Perfect weather even though cyclists meant we started a little bit late and different location 🙂
Fiona, Sam, Joel, Tracey & Reiss worked really hard in Rescue Techniques by Noels teaching 🙂
Well done on you hard work… enjoy the pics and videos.
At the end of the day Fiona commented :-
Beautiful day at Ardingly doing rescue training with Noel, Sam, Joel, Tracey and Reece. !!!!
We are a great day out on the Thames by starting at Walton Bridge and heading downstream towards Sunbury Lock. We had a quick look round Walton Bridge Marina on the way. There was a good number of us in both open boats and kayaks. We had a new paddler with us too, one of my friends Gill Payne, on her first ever trip and she loved it. We headed downstream to Sunbury Lock and rolled down the boat rollers to avoid the Lock. Once on the lower level we continued along the river, paddled around Sunbury Court Island and then back up to the field to stop for lunch.
Fiona is coming down with speed 🙂
Fiona made the following comment about the trip:-
“Thanks for a great trip Kevin, lovely day and great to see where you spent your younger days. Thanks to all for the paddling tips, chit chat and thanks for the lift Lauren. ”
After lunch we paddled back up to the Lock and hauled the boats back up the boat rollers. The current and wind were against us going back so it was a bit more of a struggle. We popped into Shepperton Marina on the way back and popped into Whitewater Canoe Centre while we were there. They didnt mind us ‘dripping’ around the shop in our paddling attire, but none of us were persuaded to part with any money for new kit, although the slimline glittery Squirt Boat did turn a few heads.
Once back to Walton Bridge, Phil and Marion took Gill for her first trip in an open boat which she also enjoyed. Thanks to everyone who came along on the trip and made it a great day!
“Yes, thank you everyone for a most enjoyable day paddling in the sunshine B-)
“Great paddle… thanks for organising it” 🙂
Photos and Video by Phil Newson. Trip report by Kevin Hardcastle & Phil Newson with comments from Fiona Lipscombe & Marion Quemby
The coaches scouted the bank at Brockham for a place to get in, which was a challenge given the very low water level. Eventually a steep bank leading to a small ‘beach’ was chosen and we all helped each-other to lower the boats and get in safely.
Paddling on moving water was a first for some club members and as we set off the adrenaline started to pump! Under the guide and instruction of the very experienced coaches Gary and Kevin they learned to ‘read’ the water and even got to learn some ‘ferry-gliding’!
The first feature was Dorking Weir and everyone enjoyed paddling down it. Kevin encouraged Sam B and Mark to play in the weir so they could learn how the kayaks interacted with moving water and how to react in a Stopper.
This was great fun and both Sam B and Mark cannot wait for Wales and the Dart!!
We came to the stepping stones at box hill and Lauren chose to paddle her boat through the stones themselves, with sheer perseverance and true skill she made it whilst the rest of us portaged round. As we were portaging Kevin spotted a dog stuck in the water having fallen off a stepping stone, he wasted no time in getting to lift the dog up on the stones and the owner was extremely grateful!
We stopped at a field just below the Stepping Stones for a spot of lunch.
There were fallen trees and a couple of particularly tricky routes through them. The water level was so low at some points that we even had to get out and walk when our boats ran aground! Sam B decided to get particularly close to a low-hanging branch and nearly took a swim, but managed to (not very elegantly) stay in her boat; a valuable lesson was learnt – DO NOT try to hold on the branch you are crashing into!
The Watermill Weir was next and Kevin had to give our President a bit of help after his boat got stuck on the shallow ground. We all made it safely and again had an opportunity to ‘play’ in the white water.
Finally we paddled the last few miles into Leatherhead, everyone was tired after paddling 9.25 miles but everyone gave it all their effort enjoying the views of the huge houses and chatting along the way.
Photo’s by Phil Newson & Sarah Humphrey; Video’s by Sam Boyd & Phil Newson; Article by Sam Boyd