GUIDE TO THE AFON TWYMYN
(Tafolwern to A470 bridge)
NAME OF RIVER: Twymyn.
WHERE IS IT?: Mid Wales. Tafolwern. OS Landranger Sheet 136.
PUT-INS/ TAKEOUTS: Put in - Either tributary in Tafolwern (SH891026). Take out - A470 Road Bridge (SH825046).
There is plenty of parking space at the take out but very little at the put in.
APPROX LENGTH: 9 Km.
TIME NEEDED: 3 Hours.
ACCESS HASSLES: Unknown.
WATER LEVEL INDICATORS: If you can float at the get in the rest of the river should be okay. We ran it at bank full (on the tributaries)and it was a big bouncy blast.
Mike Wilson...'Paddled the Twymyn on 25/01/04. Water level was very low with the concrete bases of the green bridge pillars exposed at the get in. The top section was a bump and scrape but the scenery made up for it, and we saw an otter. Overhanging trees a small problem in the middle section but a huge tree was blocking the river as it was broached right across the last bridge before the gorge (Commins Coch?). This necessitated a portage on the left and then roping the boats across using the tree as a bridge. In higher levels it may be possible to paddle over the tree on river right. Even though the top section was a bit disapointing due to the level I wanted to let everyone it's still worth doing because the gorge was fantastic. At this level it was quite technical with a few rocks to dodge and we ended up with a couple of drama's! Also the middle of the gorge is a great spot for a picnic. We took the get out on the Dyfi as recommended by Chris Sladden as the parking was better but were confronted by a dog walking lady who told us that we shouldn't be paddling the Dyfi plus there were signs everywhere to this effect. Still we had a good day out!'
MAJOR HAZARDS/ FALLS: Jim Stevens 2/01/2006...'Paddled the Twymyn today. Most of the river clear of trees. The gorge had 1 tree in it just above the 2 boulders which form the crux. In medium to high water the tree is easily paddled over but in low water could be difficult particularly for paddlers new to the grade.'
Nathan Pearce (13/11/02)...'The route has a number of trees and debris in the river. At the get on the small road bridge has debris against it, allowing a small route against the right hand side. Most of the downed trees are easily passed, but some provide nasty obstacles. Inspection is recommended, although it can be done from the river. More debris against the road bridges, and the tunnel has a large tree completely spanning it. In high water this was possible to just pass over, creating a considerable drop on the other side, in low water I can see this being a complete blockage, requiring a portage. The gorge section was surprisingly free of trees.'
GENERAL DESCRIPTION: The river runs fairly easy with several rapids that reach grade 3 and with lots of play waves at high water. There are several bouncy sections that had the intermediates in our group whooping away.
After going under the road and rail bridge at Commins Coch the walls start to steepen and after 1 Km you reach the start of Glyn Twymyn gorge. At the level we ran it this was about 500 Metres of boily bouncy water (grade 3) with only fast eddies to deal with and good support strokes required. At a lower level some of the drops looked like they could be more technical but all was clear and runnable from the river. A portage is possible on river right from the start of the gorge but would be difficult once within.
The fun ends before the next rail bridge and then it's a sedate 500 Metre float to the take out river left after the road bridge.
OTHER NOTES: David Lloyd...(Sept 2004) A stunningly beautiful little gorge with some very interesting and technical Gd III. Watch for broached and pinned trees and mind the boulders in the bottom slot of the last crux of the gorge! Much more technical and interesting at low water in the gorge. A splendid paddle!'
Alex Rankin...(2/11/02) 'Paddled the Twymyn today. A few big trees down across the river but will only cause problems in big water. River level medium. Gorge seems more technical at this lower level, perhaps one inspection required to examine the last slot. Plenty of buzzards and dippers all the way down. Should hold up for the next couple of days.'
CONTRIBUTED BY: Andy Wilson, also Nathan Pearce, Mike Wilson. David Lloyd, Jim Stevens and Alex Rankin.