Monday, 29 March 2010

Tales of Tutbury weir

Viv, Stewart, Matt, Ben (in open canoes), Mike, Lynette ( in a double kayak), Trevor and Christine (in single kayaks) took the opportunity to paddle 11 miles of the River Dove normally closed to kayakers. The event, expertly organised by Burton Canoe Club, takes place only once a year when landowners and anglers allow access. A minibus and club members cars were on hand to make the car shuttle easy.

After a briefing we launched just above Aston Bridge near Sudbury. The river meanders through open fields until we reached the first weir near Tutbury. Watching others take the weir there were different ways to tackle the drop. Kayakers could take the weir almost anywhere but canoes had to either find a narrow concrete channel in the featureless lip or take the fish ladder to river-left. Lining up using a tree trunk lodged upstream Ben and Matt took the channel (video above, please note it's not me wearing the pink helmet!). Trev and Christine dropped over the middle while Viv took the fish ladder. Mike and Lynette portaged around not wishing to damage their glassfibre.

Although it rained for much of the remaining miles and two furthur weirs a good time was had by all. The get out was just north of Burton after the Dove passes under the A38. Thanks to Trevor and Viv for organising.