GUIDE TO LONG HOUSE GILL
(or, 'Tarn Beck')
NAME OF RIVER: Long House Gill. Also known as, Tarn Beck.
WHERE IS IT?: In the Southwest Lake District, flowing into Dunnerdale from Seathwaite Tarn in the Coniston Fells. It flows in to the River Duddon and forms a possible start point for this river.
PUT-INS/ TAKE-OUTS: It must be possible to paddle further up, but the section described is clearly visible beside the road near the village of Seathwaite. Put in at the bridge at 233968. Takeout at the small footbridge next to the layby, before it joins the River Duddon or carry on on this river.
APPROX LENGTH: 1 mile.
TIME NEEDED: 20 mins.
ACCESS HASSLES: Unknown.
WATER LEVEL INDICATORS: Needs lots of rain. It should be obvious whether you can float a boat down it or not. Inspection of the steepest section (Narrow steep 2m deep gorge)above seathwaite, where there is a small muddy laby will tell you whether there is enough water. If it looks horrible and pinny, come back another day.
GRADING: Mostly grade 4. One longer grade 5 gorge.
MAJOR HAZARDS/ FALLS: Trees. Very narrow. Below the road bridge, theres a small tree blocking a grade 4 drop (1/2/02), which can be inspected from the road where you fairly high above the river. Below this the river narrows through a small very fast gorge section, which exits onto a large pillow cushioning a large rock. This then leads over a 1-2 m fall. Below this overhanging trees are a bit of a pain.
Matt Gilbert (May 2002)...'I paddled Long House Gill today and there is a fence across the river just after the main gorge section. We managed to get under it but in high water it could be quite nasty.'
GENERAL DESCRIPTION: From the put-in, a long series of steep and narrow drops with pinning potential take the paddler through trees. The river then eases as it flows towards the River Duddon and only has a few small waves and drops to contend with. Watch out for a footbridge which may be low over the water in spate. The river ends where it meets the River Duddon.
OTHER NOTES: You would only want to do this if you were about to paddle the Duddon (missing out the harder sections), or as a small diversion on your way up to the Upper Duddon. Local outdoor centres gorgewalk the section above the bridge, so it may have potential for a walk in further up the river.
CONTRIBUTED BY: Simon Wiles, also Matt Gilbert and Mark Rainsley.