(Talybont to Llangynidr)


WHERE IS IT?: Flowing through a valley between the Black Mountains and Brecon Beacons, past Abergavenny.

PUT-INS/ TAKE-OUTS: You could start on the easier bit upstream, or put in at the bridge crossing the river at GR 122233 OS map 160, near Talybont on Usk. Take out downstream of the bridge in the centre of Llangynidr, river left.


TIME NEEDED: 1.5 hours.

ACCESS HASSLES: There is an access agreement, some details can be found at Also see for more info.

WATER LEVEL INDICATORS: We paddled this in low water. It is almost always paddleable in winter.

GRADING: Mostly Grade 1 then a stretch of 3 at the end. This final rapid is apparently harder in high water.


GENERAL DESCRIPTION: A pleasant but unexciting trip. The first few miles are bordering on completely flat, but there are plenty of pretty views and sheep to admire along the banks.

Eventually you reach Mill Falls, a long rapid where a series of natural/ manmade weirs and rocky reefs cross the river. There are plenty of opportunities to stop and surf along this stretch. It should be possible to portage this rapid on river right, let us know if you think otherwise. After this rapid, the river eases again and shortly after you arrive at the take-out bridge.

Pictures of the Usk

OTHER NOTES: We arrived at this river in search of whitewater thrills, and were disappointed. However, it makes a great stretch to learn moving water skills and it really is a nice valley...another stretch of the Usk which offers more continuous but still easy rapids is that from Sennybridge to Nant Bran Bridgerecommended.

CONTRIBUTED BY: Mark Rainsley.



Community Forum Comments on this Article
Re: River Usk - Talybont to Llangynidr -- AlexN
2019 Dec 24 01:45:55 PM
There is a tree below Spuhler's Folly below Llangynidr. It is immediatley below the ledge river right of centre. At 1.50 on the Llandetty gauge on 23/12/19 some of it was visible above water.
Re: River Usk - Talybont to Llangynidr -- stonercanoe
2018 Dec 24 09:51:11 PM
I have had 2 different mates watch paddlers walk over the crops, and drag boats over the crops. When approached about it they didn't give a dam.

Re: River Usk - Talybont to Llangynidr -- Chris Bolton
2018 Dec 24 09:07:02 AM
It's a bit sad that paddlers have to be told that - avoiding crop damage should be automatic.
Re: River Usk - Talybont to Llangynidr -- Canoe Wales Access
2018 Dec 24 08:42:16 AM
Please avoid damaging the crop in the field at the get-in: there's plenty of room to walk around the edge of the field - we risk losing access here if crop damage continues...
Re: River Usk - Talybont to Llangynidr -- stonercanoe
2018 Nov 17 02:54:31 PM
Warning for Mill Falls. River left just after the eddy under the house noticed a rock just sticking up out of the water with a circular hole in it. The hole is wide enough for a foot and leg. Would be horrible if arm or leg got threaded in it.

Never noticed this hole before.

The level today was 0.9

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