7. Gorge Walking

BaseCamp Adventure 7: Family Gorge Walking

Our 25 basecamp Adventures Project includes many adventures we did for our first book 100 Family Adventures when we were all a few years younger. We wanted to revisit some of them in order to enjoy them again, of course, but also to experience them at a slighter more adventurous level now that the girls are older.

What is gorge walking?

One of the activities we had as one of our favourites was Gorge Walking (or gill scrambling depending where you are). The basic idea is to scramble up or down a flowing river as it travels down steep terrain where the water is quite shallow, but fast flowing. It can involve jumps into plunge pools, rides down natural flume sections and climbs and abseils. Oh, and quite often you are partially (or fully) submerged in cold – no wait, very cold – water.

So, as you can imagine, the combination of adventure, adrenalin and water temperature makes for a thrilling experience.

Managing the risks

It’s worth saying at this point, that – for obvious reasons – there are some risks involved with kind of activity: slippery rocks, deep fast flowing water etc This means you ought to either have all the kit and local knowledge to your own scramble safely, or you go with an experienced activity provider. We did the latter and went with Canyon Wales. Not only did this ensure we were all kitted up in high-quality wetsuits, dry socks, harnesses, buoyancy aids and helmets, it also meant we were in the hands of someone with great experience of the landscape and water conditions. This meant we felt as safe as we possibly could (given the nature of the activity). It just so happened that Tom – founder of Canyon Wales – was great fun and brilliant with the younger members of the group – an added bonus.

The trip itself was fantastic fun and as good – if not better – than we had hoped. It was a beautiful day and the scenery was – dare I say it – ‘gorge-ous.’ (sorry). Rather than describe things in words, the following pictures will probably do a better job.


Don’t just look at the photos! Here’s a film we made of our gorge walking fun:

So good, we want more!

So, that’s gorge walking ticked off, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we find ourselves doing it again – particularly if we are in Snowdonia and Tom has a few spaces we can book!

For more information about Swift's Basecemap, visit: swiftbasecamp.co.uk
When in N.Wales, visit: http://canyonwales.co.uk/