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Thread: Little Ouse

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Yorkshire
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    37

    Default Little Ouse

    A haunt of mine very many years ago when I lived in the area. I'm thinking of doing a Thetford to Brandon 'there and back' sometime soon and wondered what the flow was like nowadays. In other words is the return journey, Brandon to Thetford, a reasonably easy paddle or not?

    Also if anyone is familiar with the area I would like to hear about the River Black Bourne which again many years ago was certainly canoeable from Pakenham through Ixworth to the Little Ouse at County Hole between Euston and Barnham. Just wondered whether that is still possible? Looking on Google Earth (not the best view of course) it seems to have virtually 'dried up' in a number of places. Any local knowledge would be gratefully accepted.

    Lee

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    very soon to be norfolk
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    1,608

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    Thetford - Brandon - Thetford would be fine: very little flow but you'll obviously have to portage up the weirs. I've never heard of the River Black Bourne - i'll have to get a map out!
    Sam

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Attleborough, Norfolk
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    53

    Default

    Went fishing about three weeks ago from Santon Downham upstream towards Thetford. Flow was fine and the water level was about a foot down to what I've known. Just past the Thermalite site we got out and lined the canoe as it was so shallow. Didn't go any further as we spotted some Chubb and caught a couple just under 4lb!

    Enjoy your trip.
    Ian
    "E"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
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    Keynsham near Bristol
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    3,751

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by samB View Post
    I've never heard of the River Black Bourne - i'll have to get a map out!
    Sam
    It's on the Access Map but nothing seems known about it. If you get more information regarding its ability to be paddled please let me know.
    Keith

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Bury St Edmunds
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    54

    Default

    I live in Bury St Edmunds about 6 miles from the Blackbourne - we used to take the dog swimming in it long before I thought I'd own a canoe. My curiosity has been roused so I'll definitely follow it up; my mate lives in Ixworth and sings with The Blackbourne Singers - so he ought to know a bit more about the state of the river! I can't see any rights of way indicated along its banks so I don't think I'd be able to do a survey on foot. Actually, I might be able to get some idea if I get on my bike and check at all the access crossing points - a project for the coming months.

    Last week, we paddled on the Little Ouse from Brandon to Santon Downham but the water was getting quite shallow under the bridge at Santon - I had to get out and push at one point (sorry, there's probably a proper canoeing term for this). I think it was Tony (Sue's husband) who told me that he'd done Santon to Thetford recently and that the water depth improved slightly above Santon. Maybe it's something I'll try again when I'm less sensitive about scratching the boat and/or there's been a major rainfall.

    Al

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    very soon to be norfolk
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    The road bridge at santon does get shallow at times - but when it's deep enough, there is a big bit of current to paddle against. That is one of the few local places to me where when the water level is right, you get real eddies. Above there, the water level is usually much better - but water weed might slow your progress in summer.
    Sam

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Yorkshire
    Posts
    37

    Default River Blackbourne or Black Bourne

    Thanks Al, that will be useful. As a young teenager living at Honington back in the '60s, we used to fish the river regularly and a great little river it was. The stretch between Fakenham Magna and County Hole, to the north west of Euston village, where it joins the Little Ouse, was certainly deep enough for canoes. In fact a half mile section in front of the Duke of Grafton's pile at Euston (I think that was the peer's title) was positively huge - I think it had been artificially widened, back when the estate was constructed.

    Looking at Google Earth however I suspect that the river sections around Ixworth, Bardwell, Honington and Sapiston are no longer navigable - but I wait to hear from you. Thanks.

    Lee

  8. #8

    Default

    Just paddled from Brandon to Thetford. A lot of fallen trees and heavly weeded. Good flow and depth apart from a bit shallow at Stanton Bridge. Quite and effort

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