and accused me of deliberately ignoring the set of newly constructed steps (which I had never seen before, and couldn't actually see from the path by the gate). I attempted (initially politely) to point out that we had been previously asked to use the good path, which takes an easy gradient with good footing, but he essentially ignored everything I was trying to say and refused to acknowledge the possibility of paddlers doing what they had been asked, and using the better takeout. As I now had a queue of similarly encumbered paddlers behind me, and the weather was hardly conducive to standing around conversing, I attempted to acknowledge his point and terminate the conversation. As he showed no signs of giving way and letting me past without some form of cowering apology, I matched his assertiveness, at which point (having produced no evidence of who he was or on what authority he was haranguing me - I had assumed he was an angler) he came out with "we work with Canoe England". I can't think of a better gambit to get canoeists to stop taking you seriously. And with his attitude, is it any wonder that recreational paddlers treat Canoe England with utter contempt ? On reflection, I think he must be nothing to do with CE (thank god), but he did nothing to help Canoe England's image...

By contrast, fisherman we've previously spoken to here seemed quite polite and good-natured, even when looking at the river as a possible last-ditch trip in mid-summer when levels had proved well too low elsewhere (we hadn't really expected to find enough water here either, but as we were driving over the bridge anyway...) I'm not sure if it was anglers or walkers who had first drawn my attention to the good path we now use, but I am sure it was done politely as a bit of useful advice, and not as some self-appointed tin-pot dictator seeking to portray all paddlers as the enemies of conservation...

There do appear to be a set of steps or recent origin at the take out (by the eddy which, if you miss it, you will be beyond the bridge and obliged to egress on the downstream side past the "no public access" signs). Where we took out, there's a better eddy, an easier get-out, and a good path at a sensible gradient, where you stand less chance of injuring yourself than trying to climb the steep steps (which admittedly are an improvement of the steep muddy bank that we have been trying to avoid).

If those responsible for the conservation area wish to revert the excellent graded path to nature (can't imagine why they would, but..) then a discreet and informative sign would achieve this much better than than an anonymous holier-than-thou <person> getting in the way of tired cold paddlers struggling with heavy boats.

A polite approach might have made me consider the request, but as a direct result of his attitude I will certainly be continuing to use the excellent easy take-out and path that we have previously been advised to use. As the people making that request have no less right to be heard than this bloke, and took the time to be polite and helpful, I'm sure they are the ones to believe.

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Post by geyrfugl »

Hmm, from the thread above it looks as though the steps must have been there for about three years - clearly not adequately publicised or signed. To quote Jim quoting from Cumbria Canoeists:
... directly beside the road bridge, river left, which saves paddlers from a long, greasy and slippery drag through the reserve and protects the reserve from environmental damage of hauling boats along its banks and path.
The exit we have been using does *not* involve anything greasy or slippery (even after the recent "damp" winter), and doesn't need anyone to drag or haul boats. It's a clear path at a shallow gradient, mostly over bedrock and leading directly onto the top track. From his actions after we had finally got past this bloke, he appears to have been unaware of its existence as he went along (not very far) to have a look. If the reserve is wardened by an employee of the YDNP and this guy was either the warden or masquerading as the warden, then he is doing an excellent job of putting them in a very bad light indeed. How much better would it have been if the conversation had gone like this...
"Hi, I'm .<name> <official position> [presents ID]. Had a good trip ?"
"Yes, thanks"
"Had you noticed that we've installed a set of steps to make egress from the river easier? Here, pop your boat on the fence and I'll show you..."
"No, I hadn't. Oh, they look a bit steep, I think I prefer the easy path back there we've been advised to use previously"
"Ah, we're trying to deter people from using that because <reasoned argument here>. Who advised you to use that ?".
"Oh, someone friendly and helpful a few years ago, seemed like a nice chap, no idea if he was anything official. We've used that egress ever since as it was much easier than the steep bank here, and being mostly on bedrock and not at all steep or slippery was obviously causing less damage to the bank. I'm surprised the reserve hadn't taken the trouble to signpost it visible from the river."

and so on.

It's unfortunate that my forward-facing GoPro kept crashing today, so it wasn't running during the encounter, otherwise I could put a picture here to see if someone can identify the guy... It's an unusual encounter, as I usually find that simply having a GoPro on my helmet seems to deter people from being belligerent like this. Maybe he had time to check that the little red light wasn't flashing...

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Mike M
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Re: River Lune - Beck Foot to Rawthey Confluence

Post by Mike M »

This sounds like the very grumpy Angler i had a "words" with a few months ago. He was ranting at me about disturbing the fishing (which did quite amuse me as a) he was n't actually fishing and b) i had just finished a very pleasant chat with another fisherman who was stood in the river in his waders as i paddled by) He was turning a very strange shade of red whilst yelling that i was n't allowed on the river as they had an agreement with the BCU !! Over the years i've lost track of the number of times that i was going to be reported and i'm still waiting.

A particular favourite was the Fishermen who approached me i was walking down under the viaduct towards the get in who "ranted" i was n't allowed to get in down at Beck foot. He was left rather open mouthed and quiet as i said "fine" and promptly got on "low gill" and paddled that down to the normal get in !!
Born to paddle................forced to work.

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Re: River Lune - Beck Foot to Rawthey Confluence

Post by andypagett »

Did this at 0.41 on Sunday. To give some context to 'scrape' we found the first mile or so, and a bit in the middle, as it meanders through fields to be just passable without getting out to walk. BUT both gorge sections, and the three main drops were all very nice and technical, with some smaller rapids in the gorge sections available which are washed out even at 0.65m

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