The coracle has been in use in Wales since the 7th century, and today is used along the Towy River by fishermen angling for salmon and sea trout.
Towy River coracle (cwrwgl), 2009
Built by W. Karl Chattington
This boat was produced for the 2009 Smithsonian Institution Folklife Festival and is provided through the courtesy of the Smithsonian Institution.
The coracle has been in use in Wales since the 7th century. Today, coracles are used along the Towy River in southwest Wales by sport fishermen angling for salmon and sea trout. They are propelled with a paddle held in two hands over the bow, in a figure-8 movement.
Coracles are very light — the hull is painted canvas over wooden strips. When a fisherman came ashore he would simply pick the boat up and, using the leather strap, carry the boat home on his back.
Why the irregular shape?
On the fast flowing Welsh rivers the pear-shaped coracle is more stable and able to cope with river conditions.
Origin: River Towy, UK, Wales
Coracles fishing on the River Teifi, 1972
Two Coracles being used in the traditional way for fishing for Salmon on the River Teifi