In another Club first (for many years, anyway), four of our paddlers drove north for the weekend to paddle the mighty Afon Tryweryn on Sat 10 Sep. On arrival in Bala we positioned cars ready for a shuttle then Dave, Ele, Pete and Steve tackled the river trip from Ty Cornel campsite in Frongoch to Bala town. Mostly grade 2-3 – feeling like pinball wizards as we dodged rock after rock – but with the Grade 4 Bala Mill Falls as a sting in the tail, which turned out to have no bite as we all tackled it successfully (albeit with some judicious support strokes from Dave!). Some shots of us below from Bala Mill Falls, thanks to Matthew Collier!
We then travelled up-river for a couple of runs down the slalom course sections at Canolfan Tryweryn, making most of the Grade 3 rapids look easy (!): we passed the Graveyard without incident; Pete treated us (and a large audience!) to some great surfing as he got stuck in the Ski Slope stopper; Fedwrgog Falls (aka Mrs Davies’ bridge) claimed no victims; and Café Wave failed to entice us in to play (we were too embarrassed to screw things up in front of all the diners!). On our second run we carried on through HRA Wave and Chapel Falls to arrive buzzing but tired at the campsite, where the three men set up tents while Ele elected to drive home for a rest (and to feed the chickens!). After a pub meal and a good(ish) night’s sleep, Sunday morning saw Dave, Pete and Steve drive east to tackle the might Llangollen Canal (a warm-up work-out!) followed by a descent of the Dee from Horseshoe Falls to Llangollen town. We all survived the Serpents’ Tail (although Dave tested his roll just for fun at the bottom) and the Mile End Mill weirs and waves; and to finish off the trip Dave and Steve decided to watch Pete run the Grade 4 Town Falls rather than risk embarrassing themselves in front of yet another audience – but he made it look easy as the video shows! All-in-all, a great weekend with some fabulous paddling and great company. Roll-on next time!