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Canoeing Trip - River Tweed

Open canoeing following the River Tweed - Scottish Borders

About the Trip

This is an entirely self-sufficient river trip, and we generally camp out for the two nights, cooking on open fires. If your group would like a slightly more luxurious trip, we can generally use hotel accommodation [for an extra charge]. We aim to paddle well over half the length of the river over the three days, although groups who would like to concentrate on coaching will cover less ground. The minimum group size is 4 clients.

About the River

The Tweed (Uisge Thuaidh in Gaelic) is the second longest river in Scotland and takes great pride in the fact that it produces more fish caught to the fly than any other river in Britain. It is 96 miles [155km] long and gains life at Tweed's Well in the Lowther Hills from a staggering 1840 square miles (4843 square km) of upland border catchment area. This huge area ensures that the river runs at a good water level through most of the year.

Although regarded as a Scottish river, only the first 75 miles are purely Scottish. The next 19 miles from Carham to Paxton, are shared, with the south bank of the river being English. For its final 4 mile journey to the sea from Paxton to Berwick-upon-Tweed, the river flows entirely English territory - a consequence of Berwick-upon-Tweed being taken by the English in 1482

Start / Finish: The river is usable from Peebles [water level permitting] to Berwick-upon-Tweed, a distance of around 90 miles / 150km

Day one

Is a gentle introduction to the river, and we will cover the basics of safe river running, depending on the groups experience. For those who have chosen the 'camping' option we will also introduce the basics of camp-craft, cooking on open fires and setting up the shelters. Although the instructors will take a lead role, it will be all hands on deck

Day two

As we carry on down the river, we will encounter some larger, more complex rapids, which will put your skills to the test! The instructors will be providing safety cover and on going coaching to continuously improve the groups paddling skills. 

Day three

This, the final day of the trip will take in some of most spectacular scenery of the trip. Although the instructors will still be on-hand providing safety cover, it is expected that the group will be almost entirely self-sufficient by this point

Level of Difficulty / Fitness Requirements

The River Tweed is mainly grade II water, with some grade III [which may be missed out if required]. As this is a multi day trip, a reasonable level of fitness is required to fully enjoy the trip - however, as we only use high quality modern boats, they are extremely light, and handle very well. Before running any rapids, a comprehensive briefing will be given by your instructor, who will never be far away. The only requirement is to be confident in water; an ability to swim is not essential, as you will be wearing a buoyancy aid.

Interesting facts

As the principal river of the Scottish Borders it flows past many famous localities such as Scott's View and the home of Sir Walter Scott at Abbotsford, together with several other country seats and the ancient abbeys of Dryburgh, Kelso and Melrose. King Arthur himself was said to have been buried in the Eildon Hills above Melrose, and Robert the Bruce's heart was buried in Melrose Abbey

Along the length of this majestic river are many towns, originally appearing to serve the emerging Scottish textile industry in the 18th century, as many of the early mills were powered by the Tweed.

Prices per person

Lake District - Canoe / Kayak Taster         1/2 or full day      £40 / £60

Lake District - River Trip                           1/2 or full day      £40 / £60

River Tweed - Canoe Trip                         3 days                 £240.00