Canoeing and Kayaking on : River Brathay

Paddle Point

Short section that can be added to the main run on the River Brathay, or a very short but reliable trip in any water levels.

We paddled this section in major flood (most fields upstream of the get in were submerged by several feet of water). A large pay wave formed under the bridge at the get in, and the rest of the run was full of big waves and big trees. A short rapid / wave train just after the get in got the pulse racing, with a river left line being most exciting, but after that it was just a case of staying out of the trees.

If you were looking for a short and very scenic river trip that anyone could manage, this is probably it (assuming the level isn't in the trees).

Paddle Point

Access point which can be used as either an egress for paddling the river Brathay, or access for a short (but very pleasant) paddle to Ambleside.

A number of laybys along this stretch provide free parking for up to a couple of vehicles.

Water access is gained by walking towards the footbridge signposted for the church, and turning left immediately before the bridge. In low water a nice beach makes an easy access point, in high water a large eddy forms here.

Paddle Point

Technically this is on Great Langdale Beck, but it makes a logical start for the Brathay which flows out of Elterwater itself.

Put in easily down rocks from the National Trust car park next to the bridge.

Paddle Point

Grade V waterfall which can be lethal, but is paddled.

This is out of character with the rest of this G1-3 river. Portage along paths, either getting our river left above the bridge at the gorge entrance, or river right immediately after the bridge, a few eddies upstream of the falls! Don't miss...

Put ins below the falls - steep but obvious river left, easier for kayaks, further but less steep river right, better for open canoes. Both are about 100m below falls.

Paddle Point

Probably Grade 2, maybe 3 on occasion. Boney rock gardens in low water.

Paddle Point

Grade 1 to 2 rapids between stone bridge leading to church, and the road bridge at Clappersgate. There's a little one by the church bridge, a slightly more involved drop above Brathay pool, and then a run round the side of an island to the road bridge.

Paddle Point

An interesting and very beautiful paddle with a mix of grade 1 to 2(3) river paddling, a portage round a G5 waterfall, and a lake paddle to finish. On the still sections, the views of the Lakeland fells are fabulous.

This would be suitable for beginners to moving water if led by experienced paddlers, but the portage is quite physical. Rocky in low water.

The route is plotted as if staying at Low Wray campsite, but if not you can finish at Ambleside.