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Binley Ring: River Aire & Leeds Liverpool Canal

Be surprised at the picturesque industrial landscape of this part of the Aire Valley. The trip is one of contrasts from the moving water of the Aire to the placid waters of the Leeds Liverpool Canal.

Please have a look at River_Aire.pdf on for more details.

Points of interest

  • A - A good launching point is approx. 20ft upstream from the metal gantry. Immediately encounter Bingley Weir. if there is enough water you can shoot this to the far right. If not, then carry over. A stopper with a long tow back develops at the weir base in high water. Always check the weir before you get on.
  • B - Once past the weir the river narrowsand becomes more picturesque. Beware of low hanging trees.
  • C - The best course is down the centre of the river. At Myrtly Park be aware of the height of the metal bridge if the river level is high.
  • D - At 0.7 miles, Harden Beck joins from the right. There is an island in the centre of the river which should be passed on the right hand side. Look out for rocks here at low water.
  • E - 1.3 miles into your journey you will reach Cottingley Bridge. A quarter of a mile beyond here is a shingle bank. The current flows sharply to the left and under some trees - take care here, it is potentially dangerous.
  • F - After Hirst Wood Railway Bridge, at 2.3 miles, the river swings to the left and an eddy on the right enables an inspection of the water ahead. Check the broken weir and stepping stones before deciding how to proceed. Rocks lie below the surface.
  • G - Just after the rapids the Seven Arches Aqueduct can be seen. Land on the right hand bank just after the small shingle bank on the left, well upstream of the aqueduct and preferably before the sewage works.
  • H - A track takes you to a small footbridge over a stream and onto the aqueduct. Put onto the Leeds Liverpool Canal here. The cruise along the canal is the most tranquil part of your journey and takes a more direct route than the river.
  • I - Your only obstacle is Dowley Gap Locks, less than 1/4 mile from the aqueduct. Portage to the left.
  • J - Paddling down the canal, the scenery gradually becomes more industrial as the centre of Bingley is approached.
  • K - Finish your journey at Bingley 3 Rise Locks. Get out on your left and carry your boat over the footbridge towards the A650. It is a 5-10 min walk back to your start point near the Brown Cow.

Beeston Weir to Holme Pierrepont - Spooky Canoe Trail

Do you dare take on this spine tingling tour and meet the ghosts of Nottinghamshire?! From Beeston to Holme Pierrepont (and back if you feel brave) you are sure to stir spirits from the murky depths of the river.

Please have a look at Spooky-Beeston-Holme-Pierrepont.pdf on for more details.

Points of interest

  • A - Put in at Beeston Weir - there is a concrete slipway with access to the beach which provides a suitable put in point.
  • B - As you start to paddle, look up to your right and spot imposing Clifton Hall. The last owner sold it in a hurry, having been hounded out by angry phantoms. If you see sturgeon swimming upstream here a death at the hall is said to be imminent!
  • C - Look out for the WIlford Ferry pub, on your right beyond the Toll Bridge. Here, a poltergeist was exorcised; perhaps the remaining spirit of ex-landlord and famous sportsman Albert Iremonger?
  • D - As you escape these fiendish friends move on along the river, to your next encounter. The Toll Bridge now carries the tram line but you may still spot a man dressed in blue standing on the bridge. He was once the toll collector here.
  • E - Paddle on fast towards Trent Bridge. Are you alone here? A phantom canoeist has been seen to pass under the bridge and disappear. Look up! Do you see a ghostly jogger, or an ethereal man dressed in green peering down at you? They have both been spotted here before.
  • F - Paddle on under Lady Bay bridge and towards the finish. To your left as the trail ends, you will see the edges of Colwick Park. The park may look packed with people but are you sure all those you see are real? Could that woman amongst the trees be Mrs Chaworth Musters, Lord Byrons first love? She still hides from marauders there. And those children, why are they sad? Aren't they the poor mites murdered by their father, William Saville, in 1844?
  • G - Finish at the National Water Sports Centre - there is a concrete beach after the sailing club which provides an excellent spot for easy access to the car park.


Beaulieu River: Bucklers Hard to Lepe Beach Canoe Trail

The Beaulieu is a wonderfully attractive, tidal river tucked away in the New Forest Park. This trail is for the more experienced paddler.
Note: This is a tidal trail. Check tide times befor you set out. The harbour master will provide you wit a map and tide table when you pay your launch fee.

Please have a look at Beaulieu_to_Lepe_Beach.pdf on for more details.

Points of interest

  • A - Setting off from Bucklers Hard, turn right, down the river. You pass salt pans and various historic boat building ares. Take care especially around the Harbour and stay our of the main channel in so far as possible.
  • B - On your right after about 2km, is the base for the Royal Southampton Yacht Club- Ginn's Farm.
  • C - After the next stretch you reach Needs Ore Point, home of Beaulieu River Sailing club. The river then tracks to the left, down towards Lepe Beach. You will notice the MIllennium Beacon on your left, which helps guide boats on and off the river.
  • D - Pass Gull Island, a spit, home to a colony of black headed gulls and other rare birds. Do not land here, this is a highly sensitive conservation area.
  • E - Reach Lepe Beach, on your left, as you exit the river. At low tide Lepe can be very muddy. Lepe Beach has great views over to the Isle of Wight.
  • F - Rest and explore at Lepe Beach before heading back to your start point at Bucklers Hard.

Basingstoke Canal; Crookham to Barley Mow

This lock free, rural section of canal offers a peaceful day out and is perfect as an introduction to canoe trails. The route is described as out and back but could be done one way, with a shuttle.

Please have a look at Basingstoke-Canal-Crookham-to-Barley-Mow.pdf on for more details.


A- A vistior information board, by the bridge, provides navigation and canal information. Put in and turn right, away from the bridge. 
B - After a mile the minor road from Dogmersfield to the north crosses the canal at Double Bridge and 200m further on is Blacksmith's Bridge.
C - A few minutes later you will see Tundry Pond on your left. This is a feeder pond for the canal.
D - After the pond the left bank is continuously wooded and very pretty. You may spot the attractive houses of Dogmersfield village amongst the trees.
E - At around 2,5 miles the canal bends steadily round to the left and here you will see the Barley Mow slipway on your right.
F - The Barley Mow is on the opposite side of the road from the car park. This is your turning point for an out and back trip.


Basingstoke Canal; Barley Mow to Odiham

Enjoy a peaceful day out in the natural environment, on this very rural and attractive lock free section of canal. For cyclists and walkers there is a continuous tow

Please have a look at Basingstoke-Canal-Barley-Mow-to-Odiham.pdf on for more details.

Points of interest

  • A - Launch and turn right towards Odiham, going under the adjacent Barley Mow Bridge.
  • B - After passing under two bridges in the first mile, Sprat's Harch Footbridge is reached. This is a crossing point for the Three Castles Footpath.
  • C - For the following mile or so you will pass under Sandy Hill and Borad Oak bridges. Once you go under the A287 you will see a cruiser hire centre on your right.
  • E - A right hand turn then brings Colt Hill Bridge and Odiham Wharf into view with a public landing, car park and picnic benches on the right. The Water Witch pub, on the left, is gained by going over the bridge from the car park.
  • F - Follow the straight route of the canal for just under one mile; there can be some summer weed growth in this section. Thereafter a sharp left turn, winds the waterway through North Warnborough and under the B3349.
  • G - Within a few hundred yards a lift bridge is encountered. It is quite feasible go under this. Paddling further on for a few minutes you will arrive at the ruins of Odiham Castle on the right. This is an interesting place to stop for a break before turning back as this is effectively the end of the navigable section of the canal.
  • H - Boaters are requested not to proceed beyond the adjacent viaduct over the River Whitewater as the area that leads up to the entrance of Greywell Tunnel is a conservation area.


Basingstoke Canal, Ash Lock to Reading Road Wharf Canoe Trail

Enjoy a day out on this attractive, lock free section of canal, surrounded by wooded heathland. This trail can be taken on as a one way or out and back paddle.

Please have a look at Basingstoke-Canal-Ash-Lock-to-Reading-Road-Wharf.pdf on for more details.

Points of interest

  • F - Launch from the low bank above the lock and right towards Fleet. Before launching check the visitor information board on site, this shows a map of your route towards Fleet. Keeping track of the number of bridge crossings you pass is a handy guide to your progress.
  • G - Along the route you will pass 'flashes'. These are designated nature reserves, off to the side of the waterway and boats are requested to keep out.
  • H - Following the canal for 3 miles, you will come to your fifth bridge; Eelmoor Bridge. This is a good place for a break and if you get out and walk to the road you can get a good view of Farnborough airfield.
  • I - Just under a mile further is Norris Bridge, a high concrete structure. To your right is the National Gas Turbine Establishment.
  • J - After Norris Bridge the canal veers in a westerly direction for 3/4 mile before passing under Pondtail Bridge. You are now entering the outskirts of Fleet.
  • K - A further mile brings you to the end or turning point of your route; Reading Road Bridge.



Ashby Canal; Hinckley to Sutton Cheney Wharf

Have an adventure on this trail, which is also known as the Ashby de la Zouch canal, as the waterway weaves it way through a mostly agricultural backdrop.

Please have a look at Ashby_WEB.pdf on for more details.

Points of interest

  • A: Put in near the pub and turn right, away from the A5 road bridge.
    You are heading through the outskirts of Hinckley.
  • B: After half a mile there is a branch in the canal. Keep left under the bridge.
  • C: After one mile pass Trinity Marina on your right, where there is also a Brewers Fayre pub.
  • D: Another quarter of a mile brings you under the A47 raad bridge, em erging from the bridge you will see the Triumph motorcycle factory on your right.
  • E: Follow the canal, through peaceful countryside, past moored barges and under bridges.
  • F: As you go under Sutton Wharf Bridge (no. 34), Sutton Cheney Wharf comes into view and this marks the end of your six mile paddle.


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