here to help deal with such cases.
If we can't agree that means there is dispute - so it'll be marked as disputed access (i.e.red)
here to help deal with such cases.
If we can't agree that means there is dispute - so it'll be marked as disputed access (i.e.red)
The upper bit of what's marked as Vyrnwy is actually Afon Banwy - the clue being another river heading to Lake Vyrwy!
Last edited by KeithD; 29th-May-2011 at 05:12 PM.
I've added the section of the Trent we paddle regularly as a club (a mile or two above Swarkestone Bridge to the junction with the Derwent and the Trent and Mersey Canal).
I'm not aware of any access restrictions.
It's an interesting project.
With regard to Canals, I think they should be shown. The current statistic is that we have access to only 4% of inland waterways, and that as I understand it includes canals.
Although the access map could come with a spec that says that it refers only to natural water courses. We don't want the fishing lobby accusing the map of being inaccurate (look at all those canals they can paddle on that they've ignored! Of course the natural retort to that is "look at all those specially built fishing lakes you can fish on", but I digress...)
There are a load of existing Google-mapped waterways for Somerset here. No idea if it's possible to import the data (Doug?), but it's a shame that there is not an equivalent site for every other English and Welsh county.
Last edited by John Saunders; 29th-May-2011 at 07:30 PM. Reason: Typo: "county" not "country"
I does go to show how many rivers there are in one county. Could be used as a "shopping list" for someone to input from.
This tread has prompted me to get a move on with something that I have been working on. Prompted by a thought, wouldent it be nice if I could check out a web page that shows me where to get on and off a local river or canal. I had a go at making up a spreedsheet type of thing showing access points as co ords. Then with a bit of development Lat and long to enter into a sat nav.
I asked a local canoe trader who also works in creating web pages and web sites for advice on what to do. I had bought "the Dummies guide to web pages" and I though HOW HARD CAN IT BE. Err very.
Any how it turns out he was working on creating a web site called midlands canals, so if I could give him a hand. I could then tack on my wed site onto it. There are a lot of canals in the West Midlands and after a year I think that we have the majority of it done now.
So at long last I can get on with creating a web site that shows where you can get a canoe / kakak on and off a canal in the midlands. All I need is some time to do it, I now know how to, and intend to use Ordnance Survey open data mapping as a backdrop, with Google as a back up.
Hopefully it wont take me a year to do this time.
Should canals have a different colour code?
Trouble is though that those same waterways licenses also cover some rivers such as the Severn below Stourport. Also, to people who do not canoe, and to the fishermen, their argument will be that there are all those canals available which we have conveniently omitted from the map.
There will be some way of screening out the canal system on the basis that
- we pay for this
- we share this with walkers, anglers, motorised vessels, industry etc
- Whilst valuable, this is the equivalent of allowing ramblers to use "A" roads
The next area of focus will be access agreements and we must be ready and able to tackle this and show
- The limited extent of rivers covered by agreement
- The limitations on the time during which access is granted (often only one day)
- The limitations on numbers/groups allowed access
- other significant restrictions which reduce the benefit of such "agreements"
Canoe England have indicated they will be able to provide information on such agreements that they are party to within the next week or so.
Would anyone like to volunteer to lead the compiling of this data into spreadsheet/database format to enable us to demonstrate why this is not an effective solution to the access problem?
Within Doug's link the the Brighton studies (http://www.brighton.ac.uk/waterrecreation/) there was this map of river access in the South East
Unfortunately there isn't one for each region or it would make our job easier! It demonstrates quite clearly that there are many rivers with no access, though it presumably makes no effort to check if the rivers are big enough to physically paddle.
I've been away for a few days, so great to see the progress on this, however, there are a few rivers which have now been inputed where the current access situation shown is wrong.
The agreement here has not existed at all for at least five years. It is now paddled far more than previously, but there is severe trouble with local landowners and one particular miscreant with nothing better to do with his time but hassle paddlers. Change from orange to red.
Section from Black Robin Beck to Slenningford. Now has a restrictive agreement endorsed by CE despite most paddlers' better judgement. Change this section from red to orange.
Tarr Steps to Exe confluence. Land owner at put-in changed a few years ago and the agreement was scrapped (not clear if it was still CE endorsed anyway at this point). Doesn't seem to have changed numbers padlling. Change from orange to red.
Hope this helps!
In Wales there are no "agreements" since Canoe Wales don't agree but we need to show what was "on offer" with the caveat that CW don't agree.
Keep flagging up these issues.
Not sure I'd agree with this.In Wales there are no "agreements" since Canoe Wales don't agree but we need to show what was "on offer" with the caveat that CW don't agree.
There were 11 agreements in Wales before CW stopped negotiating. Since then the Wye and Usk one was imposed and I think the national trust have suggested one for the Glaslyn gorge. It's certainly not clear which ones would have continued had CW taken a different stance.
In the case of the conwy, the number limits and signing-in clauses were regularly being ignored for years beforehand and I doubt the anglers would have continued to renew the agreement when most paddlers were ignoring their ridiculous terms anyway.
In England I note the Dart (possibly the most popular ww river in the UK) is shown as having disputed access, despite the anglers and landowners offering terms, but CE no longer endorsing the agreement. If you want consistency then this should be orange too? Ditto the Swale where the charity paddle would still be offered one weekend a year, yet SOC have decided to no longer run it as the Swale is now regularly paddled without confrontation.
Actually, thinking about this again - surely the only ones marked orange should be those where you can paddle at certain times and be sure not to get abuse by landowners/fishermen as they believe an agreement to be in place? In which case I'd go Conwy as a very bright red and the Dart as orange!
There are two other tributaries to the Cam, the Rhee (Ree?) and I think a second Granta/Cam. The local canoe club paddle one of these (the Rhee/Ree, I think) once a year down from Barrington. I would guess these upper reaches, being beyond the jurisdiction of the Cam Conservancy all count as disputed access, even though I'm not aware of anyone specifically forbidding access.
I mention these, because I think these smaller upper tributaries that are rarely paddled today are a large percentage of your missing 96% of disputed rivers. Another missing part would presumably be the backwaters off the main navigations.
Sorry I haven't time to trace them for you. I am full of admiration for this project and those helping complete it. Well done all!
Is what is labelled as Wychwood not actually the Evenlode? (Eynsham, off Thames west of Oxford)
Excellent bit of kit Keith. top thumbs you to you and yours.
I've added/amended a few bits.
Added the River Washburn in Yorkshire.
Amended a bit of the River Nidd in Knaresborough (although I may have said 'yes' rather than 'no' in the disputed access bit.
Amended a section of the River Ure above Ripon. There is an access agreement from Hack Fall to Sleningford.
Just a thought,because a few highlights would be more meaningful than a sea of green.
The Ure Access agreement has been in place for many years and works pretty well. It was suspended last year after some abuse, butyit is now up and running again. Basically it is paddling any day from October - March (inc), no paddling April - June (inc), then a mixture of Saturdays and Sundays and every Thursday in July - Spetember (inc). Also any day it is in spate. The ure is often very low in the summer months anyway.
Not a great 'arrangement' then.
Well, this is actually proving to be highly inspiring. If anybody thinks there are not many places to paddle, try a bit of online exploration. I've found literally dozens of rivers that look interesting to paddle of which I had never heard, in the course of completing the access map.
I've spent a few days now working on the Severn "catchment" (with tributaries inc Warwks Avon), as well as the Somerset Avon. Whilst there are still some small rivers/streams I've missed out, & I may have missed others accidentally, I've now added in everything I THINK might be paddleable. A lot of these I found evidence of previous paddling & access info, but for many I could find nothing on the web. This is not conclusive though, so I may have info wrong.
The way I have been approaching this is as follows:
1. Use the wiki List of Rivers of England/Wales (as usefully linked by Adrian) to identify every water of any significant size flowing into the Severn system. This is a great tick list. Check on the Output map that its not already done. Also scan along the river on the OS map in case any are missed (not found any)
2. Use an OS map website (I've used Bing maps for this) to get a rough idea of stream size, in conjunction with google satellite views. On OS maps, if the stream/river shows as two parallel blue lines it is quite possibly big enough, single lined parts are small.
3. Open a new Input screen & use the search to get to a nearby village.
4. Check CE/UKRGB/the worldwide web etc for any info on these rivers (the CE West Mids pages were very useful http://www.canoe-englandwestmidlands...B/Default.aspx). As an aside, I find the Canoe England website & regions almost impossible to navigate to find info, its far easier just to google it to get to the relevant pages). Put a link on your input page to these pages, for the river you are looking at.
5. Estimate the furthest up a river might be navigable with reasonable water levels. I use the width of nearby single track roads to gauge how wide a river is, & if its as roughly as wide as a road it goes in! I am not interested in if the river is blocked, or easy to pass down, merely if it is theoretically OK to paddle in a kayak.
6. Tick the appropriate access option, add any info or links, & start clicking. By default I've used the satellite view, but sometimes in trees & towns you can lose this so I flip to the more approximate map screen, or compare to the OS map.
It takes a while, but if you have the chance & enjoy looking at maps, you learn a massive amount as you go on! Whilst an element of judgement is involved, I do believe this approach is a good way of getting a comprehensive picture of the paddleable rivers of England & Wales.
I've done about 80% of the known paddleable rivers north of Machester/York and south of the border now. As you can see there's a lot of red (not that that has ever stopped me paddling these beautiful rivers)!
It looks to me like all you midlands-based open canoeists are spoilt for your flat canals and navigations! ;-)
If anyone wants to crack on with Wales, then Chris Sladen's entire guidebook is available on the canoe wales site here: http://www.canoewales.com/paddling-in-wales-rivers.aspx this is by far the most thorough text available, covering some 310 sections.
I've been using a similar method to Mal, using UKRGB, White Water Lake District, English White Water, A Canoeist's guide to the North East and Yorkshire rivers, together with personal knowledge as my references. I tend to use the street map when the rivers are large, switching to satelite for the small unmarked becks. I also have the OS map open on Bing to help.
Regarding the River Leadon in Herefordshire/Gloucestershire, I'll check this one out. As far as I know there isn't really any problems on it. It is paddleable, and it was on the local news a few months back as a guy was trying to get it cleaned up so that it could be used more for recreational purposes (NOT exclusively fishing).
They're aren't really any problems on the majority of rivers marked red, but (unless I've completely misunderstood the point of this) the use could potentially be disputed in the future unless it's actually a navigation?Regarding the River Leadon in Herefordshire/Gloucestershire, I'll check this one out. As far as I know there isn't really any problems on it. It is paddleable, and it was on the local news a few months back as a guy was trying to get it cleaned up so that it could be used more for recreational purposes (NOT exclusively fishing).
You're right, but I wasn't sure if it was a navigation. It was traditionally used for industry and there are a fair few mills along it. But I have since fund that although it has been paddled, negotiations for a VAA are underway for it. So it does indeed need to remain red (I will say that it is a bit of a ditch anyway!)They're aren't really any problems on the majority of rivers marked red, but (unless I've completely misunderstood the point of this) the use could potentially be disputed in the future unless it's actually a navigation?
Not sure, but this is what I found. It could be pretty old.
Regarding the Ure access agreement, most of the local paddlers I know seem to be happy with it, and it does actually work pretty well. Still, this isn't the right thread for a debate about it.
I've also updated a very small section of the Ure in Ripon where the BCU own the river right bank.
Added the Dovey and Mawddach in Wales (well, parts of)
Apologies if this has been asked or mentioned before, but I was speed reading and didn't see it...
Is the data you are collecting in a recognised format? Stored in text form etc? With a backup?
I know from experience that projects like this can soon stop when the main person is unable to continue for any reason but as long as the data is in a good format it could be picked up sometime in the future by someone else to continue the work if needed.
OK, here's a snapshot of the map, a week has made a big difference;
Steadily getting there!
The Midlands, East & East Anglia need a bit of work. I'm working round the East Anglian coast from the Rivers List adding the inland rivers, but am having a break now till Monday.
The north (n of manch), Severn Catchment, south central & south east are well on the way if not nearly there, in terms of sensibly paddleable rivers.
Wales has many of the key rivers done, but there are lots still in need of attention.
Keith, does the data catch the distance clicked for each river, as it does in the standard map version? Would be very interesting to compare total distance of each with the previously quoted figures, once we get a bit closer to being comprehensive.
Thanks to all who've been helping!
Excellent work Mal. Unfortunately I need to be earning a living during the day.
I did have a scan over the map since it seems to have rather a lot of green; there are quite considerable lengths of canal which are distorting the picture.
We will soon be able to filter out the canals but in the meantime one of the characteristics of all canals is the need for water. In most cases this was satisfied by building the canals next to, or nearby, rivers so seek out those rivers and put a big red line along it!!
I'm also finding that while many river navigations have been marked on the map, the upstream section of the river and tributaries have been omitted. Since these will invariably have disputed access there can often be as much red on the map as green from a river that is thought of as a navigation.
Yeah, this is one of the key things I'm finding as I work my way round the country - a navigation marked, but the old rivers, upper river sections & tributaries are not always done. I'm trying to mark any rivers as far up as they look physically paddleable in a kayak. I'm sure we'll get them in the end.
I'm not sure what to do about all the drains in the flatlands of the east. Very little info on the interwebby, though some look big enough to canoe down. Anybody got intimate knowledge of the fens/Lincolnshire etc?
Map looking a lot redder now!
I did the Billinghay Skirth off of the Witham near Tattershall bridge the other day and can tell you that is easily navigable by a canoe up to the Village bridge of Billinghay - I didn't have time to go further - I will in the coming weeks. This Skirth is classed as non-navigable I think (?)
The River Bain off of the Witham at Dogdyke all the way to Kirky on Bain is OK in a canoe although some parts are shallow if there hasn't been any rain for a while. Done that. This will also be classed as non navigable.
You also have the River Slea / Kyme Eau from Chapel Hill on the Witham all the way to Sleaford...This can be done as there are bloggs of it on this site. Only part of this is classed as Navigable.
I'd add these myself but need an early night as I have a very early drive tomorrow...
In future I will add all the places I paddle to your map.
Hope this helps
Updated The Suffolk Stour, now goes Red all the way upstream until it's little more than a ditch.
Added Belchamp Brook and the river Glem (sorry Keith forgot to add the password)
SF Peterborough 14'
weighs 7 Stone! 44.5kg
Bell Yellowstone (so light)
Of course, the true picture is key.
Once the "zap all navigations" button is added we have both options anyway!
Currently on "the bench" on the Basingstoke waiting for venison burgers!
Be sure to extend the rivers course far enough upstream. These pictures are several miles upstream of the limit of the rivers course plotted on the map.
and this one is even further up!
Many rivers are very paddle-able well upstream of the blue line shown on "Map" view.
Last edited by KeithD; 7th-June-2011 at 09:22 PM.