(Sunderland Bridge to Durham)

NAME OF RIVER: River Wear. Sunderland Bridge (A167 just South of Durham) to Durham.

WHERE IS IT?: South of Durham off the A167.

PUT-INS/ TAKE-OUTS: Put in at Sunderland Bridge (on the A167 just south of Durham, NZ 266 377).

I would advise getting onto the river Browney (guide please! - Ed.) which is about 100m south of the Wear and flows into it after about a mile. This avoids the bolder choke between the bridges and is an atmospheric river in its own right.

There are numerous access points in Durham City - try Shincliffe bridge on the A167, the amateur rowing club at the end of Green Lane NZ 288 411.


TIME NEEDED: About 2 hours.

ACCESS HASSLES: Not aware of an access agreement. Section is not often paddled

WATER LEVEL INDICATORS: We paddled in quite low conditions without too much trouble.The number for Rivercall North East is 09066197722, which gives three gauge readings for the Wear.

GRADING: Mixture of grade 1 and grade 2.

MAJOR HAZARDS/ FALLS: There are a number of trees in the river - these can easy be seen in advance and in most cases a safe line found.

There is a boulder choke between the old and the new bridges at Sunderland bridge.

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: A pleasant touring section with no portages or particularly hard sections. Section has potential for novice trips and summer paddling.

Pictures of this section of the Wear

OTHER NOTES: Not as good a section as Durham - Finchale, but a good alternative. Similar but flatter than the section down from Bishop Auckland.