Kayaking what you need to know

Kayaking is a wonderful way to spend your time at Holiday Cottages Noss Mayo. There are two kayaks at Anchor Cottage that are ideal for seeing more of Noss Mayo and Newton Ferrers from the water. You can use them just to nip you to one of the three great local pubs – The Swan, The Ship or The Dolphin – or head down to the sea or back up the Yealm.

How kayaking works

I prefer kayaking to canoeing because you sit on it rather than in it which makes getting on and off much easier. It sits low to the water and you sit forward with your legs outstretched using the footrests to push against for balance. You then use the double-bladed paddles to propel yourself along the river.

Is kayaking hard?

Kayaking at Anchor Cottage is very low effort, the kayaks are ready for you in the garage. You simply have to take them onto the shared private slipway and put them in the water. I would wear something on your feet, even flip-flops are good, as there are oysters on the riverbed and their shells can be very sharp. Make sure the kayak is stable and then get onboard, don’t worry if your first attempt isn’t very elegant, it gets easier with practice. The water is nice and shallow even at high tide, you can see our dog Mabel’s first kayaking attempt here. You’ll soon be zinging along like a pro.

Are there any fees for using a kayak on the Yealm?

The kayaks at Anchor Cottage are registered so are free to use but if you are using your own kayaks you will need to pay a £20 fee to the Yealm Harbour Authority per kayak/paddleboard but this will last for the whole season and goes towards the really important work that they do in keeping the river fit for everyone to use.

Does the tide make a difference?

You’ll only be able to get into the river from the slipway 2 to 3 hours either side of the high tide, you’ll find the tide timetable on the bookcase in the dining room. If you just to try it out and get your water wings then anytime within the the 4-6 hours of high tide will be fine. If you want to get out to The Yealm or the sea then you’ll need to give yourself enough time to get there and back, we had some guests who had to moor the kayak at the Yacht Club for a night, but it made for a very funny holiday memory.

Kayaking from Anchor Cottage

You can pop a packed lunch into a bag and pop it in the storage box in the red kayak and head off down Newton Creek soaking in the sunshine and views. You’ll see St. Peter’s Church perched on the hill in Noss Mayo and as you head down you’ll pass Bridgend Quay.

Follow the river down past The Dolphin Inn in Newton Ferrers, you can moor up to get your provisions, there’s a community run store & Post Office as well as a tiny Co-op, before carrying on down to the Town Quay.

Kayaking on The River Yealm

If you turn right at the end of the Creek you can join The Yealm and paddle in between the yachts – they start getting very impressive at this part of the river – heading smoothly along enjoying the sights and sounds of the water. Sometimes it’s nice to just cruise this part, listening to the masts jangle in the breeze, getting some vitamin D into your body.

Then just head down until you find a little beach that takes your fancy, pull up, jump in and then dry off whilst tucking into your lunch. A very simple pleasure, but one you’ll remember for months if not years.

Safety and further Information

If you are heading out from Anchor Cottage you will need to check the tides. There is a tide timetable on the bookcase or you can download an app, I use the Tides Near Me one which is useful and free android or apple.

You’ll have around 2 hours either side of the high tide so if you want to do a longer journey that will give you 4 hours, plenty to get out to the sea or up the Yealm.

The River Yealm Harbour have a very useful map – you’ll also find a copy in Anchor Cottage – of the pontoons and public landing beaches. Do bear in mind that you do not have to pay harbour fees if you are entering the river from the private slipway at Anchor Cottage. If you want to gain access at low tide from Newton Ferrers Town Quay you will need to speak to the Harbour Office. Details can be found here.