Friday 25 October 2013

Half Day Kayaking Session in The Lake District. Sunday 20th October 2013.

After running a Scrambling Skills Training Course in The Lake District on Saturday, Iain was back out the next day running a Introductory Kayaking Course for Stephen & Emily Scott and Claire and Wayne Meehan who had travelled over from West Yorkshire for the session. (Photo one)

The weather on Sunday afternoon was not ideal for a first introduction to kayaking with rain showers sweeping across Windermere accompanied by a fairly strong south westerly breeze blowing on to the beach at Waterhead.
The four were keen to give it a try though and Iain made sure they were well kitted out with wetsuits, cagoules, bouyancy aids and we also provided spraydecks to keep the water out of the kayaks. One good thing about the weather was despite being wet & windy - at least it was reasonably warm.

Due to the breeze, Iain was keen that the group reach the river mouth as he suspected that some shelter could be found there in order to learn basic kayaking skills and we found a small sheltered bay a few hundred metres up river. Here, we looked at honing the groups forward, backward, stopping and turning skills and also moving the kayak sideways (photo two). Of the group, Stephen & Wayne had some previous water experience having recently undertaken the Great Glen trip in Scotland from Fort William to Inverness in Canadian Canoes, Emily appeared to paddle from the outset as if she had done so all her life (even though that apparently wasn't the case!) and Claire who also hadn't paddled a kayak before struggled to go in a straight line initially, but improved greatly throughout the afternoon.

After our basic skills session on the river, we headed upstream towards where the flows from the Rivers Brathay & Rothay combine - hard work against the strong flow! We ventured up the Brathay a little way and tried the advanced skill of forward & reverse ferry gliding across the flow and all four were able to do this.

Time moved on fairly quickly and as we returned to the lake we had little over an hour left to undertake a short journey to Pull Wyke Bay. On entering the lake from the river there was quite a swell and waves were breaking over the kayaks - just as well Iain had issued spraydecks!. Iain was quite concerned about the conditions but the group were relaxed and happy and Claire was suddenly paddling in a straight line without difficulty (funny how this often happens!) On reaching the small  island near to Pull Wyke Bay, the wind and swell dropped so we made our way straight across the lake to the old stone boathouse a few hundred metres south of Waterhead with the skill level of this group having come along greatly during the afternoon. Well done!

After that it was back to Waterhead to pack up. Stephen, Emily, Wayne & Claire enjoyed their Introductory Kayaking Session in The Lake District with Iain and will now be looking to take it further by joining a local Kayaking club near to where they all live. We wish them the best of luck with this. To find out further details about our Kayaking & Canoeing sessions in The Lake District contact us here.

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