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Owenfeanna River


             
  Grade:   3 to 4       Rating: river rating
  County:   Kerry   Date updated:04/01/2012
  Section Length:   2 KM   Version: 2 (History)
             

Brief River Description

The river is high gradient, fast, consistent and at some points a bit rocky. We ran from the unfinished house down to the bridge which is close to 2km and we only caught a hand full of eddies. The upper section has a number of very fun grade 4+ drops. We ran from the pool just about 50m above the half built house but even from here we could see about 3 or 4 good rapids only a few minutes up.

The first three rapids we encountered are all within that 50m up from the house and all very scoutable on the walk in. The first is a grade 3 warm up around a few rocks and holes. Next on is a 2m slide which bends off a wall at the bottom. There was a sizable boily pillow against the wall. We treated the wall as undercut at avoided it but I canít confirm that. The third rapid was two slots. The right one looks deep and hard to see from the bank but the left slot is very runable. Its hugs the bank and just requires a small boof over the hole below it.

The rest of the river down to the bridge is pretty much read and run but it is very continuous. The only eddies are micro eddies and the water between any bits of sections is moderate to fast moving and very short. There is one more notable slide a few hundred meters from the bridge. It can be scouted as there is a micro eddy against the bank on the left where the field comes down to meet the water and there are two or three trees on the edge. Flow starts off on the left through a small hole and then you need to get sharply right upstream of a big rock in the middle and then down the slide.

There is much more to this river than what we did. There are the sections above where we got on and it is probably possible to paddle the whole way down to the beach in Brandon which in total could probably add another kilometre or more.

If anyone has paddled this could they let me know, we had never heard of the run until we were scoping over an OS map of the area because we were drunk and looking to paddle the next day over new years. Itís well worth a run with water on it and could be run a number of times in a day.


Directions to the Put-in

The river flows into Brandon on the north side of the Dingle Peninsula. If youíre coming from Cloghane keep going straight towards Brandon on the R550. After you cross the bridge with the sign ĎAn Tirí engraved in a stone, there is a right hand bend with a left turn which goes almost straight. Follow that left and up the hill. This road leads up the hill almost parallel to the river at one point the road splits but takes the left. You canít see the river as itís stuck down in the valley but its there. Keep going up as far as you can or want to. Looking at the map of the road will show where the road brings you closest to the river. Just park up and get on where ever you want or can.

When we did it we parked almost in the drive of a house up on the left of the road. From there, walk up the road about 25m and there is a gate and a stone and rock covered path down to what appears to be a half built house. The river is just behind that Ė if its running, Iíd imagine youíll hear it. There is a pool just upstream from this where we got on but the river has much more above this that all looks runable.

Definitely more to be ran than what we got done.

Dave g's comment: Myself and a few Belgian paddlers ran this xmas 04 in huge water. We drove all the way to the top of the mountain, through the farmyard and parked on the common land at the top.Hiked down to river (A la Gaddagh) This adds about1!km more of slide type rapids. The flows we had meant very sticky holes but at saner levels they should be sweet. We too portaged slide as does seem undercut.

Directions to the Take-out

Either at the bridge at the bottom or down closer the beach if you drive into Brandon.

River Description

The river is high gradient, fast, consistent and at some points a bit rocky. We ran from the unfinished house down to the bridge which is close to 2km and we only caught a hand full of eddies. The upper section has a number of very fun grade 4+ drops. We ran from the pool just about 50m above the half built house but even from here we could see about 3 or 4 good rapids only a few minutes up.

The first three rapids we encountered are all within that 50m up from the house and all very scoutable on the walk in. The first is a grade 3 warm up around a few rocks and holes. Next on is a 2m slide which bends off a wall at the bottom. There was a sizable boily pillow against the wall. We treated the wall as undercut at avoided it but I canít confirm that. The third rapid was two slots. The right one looks deep and hard to see from the bank but the left slot is very runable. Its hugs the bank and just requires a small boof over the hole below it.

The rest of the river down to the bridge is pretty much read and run but it is very continuous. The only eddies are micro eddies and the water between any bits of sections is moderate to fast moving and very short. There is one more notable slide a few hundred meters from the bridge. It can be scouted as there is a micro eddy against the bank on the left where the field comes down to meet the water and there are two or three trees on the edge. Flow starts off on the left through a small hole and then you need to get sharply right upstream of a big rock in the middle and then down the slide.

There is much more to this river than what we did. There are the sections above where we got on and it is probably possible to paddle the whole way down to the beach in Brandon which in total could probably add another kilometre or more.

If anyone has paddled this could they let me know, we had never heard of the run until we were scoping over an OS map of the area because we were drunk and looking to paddle the next day over new years. Itís well worth a run with water on it and could be run a number of times in a day.

Local issues

None that I know of. Parking at the get on is on a narrow road so respect the locals up there and try and keep in.

River level gauge

It's hard to know unless you walk down to it at the get on I think.

River Hazards

It's very continuous so a swim could end up being long and sore and not all of it is readily scoutable as eddies to get out are few and far between.

The further up the river, the bigger the rapids are and I haven't run them all above the house so inspect for yourselves.


Author(s)

Original Author: Conor Bredin
Latest Author: Dave G
(Full History)


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