LCC/KMFF pool session

Saturday 17th Nov.

A s apart of the KMFF LCC organised two 1 hour  pool sessions. 21 people enjoy deleting new skills. Were able to  cash a wide range form complete novice, to one guy who want d to hand roll. All the participants made lots of  progress in their skills with many learning to roll for the first time.

We have to thank all the club volunteers for coaching in the pool; Robin, Mike P, Andy, Brian, Phil, Mike H,  guest Deb Pinninger, Helen and Bob for pool side support and video coaching, and to John W, Eric and Sten who were available but not needed.  A fantastic team effort.

Improvers day 1

1.35 on The  Victoria bridge huge in Kendal too low.!! NO.

Eric, Colin,John and guests John and Alex met Mike H and Phil at Burneside.

Low water, but enough for the aims of the day. We floated down, some very wobbly at first.  Trying to steer down the rapids rather than just paddle forward. Taking opportunities to learn / develop skills.  A few swims, to be expected  but soon the wobbles dissipated. Let’s try spinning as we float down riffles and cross eddy lines with speed.

The challenges developed, edging improved. Through Kendal we reversed onto small surfing waves, the sun emerged,  all smiles. a grand day out,  with all a little tired  but eager for more.





Plan B and C

Saturday 10th Nov. Mike H , Rachel Martin Ian and Ian followed the overnight rain to the North Lakes.

Plan A  proved  found insufficient water.

Plan B, Greta with 1.3 on the  Briery gauge a good medium level with all rocks covered. Some fine bouldery rapids and play waves.


All went well  until the almost mandatory trout spotting occurred.



Coach Martin reported a good attempt at the ‘brits abroad’ roll, apparently  identified by bringing your head up first!!!!  More nice wave trains and boulders to  navigate, found us watching two open boaters from Barrow, one searching for trout!


Ian H helped the recovery.

Soon the hardest waves subsided, Derwent joined and somehow we found ourselves with plan C, at Old Town and launching down Newland’s Beck as an afterthought.

A class 3 sweetie of a beck, many blind drops all have nice slides with a few more awkward S’s.


The hardest grade 4 proved tricky with the exit guarded by a fallen tree branches ( later removed). More steep class 3 brought us to the bridge at Stair, as the gloom of evening descended, along with more rain.


Five Lunatics?

Friday 9th Nov. The BBC was forecasting storm force winds in the South, and Force 5+ winds in the Lune Estuary, but five paddlers made the trip to Glasson for Mike Sunderland’s trip. Someone decided to shut the M6 that morning, but after some text messages and co-ordination via WhatsApp Phil. Mike H Mike S Heather and Peter congregated outside the Lancaster Smokehouse* and got kitted up for a breezy day.



The sun was out, (well, mostly), and we made rapid progress up the Estuary despite a strong cross wind, kind of surreal paddling at 45o to the wind  and making progress into directly  into it! reaching the canal aqueduct in well under two hours.

Then huffed and puffed up the steep slope to relaunch the boats on the canal. Even the Cumbrian partisans admitted the stretch through to the centre of Lancaster is very pretty, with lots of greenery and restored buildings, and we stopped at the Waterwitch for a welcome pint, (Thanks Mike!), and a bite to eat. Suitably refreshed, we ‘flew’ against the wind down to Galgate where we encountered a barge blocking the width of the canal, and on to the turn to the Glasson arm.
Six locks were portaged, with maximum points for effort, and zero points for style; seal launching a sea kayak down a grass bank looks as absurd as it sounds. By now the wind had picked up and pushed us the last few kilometres to the basin, and home. *The smoked haddock, smoked cheese and smoked salmon can all be recommended.

Cross-border raid

Heavy rain on Saturday night boosted river levels, but by Monday, most of the Cumbrian rivers were looking pretty low. So 6 of us did a quick cross-border raid to paddle the Border Esk from Langholm to Canonbie. Lovely river, but a bit of a trek from Kendal, so although most of us had “done it before”, our joint recollection of the river was a bit blurry; (“When I paddled this 5/10/20 years  ago…”). The river was officially at a medium level, which felt about right; plenty of features, some great play waves and the rapids flowed nicely.


We sailed through Skippers, Dog Island and past Irvine house rapids  and couldn’t really see what all the fuss was about; more like grade II than grade III, but there was a bit more challenge at Hollows Weir, where we all took lines on the left hand side. The main event is the Hollows Mill rapid, which contains “slabs and stoppers”, (which we’d have known about if we’d bothered to read the guidebook). This was definitely the most fun bit, with everyone taking a slightly different line through the standing waves. One paddler almost tripped up in the big stopper, but got shunted rightward at speed and ended back in the flow. We were back in Kendal in time to see the end of Countdown; “More rain please Carol or is it  Rachel!”




Dudes on the Duddon


Sunday  4th Nov.

The planned visit to Eskdale on Saturday  was cancelled, as river level was scrape and the road from the Duddon valley was closed.  The rains came – quite a lot actually! Sunday morning saw Mike H , Sten, Matt, John and Ian H on the Duddon starting on Tarn Beck. The second corner,  blind, class 4, brought a roll from Ian, then a few branches to avoid until we reach dates Duddon. Flowing at 0.94 on the guage. A good level with all rocks covered. A fine run with many fast eddies and frequent play waves. mostly grade 3


Soon the challenge of Jenny’s  corner with the awkward spike of rock to avoid.

At the level were able to jump the ledge river left.

Now faster and a little more continuous led us to the steep steps into a narrower  gorge. Today all rocks covered so somewhat easier than when it is lower.

DSCF1041 crop
entry to the steps

More fun grade 3 brought us to the Rawford bridge. Again at this level easier than when lower, but still fun as the entry is not easy and  and folding waves can be problematic.

S0051044 crop4 good runs and one boat minus owner!!! Thanks to John for his long jog down the bank to retrieve it.

“Thanks for today, I really enjoyed the paddle.” was the general feel of the group.