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want to canoe?

River Respect

Read the @wantocanoe Countryside and River Code of Conduct – please click here.

Read the official Countryside Code here – click here.

To read the want to canoe? Rules and Regulations, please ​click here.

To read the want to canoe? Covid-19 Operating Procedures – for our clients, please click here

Before you canoe, we need everyone to fill out a medical consent and safety and risk declaration form. For individuals this can be completed here, or for families and family groups here.

For our full Booking Terms & Conditions, please ​click here but here is a summary of the general rules and guidelines.

  • Under 18s: We are legally obliged to ensure that everyone under the age of 18 is accompanied by a parent or guardian when canoeing the Wye.
  • The River Wye is not just for canoes, so please keep well away from fishermen and their lines as you canoe downstream – you don’t want to come between a fisherman and his catch!
  • Fishing is not permitted anywhere on the River Wye without an appropriate licence and permit. If you want to fish, click here​ for details.
  • Please be as quiet as possible whilst canoeing the Wye! If you are noisy you will disturb the wildlife and spoil the enjoyment of other river users.
  • We love dogs! Dogs are welcome in the countryside as long as they are kept under control and not allowed to run across fields or disturb farm stock or wildlife. ​ We welcome your well behaved dog as long as you can ensure they remain in the canoe at all times, cause no disturbance to other river users, landowners and wildlife and as long as you are sure they will not compromise the safety of you and your fellow paddlers.
  • Remember the ​ ‘Countryside Code’​ and either take your rubbish home with you or bring it back to base and we will dispose of it for you. Whatever you do, ​ do not ​ leave it on the river bank or in the river! We know you’d never dream of doing that though…
  • Wear clothes you don’t mind getting wet in together with old trainers, sandals or ‘crocs’. Wellington Boots can be dangerous as they easily fill with water so please don’t wear them when canoeing.
  • The River Wye, like most rivers, is absolutely ​ full ​ of water. Don’t forget to bring a change of clothing in case you get wet, especially if you have a long drive. Remember: children in wet clothes does not a pleasant car journey make.
  • Despite all the water, you’ll still need to protect yourself and your family from the sun. Remember your hats and sun-cream if it’s going to be sunny.
  • Canoeing can be thirsty work, so keep yourselves fed and refreshed. Even if you’re not planning a picnic, take snacks and drinks to have whilst you canoe the Wye. We will provide you with barrels to keep your consumables in, so no need for a hamper.
  • Last but not least: always respect other river users, from other canoeists to otters – there’s enough river for everyone!

River Safety

  • Alcohol and paddling ​do not mix ​so please wait until after your canoe trip to have that well-earned drink (take water and soft drinks instead).
  • Buoyancy aids must be worn ​at all times​whilst canoeing on the river Wye, even if you’re an Olympic-standard swimmer,
  • Children must never be left in a canoe unattended.
  • Please take a mobile phone with you on your canoeing trip so that you have a means of contact in the unlikely event of an emergency.
  • If you suffer from a medical condition that could potentially be worsened by canoeing, we advise you not to canoe. If in doubt, consult your doctor before making a booking.
  • Parents and guardians have the option of taking their children on the river in canoes that are ‘rafted’. This way there is no fear of capsize. Even so, it is still necessary for parents and guardians to have had some experience in canoeing.
  • For safety reasons, we do not accept solo paddlers. There is no upper limit – the more the merrier!
  • As fun as paddling a canoe along the Wye may be, there is always going to be an element of risk involved. The risks of a river will be magnified if you muck about, so don’t! Remember: horseplay is for horses.

spreading some canoe-love

we #lovewhatwedo and we #lovewherewelive so we like to say thank you in any way we can, here are a few examples of our thank yous . . .
  • canoe club hay-on-wye
in 2016 with support from Go Canoeing we set up a free Canoe Club for our local community.  The club is growing year on year offering regular free canoeing sessions to local children and young people aged 8 upwards plus free taster sessions for all three of our local primary schools throughout the spring/summer canoe season. ‘want to canoe?’ is the main sponsor for the club with support from Hou Canoes and then fundraising covers other costs. From 2016 to the present day funding has been granted by Sport England, Sport Wales, the Hay Fund, Hay Town Council, the Co-op Community Fund and private donations. Canoe Club Hay-on-Wye Facebook
  • thank-you nhs
a very small way that we are able to say thank you to nhs and blue-light workers for their response to the Covid-19 Crisis we are all living through – THANK YOU NHS!
  • mungo – king of hearts

an on-going campaign to buy, install and maintain defibrillators in remote rural locations along the River Wye and beyond in memory of our dear friend Mungo . . . just-giving mungo-king of hearts

. . . to date we’ve installed three defibs on the Wye at Hay, Whitney and Byecross and now we’re onto the next, watch this space!

  • charity donations and prizes 
we offer roughly five canoeing vouchers per year for local charity events like auctions and raffles, for example donating recently to our local primary and secondary schools, Macmillan, St Michael’s Hospice, Hay Sports, Hay Christmas Lights, Clifford Show, Hay Show and Three Cocks Vintage Rally
  • local organisations and causes

aubrey sits on the ‘wye catchment partnership steering committee’ while clare is a former chair and current director of ‘hay and district chamber of commerce’.  Annually we pledge to donate towards and/or support Hay in Bloom, Glasbury Toilets and the Save Hay Library campaign.

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