The river of Eden

The morning started with a flurry of messages on WhatApp where the various options were mentioned before the collective decision was made to paddle the Eden, at a medium level, from Lazonby. A 0900 meet at the normal place near junction 36 saw 2 vehicles setting of and were met by more at the car park. This gave a total of 8 paddlers, Chris, Chris, Mike, Phil, Tom, and Guy. The shuttle was run then of we set off. The upper section, 8km to Armathwaite showed nice New Red Sandstone cliffs with well developed cross bedding (sorry but if you get someone with a geological background that’s what you get), but more to the point a series of pleasant grade 2 + 3 rapids. Great for playing on. Beyond the rock faces is Amathwaite weir —-. A careful 10 minute inspection, followed 10 seconds lining up the run then 10 millisecond to go over the top and be spat out into the turbulent water at the bottom. The result was all the paddlers made it look easy with no swimmers.

The final section 8km, to Wetheral had fewer rapids but include some large wave trains and  big surf waves , maybe Cumbria’a biggest, these could still be played on. All in all a very pleasant run down the Eden.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Chris T

 

Advertisements

Mint

Sunday and levels had settled, Sten organised us all to the put in on the Mint only problem was my spraydeck was at the take out of the Mint. I am going to blame everybody else claiming inadequate supervision from other members of the team. Although in fairness they did point out that I was about to leave my boots in the car park before I drove home.

However – the river. Good level (0.9) lots of company, there were a group of eight of us and another group of seventeen at the put in. Fortunately we all separated up and the river did not seem to crowded at all.

Lots of cold clear water bubbling down past the familiar rapids, touch of spring in the air with some sunshine, so much warmer than the Wharfe with a biting north wind, in the right direction, pushing us down the river but still cold.

Butties in Morrison’s car park and the group from London arrived and soon there were kayaks of all shapes and colours, quite a jamboree.

Oh well that’s it for another week, still Galloway next weekend, come on rain do your stuff.

Wharf

Friday 15th paddle seemed like a good idea with lots of rain forecasted in the night and four of us, Chris, Matt, Nigel and Brian gathered. The forecast was so promising Matt took the day off work. I hoped given the forecast, for trip down the top of the Wharfe, but no rain in the night meant a move to a Plan B and not such a bad plan B at that. We transferred down the river a little for a run of the Wharfe from Kettlewell to Grassington, past the mighty Kilnsey Crag and memories of days with a vertical as oppose to aquatic slant.

Conistone rapid gave us a good for a bit of target practice as we aimed for a predetermined place to boof the recirculation below, only to have the river fight back, take control and push us where it wanted us to go. The Strid was good, finishing with a long fun slide and eventually we arrived at the get out with just Linton Falls left to go. To go! Who said to go? Any thoughts of running Linton Falls were quickly abandoned – it looked horrendous, fascinating to look out and pick out a line we would theoretically run without even the remotest possibility of us actually getting back in our boats and giving it a go.

Great Greta

River gauge. 1.3 high

Paddlers Brian, Sten, Mark Mc, Grant, Sue, Matt, Ian Mc, Chris, Nigel, Mark H, guets Tom and Reg

The hardest part seemed to be getting to the river Mark and Ian getting stuck in traffic jams on the M6, my car decided to immobilise and I had to resort to reading the manual.

There were lots of us twelve in all –good to see – and I think we found a clean, fun satisfactory way of paddling with so many.

We divvied up into 3 groups of 4 paddlers and I must admit we had a rather nice paddle down a full but not too high Greta.

It was all very pleasant and good fun, no dramas, making for a very good controlled river trip, not lending itself to the retelling of dramas, disasters and interesting tall tales but perhaps that is a good thing.

Threlkeld cafe got the thumbs at the first visit and tales of old were retold.

Brian

Tasty Mint

Phil, Mike, Tom, Tom, decided to descend the Mint with  0.63 on the gauge. Another overnight spike eluded us, low but enough.

Te fish steps hid tight lines, for a clean descent of the ledges. The tree hazards removed so no portaging. In the large recirculating eddy, the river scores it’s first point claiming a roll by grabbing a paddle under a kayak on eddy line. All went smoothly, the sun emerged. The weir always a little exciting, until Meall bank falls. A tricky level, with the main line stopping all, in the hole at the bottom of the drop.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

River tried for 4 more points, but only gained one swimmer.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Phil – Meall bank falls

The slidey drop 400m downstream claimed another point as Phil almost landed on Tom’s upturned boat, as he just avoided being recirculated into the drop, whilst setting up his roll.  The final gorge section inspected as the entry is a little tricky.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Tom M entry to last rapids

All went well, but just around the corner the river boiled, between the final two drops, claiming a point from the other Tom.  Still a fine paddle that tested the team.

 

We’re going on a bore hunt!

Angela, Sten, Mike, Brian and Sue met at Canal foot on a sunny Saturday morning and with sunglasses and caps donned set off on a Bore Hunt.

This is the second time I’ve been in search of the infamous Bore and had high hopes for the day. The forecast predicted a F3-F4 headwind but we hardly noticed and with a bit of tidal assistance we were soon drifting past Bardsea enjoying the sunshine and flocks of oystercatchers on the sandbanks.

We headed out further into the bay to a wide channel and then we waited for the bore to growl its way into the bay.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The wind suddenly dropped, and Mike called “I think that it” as a smallish green wave approached only to peter out almost instantly. Soon the surrounding channels began to fill and Angela and Sten (I think there was some insider knowledge going on… ) headed over to a channel closer to shore. As each small surge of tide filled the channels there were cries of “is that the Bore?! Is that the bore?!” But it seemed to be eluding us.

Eventually Brian, Mike and I headed over to an Eddie forming at Chapel Island to wait and see what would happen next but it was looking like to infamous Bore would have to wait for another trip.

After a while we tried to head over to the shore side channel where Angela and Sten were waiting, but the current was revving up and we were cut off by another sandbank so decided to soak up the magical expanse of salt and sand and sit it out. Brian was kept amused by a play spot forming near an adjacent sandbank until there was enough water to make our way back to canal foot.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Once nearer to the pier it was clear how fast the tide was moving now as the current swirled around channel markers and ‘I almost mis-timed my landing at canal foot’.

 

We regrouped, had a quick sarnie and headed for the viaduct and the swirling brown waters around the stanchions. Angela took it like a pro and shot through the boiling waters followed by Sten and Brian.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMore opportunities to keep Brian out of mischief also found here. We then headed towards the Leven and our final destination Greenodd, stopping to play in the swirling waters.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWith our destination in clear site it took a while for us to realise that we were stuck in a back eddie and going nowhere. (Thanks for the heads-up Mike!) and were forced to re trace our steps in order to find another channel to take us to Greenodd. After some slalom practice with umpteen fishing lines projecting from the banks we were back on dry land followed by tea and Angela’s delicious homemade scones and tales of the infamous Morecambe Bay Bore.

 

We’re going on a bore hunt.

We’re going to catch a big one.

What a beautiful day!

We’re not scared.

 

Sue