Event Info – River Safety


Kayaking and canoeing are assumed risk sports, While ALL participants in this event are responsible for their own individual and group safety, group leaders have a duty of care to those paddling with them.

• Alcohol should not be consumed whilst paddling, those that ignore this will have items confiscated by marshals and reported to the Tyne Tour organisers

• Ask for information regarding river levels and hazards

• Remember the river level can change rapidly and this WILL affect your group risk assessment

A team of experienced paddlers will be based on Warden Gorge to provide advice and assistance. The presence of safety cover on the Gorge does not replace your own group control and safety measures.

As this is a Site of Special Scientific Interest, access and portages are restricted. Novice paddlers should NOT attempt this section and should egress at Barrasford. We will monitor this and reserve the right to take action against organised groups that disregard this warning.

All paddlers considering paddling water over grade 2 must be experienced and able to paddle to that standard and understand current rescue techniques. Inspect Barrasford Rapid, (river left) as this is a fast flowing, narrow and shallow shoot with large boulders in the main flow.

There is a high possibility of getting pinned. This is not advisable for Novice or Open boats. Look out for the warning signs. Ensure that you are properly equipped following BCU recommendations with correctly fitted CE marked buoyancy aids and helmets on All rivers and All disciplines.

Use canoes or kayaks with proper buoyancy and grab handles and take a throw line. Open canoes attempting Warden Gorge must have enough buoyancy to float the canoe safely if capsized. Carry a first aid kit, split paddles, survival bags and any other safety equipment and know how to use it!

Do not depend on other paddlers for your group’s safety. Please ensure that the Stewards at the Information point are advised of any incidents as soon as possible.

On the Saturday the Tyne Descent Race will pass through Warden Gorge between 11am and 1.30pm. Please give way to competitors,  they will be wearing bibs.

Be aware that darkness falls at about 4pm. Please use your own judgment and be off the river Before dark.

Do not set off unless your journey will end before night fall.

In the Event of a SwimSwim

• Stay calm and listen to instructions

• Let go of your boat and paddle

• Lift your feet and raise your arms for the throw line

• Grab the rope and hold it across your chest

• Roll onto your back

• Follow instructions for safe egress.

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