NAME OF RIVER: Water of Girvan.

WHERE IS IT?: South Ayrshire, Scotland. Travelling south on the A77 from Ayr take the B7045 to Straiton.


Put in: turn west on the B741 from Straiton. The bridge NS376049 is 200 metres after the turn, wide grass verge.

Take out: Take the C road west to Crossmichael from the B741 south west of Kirkmichael. Park by bridge at NS34407.

APPROX LENGTH: 8.3 km, 59 metre drop.

TIME NEEDED: 2.5 to 3 hours with plenty stops for play.

ACCESS HASSLES: Runs through sporting estates so watch fishing season. Grassyards CC members have run this over at least 10 years on Sundays with no problems. See the SCA notes on Access regarding the situation in Scotland generally.

WATER LEVEL INDICATORS: Needs a lot of water, all rocks should be well covered at takeout. We ran this when the SEPA reading was 1.4, base level 0.2.

GRADING: After some initial grade 3 drops there is a long but scenic Grade 1/ 2 section past Blairquan Castle to the start of Tranew Gorge. The gorge section is sustained Grade 3.


The Slot - - at the right of the first major ledge in the Gorge and Tranew Linn - - just below it can be inspected together. The Linn is undercut and at low levels you can paddle behind the curtain.

Watch out for trees. There was (30/11/03) a particularly large fallen tree across the river about half a kilometre before the take out, we passed the root end on river right.

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: After some initial fast play waves, a scenic meander through country estates is followed by an interesting gorge section characterised by a series of drops over sandstone ledges. There are regular fast playwaves to sustain interest.

Other photos and videos at


CONTRIBUTED BY: Douglas Wilcox, Grassyards CC -



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