NAME OF RIVER: Hudeshope Beck.

If the level is very high you may be able to start higher up (NY945293), or follow the small road which follows the river up from Middleton-on-teesdale, there is space to park cars near the end of this road (NY948268) or river left of the bridge (NY951268), walk up as high as you like. Take out river left, once the river has joined the Tees, before the B6277 road bridge (NY946251), there is plenty of parking here; this is the usual get-in for the Racecourse section.

APPROX LENGTH: 2-4 miles.

TIME NEEDED: 1 hour+


WATER LEVEL INDICATORS: The final drop of note runs under the main-road (B6282) in Middleton-on-teesdale, if the river here below is easily paddleable then the section is good to go, the higher the better! Either get-in will also give a good indication. Some of the individual drops can be run at low water.


MAJOR HAZARDS/ FALLS: There are two waterfalls of note. The first announces the beginning of a small gorge, and is worthy of inspection: mainlining works even in low water. The second, though known locally as a weir is a wide 3-4 metre waterfall with a shallow and rocky landing, and is directly after by a river-wide tree held in place by metal, these can be portaged/assessed on river left.

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: This describes only the lower section. From underneath the bridge the river starts off gently, until we reach an s-bend rapid (III) underneath a footbridge. Shortly after this a horizon line indicates the first waterfall (IV), inspect on river left. This fall can be run even at low levels by following the main line, but at high levels there is more choice. The river continues with a couple of small rapids until it reaches a river-wide tree held in place by metal, shortly followed by the second waterfall, portage/assess both on river left. The landing for this river-wide fall is not favourable, at least at normal levels... The next few hundred metres are the most enjoyable of the river (III), with continuous rapids all the way down to the final drop (III) under the B6282 bridge. Paddle down until the river joins the Tees, and egress on river left before the road bridge (NY946251) - this is the usual get-in for the Racecourse section.


Photos of Hudeshope Beck