Described as England’s shortest river at just 2.5km in length, the River Bain is a popular spot for those looking to start out on some white water.
The river is classed as grade 0 at the top, meaning it is a flat paddle to start out. However by the end become a grade 3 with a stopper towards the end under the bridge to look out for.
It starts as an idyllic flat paddle with willows lining the banks and water-lilies in the eddies. It’s not an obvious whitewater venue, but the river starts to head downhill and cascades with increasing speed over a rocky bed.
Visibility ahead is limited by overhanging branches, and eddies are small, but not in short supply. The water is not powerful but is swift.
The River Bain then widens with a series of ledge drops visible from Bainbridge. This all funnels down to a drop under the bridge. There is a wide pool and a beach to the take-out river right at the end of the river.
Rapids at Bainbridge create powerful stoppers. These occur when water pours over the top of a submerged object, or underwater ledges, causing the surface water to flow back upstream toward the object.
These stoppers should be scouted in advance. This can be done from the road in advance. Learn about white water river gradings here.