(Manchester Airport to Little Bollington)


WHERE IS IT?: This section of the Bollin runs from the Airport Inn at Manchester Airport, to Ashley Road, south west of Hale, and optionally to Little Bollington.

PUT-INS/ TAKE-OUTS: Put in: From public footpath along right bank opposite Airport Inn down steep, 5m bank (SJ 816 829). Parking in adjacent minor road bridging river. Take-outs: Road crossing at SJ770856; Footbridge by Hale golf club with 500m portage to road. Above weir at Little Bollington SJ 730 870 - (untried). No. 88 bus from Altrincham offers return transport to car.

Check feasibility of takeouts - river may not be accessible from Ashley Road? See forum thread for the guide which suggests Bow Lane instead.

APPROX LENGTH: 8.3km. to Ashley Road
Further 6.2km to Little Bollington

TIME NEEDED: 3 1/2 hours to Ashley Road

ACCESS HASSLES: None. Single angler encountered who made no comments.

WATER LEVEL INDICATORS: Use either the Wilmslow EA Gauge (Station 5153) or the Bollington Mill EA Gauge (Station 5016)  Higher levels will make more fallen trees impassable.

GRADING: Grade 1 at level paddled with single grade 1/2 rapid after railway crossing just before get out.

MAJOR HAZARDS/FALLS: Large weir at Little Bollington. Several fallen trees, most of which can be worked past from in the boat. Major tree fall obstruction 2km downstream from Ashley Road take-out would require portage. Possible further obstructions downstream.

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: Despite passing under the M56 and Manchester Airport's runway, it is a pastoral paddle, with the river mostly contained in a small gorge with limited pedestrian access to the banks. Numerous minor rapids makes for easy grade 1 paddling although restricted width on tight bends can cause problems in a longer boat. Not suitable for large groups.

OTHER NOTES: See also Forum pages for this guide