Important: You must notify us of any changes of plans you make for your overnight stop, so that a Rescue Search is not put into place on the grounds that you haven’t reached your original destination.
Hoarwithy to Ross, Day 1
The picturesque little village of Hoarwithy is the start point for your 3 day adventure. You launch from the highly recommended Tresseck Park Campsite which is a 20 minute drive from our base at Symonds Yat, the 12 mile paddle to Ross is a lovely and peaceful stretch of the river with plenty of wildlife and scenery to enjoy, we advise you though to take a picnic with you as there is no where to stop for lunch on this section, it should take around 4-5 hours to reach Ross and you will know you are getting close when you reach Backney Bridge picnic area (not accessible from the river). Once you reach Ross there are options to either camp at the Rowing Club which you will come to first on river left or maybe camp or take advantage of the B&B facilities at both the The Hope and Anchor or White Lion Pubs, we would certainly recommend that you contact and arrange your accommodation in advance of your trip as wild camping is strictly forbidden along the Wye.
On the paddle down look out for:
- The Sellack suspension footbridge is the first bridge you pass under on your way down river from Hoarwithy.
- There are two demolished railway bridges which are the remains of the old Hereford to Gloucester Railway Line demolished in the 1960′s under the Beeching Act.
After leaving the historic market town of Ross (pic) you will pass under Wilton Bridge and follow the Wye as it meanders down through rolling countryside until you see Goodrich Castle high up on a hill, this will indicate that you have about 30 minutes before you reach Kerne Bridge and your first option for lunch.
On the paddle down look out for:
- Goodrich Castle, a ruined 12th Century Castle that overlooks the river.
- Kerne Bridge, a 3-arch stone bridge spanning the river.
- The remains of another old railway bridge.
After passing under the 3-arch stone bridge of Kerne Bridge (pic below) around the corner there is the old abutment of what was a railway bridge and soon after on the left is the landing point for Kerne Bridge. There is accommodation at the Inn on the Wye, so if you wanted to finish your day here its an ideal spot (no camping though).
On the way down river from Kerne Bridge to Symonds Yat you will come to the lovely Lower Lydbrook where you can find group accommodation at the River Wye Lodge and a little further into the village there is The Forge Hammer, or if you are looking for accommodation in the Symonds Yat area then you can either stay in our 9 bed bunkroom (call us for details), or riverside rooms and bunkhouse at Ye Old Ferrie Inn (where we are based), or rooms both catered and self catered at The Old Court, or maybe camp at either River Wye Camping (great for groups) or Sterretts (ideal for families).
Lower Lydbrook will be found just after an island in the centre of the river, paddle to the left of the island keeping the island to your right and you will see the village on your left.
Things to look out for from Kerne Bridge:
- Coppett Hill – on the entrance to the meandering section of the River Wye there is the beautiful heather clad Coppett Hill on your right. We can provide a lovely guided walk along Coppett Hill which will show you the route of the river through the gorge as it winds around the hill itself.
- After Lower Lydbrook you will pass the Youth Hostel in Welsh Bicknor a lovely old building and the church beside it. For those who are doing this trip in two days, this is a great place to camp or bunk overnight to break up the long trip.
- Another disused railway bridge, now used as a footbridge.
- As you meander through the Wye Valley Gorge the river bends back around a right hand bend and you will pass Coldwell Rocks famous for the nesting Peregrine falcons and Symonds Yat Rock the view point high above you on the left.
- Now you have looped around and you are paddling the other side of Coppett Hill, you will go under Huntsham Bridge, a green iron road bridge.
- You are entering Symonds Yat area when you see the old parish church of St Dubricius on your right hand side.
- Your landing point is the wide steps in front of Ye Old Ferrie Inn, which has an original hand ferry to cross the river.
We think that this is probably one of the finest sections on the whole river and the first thing you will notice at the start of your final day are the fun rapids about 15 minutes after (pic) you leave the Ferrie Inn area, we give you helmets and a further short briefing for safety before you go through the rapids and should you be nervous about running the rapids you can either portage them or we can raft boats together for additional stability but they are great fun.
After the rapids you will be the carboniferous gorge with steep cliffs on either side and paddle past Biblins Youth Campsite and under the suspension bridge, then past the Seven Sister viewpoint and Hadnock Island and into Wales.
You are just 30 minutes from Monmouth where should you want to you can end your trip but we always advise people if they can to carry on past Monmouth and to continue down river through spectacular scenery and back into England to finish at either Redbrook or Whitebrook.
After the rapids there are a number of places of interest to spot:
- Biblins foot bridge a suspended iron foot bridge linking the walk from Symonds Yat East to Biblins campsite on the West side of the river to the Wye Valley Walk.
- Past Biblins the river carves it’s way through carboniferous limestone and the Seven Sisters Rocks, plus there are a number or caves on the right hand side of the river including King Arthur’s Cave.
- Wyastone Estate – home of Nimbus records, this gothic mansion estate can be seen from the river on the right hand side with its Concert Hall and Business Park.
Once you reach Monmouth the landing area is the second set of steps on the right hand side, not the steps in front of the Rowing Club, do not use the steps on the left hand side of the river before the bridge either, these are for Monmouth School only.
The town is about 10 minutes walk if you wish to take a break and walk into town, but remember to leave someone to look after your canoeing kit and the boats.
Paddle under the large multi-arched Wye Bridge at Monmouth and down back into the gorge and through a fantastic little section with plenty of little rapids and beautiful scenery and wildlife.
After the bridge look out for the following on your journey down to Redbrook:
- On your right you will see the River Monnow joining the River Wye.
- Another two disused railway bridges
- There are a large number of big boulders in the river here, take care going around them.
- Old iron disused railway bridge is just before the exit point for Redbrook.
The Boat is on the right hand side of the river just past the bridge, the landing point is on the left hand side of the river opposite, the Boat Inn can then be accessed by using the footpath that goes across the bridge.
If you are paddling on down from Redbrook you continue to follow the river until you reach either Whitebrook (3 miles) or Brockweir Bridge (7.5 miles and last self guided finish point):
- 1. There is an option of a get out at Whitebrook a further 3 miles down river rather than paddling on to Brockweir to make the trip from Symonds Yat a little longer, Contact Us for details.
- 2. Bigsweir Bridge an old wrought iron archway bridge, taking the A466 across the river so it will now be following the river on your right. This was originally a toll bridge and you can see the toll house on your right at the end of the bridge.
- 3. Brockweir Bridge (pic) – a large flat iron bridge.
- 4. The landing point is just to the left before the bridge.
- NB. The get out at Brockweir is not accessible for trailers and as such not suitable for more than 2 boats, unless you are willing to carry your boats across bridge to main road for collection.