Thursday, May 31, 2007

High Queue

It's a msitake to walk up Snowdon on a bank holiday monday. The queue stretched 5kms along and 800 metres up!

Monday, May 21, 2007

SORTed by Ryanair

Sort, Pyrenees (for a weekend!?)
I usually consider the 5 hour drive to North Wales a long Haul for a weekend, but I couldn't pass up the opportunity for one pence flights for a weekend's boating in the Pyrenees.
Leaving in the middle of the night, for an early Saturday morning flight to Pau followed by a 4 hour drive across the mountains to Sort we didn't get on the Rio Noguera Pallaresa until 4pm.
With 35kms to paddle to the take out I questioned the wisdom of the plan. But, the river was tanking along. A big, bouncy continueous grade 3 and 4 run woke us all up and we reached the get out by 7pm for well deserved cervezas
Sunday proved to be more drive than paddle as we searched for sections suitable in the high conditions. We found a 3/4 section way up in the alpine meadows that fitted the bill.A long way for a weekend's boating - but great fun all the same

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Debating Access

I attended a Consultation meeting called by the Environment Agency on ‘Strategic planning of water-related sport & recreation’ held at Bovington 9th May.

This was one of four meetings held across the South West to discuss local and regional access issues. The Bovington meeting specifically targeted the Dorset, Wiltshire (Avon), Poole & Bournemouth area.

There were about 20 organisations that attended, including Surfers, water skiers, horse riders, sailors and, of course, anglers.

It has to be said that Brighton Uni organised the day very well. Each organisation produced an A1 poster prior to the event stating the main issues. Participants were split into two groups and each group ran through four workshop sessions

The fact that the BCU and RCC both attended meant that canoeing interests could be represented in both groups.

The value of the exercise, no doubt, will be known in the fullness of time but the river access issues and case were strongly aired. It was staggering how many attendees at the meeting did not know that canoeists were unable to paddle the rivers! At least our attendance afforded the opportunity to educate the un-informed and, hopefully, bring new allies to the cause!

I didn’t come away from the day too jaded – but neither did I come away fired up with enthusiasm and optimism!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007


n. pl. sym·po·si·ums or sym·po·si·a (-z - )
  • A meeting or conference for discussion of a topic, especially one in which the participants form an audience and make presentations.

  • A convivial meeting for drinking, music, and intellectual discussion among the ancient Greeks
  • [Latin, drinking party, from Greek sumposion : sun-, syn- + posis, drinking; see p (i)- in Indo-European roots.]
Well, I guess 'Symposium' was an accurate name for the Anglesey gathering of sea kayak 'anoraks'. There was certainly plenty of drinking and talking going on over the weekend - with a, perhaps, unhealthy bias towards the one subject.

200+ sea kayakers from around the globe met to chat, paddle, drink, padlle, snore, paddle. Although I felt a little like a (river) 'fish out of water' the Symposium did give me the opportunity to experience the handling of big boats in big swells, overfalls and tidal races. I did learn that sea kayaking doesn't always have to be a mellow side of paddlesport