Ray Cook, member, reports on Adventure Dolphin’s recent white water paddle on the River Usk from Sennybridge to Aberbran Bridge on Saturday 3rd February 2018.
Ray says: “The weather conditions were good for the time of year, although it was rather cold. We meet and started our day with breakfast at the Services just past the Seven Bridge, before traveling in convey to Sennybridge (Powys).
“Our adventure began before we even hit the water as the drop off point was a little wet and muddy which meant a couple of cars had to be pushed off the grass back onto the dirt track, but once on the water we we’re able to practice turns, ferry gliding and braking out before we all headed off down river.
“The first drop quickly approached and most managed to get down it without incident. Scampi, Trip Leader, did have a mishap and it took a few tries before he managed to push himself back up with his paddle and I capsized. This drop and I have history in that I capsized going down it a couple of years ago. I was confident that it was not going to happen again, but a minute later, my head was under water, the spay deck popped and I was swimming.
“The 12 of us successfully negotiated the next two drops and found plenty of play spots and waves to surf on. All in all, it’s a lovely stretch that offers varied drops and play spots which for me at least help to improve skills and confidence on white water.”
More than 60 of Adventure Dolphin’s leaders and helpers came together for their annual training event (Sunday 28th January 2108) which included a range of outdoor activities and club updates.
The morning session, run by Outdoor Academy reminded coaches and helpers alike what it’s like to try something new for the first time as they introduced participants to a mobile caving system, field archery (like clay pigeon shooting), kelly kettling and the climbing wall.
Following a superb lunch whipped up by our volunteer catering team, the afternoon covered a series of topics including DBS checks, volunteer hours, the future of Dolphin Centre, amends to coaching qualifications from British Canoeing and the latest marketing initiatives that are being undertaken.
Helper, Ollie Hatchett said, “It was my first training day and I was surprised by how good it was. The caving was brilliant, I loved the chilli and the updates were really helpful.”
The day was organised and run by Trustees Kevin Dennis and Ed Edwards with input from Group Co-ordinators, , Chairman – Clive Williams, Trustee – Tim Metcalfe, Coach – Claire Hardwick and Marketing – Donna Hatchett.
Eight kayakers, one canoeist and three walkers braved the cold weather to see in the new year with a paddle from Bisham Abbey to Maidenhead on 1st January 2018.
Thanks go to Grant Burrup for organising and running the trip, which was successfully completed ahead of time due to the fast flow and dedication of all concerned, who naturally took full advantage and floated part way along the 6.5 mile stretch of the River Thames, through Marlow, onto Cookham Lock, past Clevedon and onto Boulters Lock.
The Sunday paddle resumes after the festivities on 7th January with a social paddle – our normal trip out, followed by tea and cake in the Dolphin Centre. So, whether you’re a kayaker, canoeist, or marathon boater, do come and join us.
Don’t forget to visit our calendar of events for an overview of what’s planned in the weeks ahead.
Thanks to Kevin Dennis for running today’s Box Day paddle. More than 30 marathon boaters, canoeists and kayaker’s took to the water for a gentle trip down river before returning to the centre to hot drinks and mince pies.
It was the perfect opportunity to catch up with friends and fellow members at the end of what has been a very successful and enjoyable year for Adventure Dolphin.
The trip is planned to leave Pangbourne on the 17th traveling to Dover, crossing the channel and then traveling in MPV’s through France over night to arrive at our campsite on the Saturday.
We will spend the week paddling various parts of the river dependent upon numbers and abilities.
At the end of the week, Saturday 25th, we will depart camp and travel home arriving back at Pangbourne on Sunday 26th.
At this time I am looking to confirm your interest and arrange an initial meeting in the early new year where I will collect a deposit from those wishing to go. The estimated cost of the trip is £650, which will include the transport to and from Pangbourne, channel crossing, camp site and the majority of the food.
We have plenty of drivers all able to help with a shuttle run. The goal will be to get as many cars at the end, as possible. We will need a few people to drive the drivers back to the start and then collect their vehicles later.
So this means anyone who wants a vehicle shuttle- please be at Tyle Mill carp park, by the canal for 11am
Anyone who is just being dropped off and collected from the end, can you be at start for 12 noon.
I will bring some hot mince pies and sausage rolls. Please bring some snacks and hot drinks with you. Dress warm, it looks like we will have Easterly winds (in our faces) and will be very cold.