CLUB UPDATE SEPTEMBER 18th 2020
IMPACT OF CORONAVIRUS (Covid-19)
POOL SESSIONS & CLUB ACTIVITIES RESUME
In keeping with government and British Canoeing guidelines regarding Coronavirus, Witham Lesiure Centre is now open. Club Monday night pool sessions are resuming from Monday September 21st. Currently pool sessions are for existing members only but we hope to open sessions up for new starters from October 12th.
In order to protect club members, other users and to comply with laws and guidelines, new procedures have been developed for the operation of the pool sessions. These have been emailed to all members. Please read through them before attending your first pool session.
The club will also now be resuming other club activities, again in line with laws and guidelines issued by the goverment and British Canoeing. Details of club events/activities will be available on the forum and the BCC trip information group.
Please remember that Covid has not gone away and we all need to keep up with our Covid hygiene and social distancing.
See the forum pages for more details.
If you want to add your trip or short blog to the website and don’t know how, contact a member of the committee or the webmaster for help or send it to the webmaster with photos and it will be uploaded for you. Obviously you must be a member of Bramston Canoe Club!
Pool Sessions on the horizon. Monday 21st September is looking good. The new session times are 19:30 – 20:30.
Wednesday 2nd River Stour Trip – Harwich to Mistley . This was a lovely weekday trip up the River Stour from the industrial side of Harwich, a new launch point for the 3 of us who were on this trip. Taking off from the beach on Wellington Road, we were straight into confused water rounding the harbour wall, but once into the estuary proper it was easy paddling. Keeping an eye out for the big boys toys and super tankers, Shotley Ferry, cross channel ferry etc, made it a very relaxing crossing to the eastern side of the river. I thought it was brilliant to paddle through the industrial port and ferry terminal.
Pretty beaches further up, duelling banjos heaven passing the beach huts at Wrabness, cultural buildings such as the Ceramic House made by Artist Grayson Perry, the large hospital school, and a trip down memory lane of the good old days working at t’mill in Mistley.
The trip back revolved around finding our own private beach, of which there were lots, for tea and sandwiches before heading home. The expected F4 kicked in, giving the yachts something to think about, and for us, a bit of choppy water and an even swell.
Again rounding the harbour wall put us in confused water again, the back wash off of the harbour wall was making us all bounce a bit. An enjoyable 5 1/2 hours and 19 miles of exploration. Thanks to Liz C and James W’ford for your company and humour.
submitted by John H 050920
Monday 24th Maiden Voyage. Someone bought a new boat and wanted to try it out so three of us decided to join him setting off from different points of the Blackwater Estuary. Liz paddled from the bottom of her road (show off) Roy and Simon (with new boat) set off from the Hard at West Mersea Yacht club and I set off from Bradwell and we all met up at the East Cardinal Buoy outside of Salcott Creek. The wind was westerlies and blowing a constant F4 with an incoming tide made the crossing from Bradwell to the north side of the Estuary a little bumpy. We then paddled to Tollesbury Marina, passing Anna J on a giant Canoe – looked more like a light ship – painting it red, and had a cup of tea and a sandwich.
We then paddled back to the Blackwater Estuary and visited the man made sandbank just outside the South Tollesbury channel, before parting company and heading back to our respective launching sites. The wind had calmed down to a very pleasant F2. Thanks to my fellow paddlers Liz C, Roy C and Simon H.
submitted by John H 250820
Friday 7th evening paddle started a little later than expected due to road works and heavy traffic. Five of us ventured out from Bradwell for a very leisurely paddle . With no real plan we went to Tollesbury, then circumnavigated the Oyster shed by Mersea Island before catching some very small surf waves back home. Very warm evening with a light breeze F2/3. Superb way to end the week and start the weekend. Thankyou to BarryI (Lollystix paddles) Clive M (Maldon Canoe Club), Andy E and Steve M for your company.
submitted by John H 080820
Swimmer Trophy hand over – Yes we have a new winner for the swimmers Trophy – Simon H took a dip in the R. Crouch on Wed 5th trying to disembark from his boat on the ramp at Eyott Sailing Club. Photo to follow
submitted by John H 080820.
Sunday 12th Red Sands – Weather conditions were perfect for the eight paddlers who set off from Minster. 17 miles for those who came back via the Montgomery. The forecast was spot on, F2 increasing F3 with a slight swell. A lot of fun was had surfing the bow waves of the large tankers entering the estuary. Big thanks to Barry I (Lollystixpaddles) for organising this. At least four of the group had never done this trip before. It was also a first, for some, for being so far out to sea in a kayak (7 miles off shore).
submitted by John H 130720
Swimmer of the Moment Trophy – Not a trophy of shame but one of immense pride, and in honour of this little duck mounted on wood a new “Page of Fame” will be added to commemorate the fallen few who have pushed their boundaries well beyond their watery limits and gravity! Look out for the new page.
submitted by John H 070720
Tuesday 7th Sea paddle around Mersea Island. 4 of us set off from the beach along the Esplanade and paddled anti clockwise around the Island. Westerly winds F3 to start with helped us along the way heading toward the East Cardinal buoy, and then the winds increaded to F4/5, but by this time we were on our way to the Strood, so no real issues. Stopped off at Stone point for a cuppa and then again at the Strood. Once over the Strood , the ebb tide helped us on our way to our start off point. Lovely paddle, 13.27 miles covered. Always a pleasure to do this trip, even Mr Seal made an appearance on the north side. Thanks to Liz C, Kev R and Mark B for their company and support. For future ref this was a 4.5 hour trip with breaks.
submitted by John H 070720
Strong winds in early July have lent themselves for some interesting sea paddles on the Blackwater Estuary.
Friday 3rd – Kevin R and John H set off from Tollesbury Marina in F4/5 winds, for a quick paddle over to Bradwell and back. The pictures show Kevin leaving Tollesbury – calm before the storm.
Good surfing practice for me, the expected 3′ waves must have had their Weetabix because they were a lot bigger! Stopped on Salcott Channel and then headed back into Tollesbury. Here’s a couple of pictutes of our return journey. (Too windy and choppy to take in the main estuary).
Later in the evening Barry I (Lollystix Paddles) Mark B, Andy E, Clive M (MCC), Mike D and others went out for a play from Bradwell – believe they all had fun too and including swimming. No names will be mentioned but clearly a “Swimmer of the Moment” Trophy winner. Mark, have you seen the trophy? It looks like this.
submitted by John H 060720
Sunday 28th Rough Weather on the Blackwater Training trip
Whilst most of us were tucked up in our warm homes listening to Val Doonican melodies on Radio 2 some of us were out playing in the Blackwater Esturay F5/6. The storm warning of an F8 blowing through was a SUPRISE! No, not nuts, but this was a training day for intermediate paddlers wanting practice in bigger water and conditions as well as rescues etc. Many thanks to Clive M ( Maldon Canoe Club), and Barry I (LollystiX paddles) for their help and guidance on what was a very fun day. The waves just built up as the tide rushed in. Early part of the morning steady F5 and an ebb tide had us beating against it, practising leading around buoys and positioning, followed by a nice surf back to Bradwell Marina entrance.
Then it was back out on the water, the waves had got bigger (the pictures were taken before the bigger waves set in) around Ross’s Revenge, Mark B can be seen passing the stern(top centre photo) and over to Bradwell beach for some lunch. Back on the water the tide had turned as had the sky (top right John D (MCC), Mark B, Clive C (MCC)). The sea state had changed, with good 3 foot short waves, so very bumpy, with a really strong wind against us. As you went down one wave the next wave was breaking on your deck. We sheltered behind the baffle wall and then set off for some rescue training. John D (MCC) was first off practising rolling and self rescue and was then rescued by Barry I, whilst this was going on Mark B did a lovely broadside roll, that woke him up! By the time John D had got back in his kayak it was very lumpy and bumpy, so whilst I was given the opportunity to practice I declined, and we headed back to Bradwell Marina. As we reached the harbour entrance the F8 came through complete with driving rain. (The weather forecaster on Ch16 had been correct). So glad we were in relative shelter. Excellent day on the water and nice to be out in challenging conditions for a change.
submitted by John H 290620
Fri 26th Lots of paddles happened today – sea kayak trip to Red Sands, Sea kayak trip to Thirslet Spit for a bit of fishing, Open Boat trip on the Medway and an evening sea paddle from Bradwell to Sails Point. Can’t be bad.
Tues 23rd River Stour – Stratford St Mary to Nayland
Well some of us were there early, some of us were there really early and some of us were positively late and some didn’t even turn up! So, a late start on the water putting in at Stratford St Mary. Liz C, Mark B, Anna J and John and his daughter Claire H had a very leisurely paddle up the River Stour, in idyllic weather conditions; a gentle breeze F1-2 for the sea kayakers, blue skies, warm and sunny. We met a few other people on the water but otherwise the river was quiet and all ours. We nearly got to Boxted Bridge but a family of swans stopped play. The male swan took a distinct disliking to Mark B and went for him. The rest of us weren’t so keen to pass the swan so poor old Mark had to run the gauntlet again! We had lunch, played on the flume and then took a gentle paddle back to Stratford St Mary. Lovely day on the river, but we didn’t make Nayland.
submitted by John H 240620
Wednesday 17th Bradwell to Maylandsea Marina, Osea Island fishing trip, Heybridge Basin evening paddle
Work is starting to get in the way of the new life of socially distanced gatherings but on Wednesday 17th Clive M of Maldon Canoe Club and myself paddled from Bradwell to Maylandsea Marina for an early lunch and then took the scenic route home via Osea Island causeway. We considered Northey Island but the ebb tide was dictating our movements.
Later in the afternoon a lone kayaker, James, went fishing or at least dangled his line in the water and explored Goldhanger Creek, suprisingly, having paddled the estuary for years, he had never ventured into it before. Just goes to show what a hidden gem we have on our doorstep.
And if that wasn’t enough for Wednesday, in the evening several open boaters cruised the R. Chelmer from Heybridge Basin. Kevin R, Barry I and Mike D with his daughter Poppy all went for a late evening paddle just to finish off the day.
submitted by John H 18062020
Sunday 14th Old Felixstowe to Woodbridge and Bradwell to Colne Bar
Social distancing is still in place however some paddling has been going on with individuals going out and doing their own thing, fishing for some and just messing for others. People are allowed to meet up albeit in small groups with the mandatory 2 metres apart so, on Sunday 14th, two trips took place (as reported to me) mainly due to tides and timings.
A group set off early in the morning from Bradwell to Colne Bar and beyond – Barry I, Andy E, Clive M, Jonnie and Roger were on this trip. Great paddling conditions and also witnessed a fantastic aerobatic display by Peregrine Falcons at Bradwell power station. Later in the afternoon Mike D, Mark B and myself set off from Old Felixstowe and paddled to Woodbridge on the River Deben. We knew this was going to be a late session (which put a lot of people off – that work thing again) – 16:15 on the water and off at 21:15. By the time we’d packed up and driven home it was well past 23:00, but worth the effort.
submitted by John H 18062020
Social distancing paddling is catching on! You can officially shout at people without them getting upset – ‘cos they are so far away from you (Dire Straits for the oldies). Some members have been dipping their toes in the water and enjoying the empty rivers and estuaries – make the most of it as the word is spreading fast. A couple of us agreed to meet out on the water Liz, Mike and me yesterday on the Blackwater keeping at least 17 foot between us (er, sea kayaks are long) and some others who happened to be out on the water. Very strange to see all the yacht moorings empty and the estuary almost to ourselves save for a couple of fishermen dotted around.
On the way out from Bradwell it was like a mill pond. Mike and Liz posing in front of Ross’s Revenge (pic1) and later on route from Marconi Sailing club to Osea Island (pic2). We had lunch by Osea causeway, beautiful clear and warmish water. Met a solo kayaker fishing and chatted whilst we were eating our sandwiches dotted along the beach – that was weird and about the closest we got to one another. We then paddled through the marshes of north Osea and popped out just behind the WW1 concrete bunker and lagoon on the north eastern side of Osea. Met Clive and Judy who had who had been to Maylandsea, before parting our ways and heading back to Bradwell. Mike, Liz and I went to see the Tollesbury pier on the north side of the estuary opposite Ross’s Revenge (pics 3&4), Liz led the way, and once there we parted company, Liz carried on to Mersea Island and Mike and I took the back way into Bradwell Marina punching the tide a little (No Barry Beasting for us) We had just enough tide to get over the mud flats. Excellent day on the water, and all within goverment guidelines!
submitted by John H 210520
Here we go gathering nuts in May, nuts in May – well, everyones gone nutty since the lockdown, but there is a little bit of light in the not too distant future. Paddling is now allowed, albeit with strict rules attached, 2 metre distance and only with one other person, so no groups, unless they’re from your own household. That means you can now go out on the green and crinkly stuff, but be aware – THE WATER IS STILL VERY COLD, don’t be complacent. If you get into trouble CAN YOU SELF RESCUE?
The following has been lifted from British Canoeing website – advice on going back on the water –
“Further advice for individual paddlers; In this first phase of return to activity, all individual paddlers should restrict their paddlesport activities to environments which are well within their capabilities, alert friends and family to their activity and predicted return times and ensure they have a means to call for help, handy at all times.”
submitted by webmaster 140520
Unfortunately, with the good weather coming everyone is itching to get on the water, but this is a “want” and not a necessity, and we must all do our part. All trips are cancelled until further notice, but this doesn’t mean to say we can’t do anything. Check your kit, make sure it is sea worthy and in date. Restock your first aid kit, tighten any loose nuts and bolts on your boat, check for leaks in rubber seals, oil zippers and if you have been a bit lazy wash your kit and reproof it. Keep an eye on the forum and social media for when the isolation period is over, and if you’re feeling really bored look at some of the navigation questions on the forum, if nothing else it will jog your memory.
submitted by webmaster 040420
Dear BCC Members,
Unfortunately due to the Coronavirus outbreak and the associated
logistical problems we have been informed by the organisers that this
year’s Blackwater tour has been cancelled. This may be a
disappointment to those of you who have booked a place but I’m sure
you all understand the reasons behind it. Hopefully a successful tour
can be run again next year.
Mike Secretary 200320
IMPORTANT RE CORNOA VIRUS
Dear Bramston Canoe Club members, Following the latest government recommendations regarding Coronavirus, the club Committee have been discussing the situation and how to proceed with regards to club activities at this time.
We are currently planning on NO CHANGE to the status of our club activities. For the moment Witham Leisure Centre remains open and our pool sessions will still take place as usual on Monday evenings. All club paddles will also go ahead as planned.
Of course as a club we want all our members to stay safe and it is therefore at the discretion of each individual member to decide as to whether or not they wish to attend a pool session or club paddle. We do advise that club members follow government advice regarding prevention of communicating the illness to others such as hand washing and avoiding unnecessary physical contact (hand shaking, hugging etc) and that those in more the more vulnerable groups isolate themselves as much as they can etc.
Please rest assured that we are continuing to monitor the situation and if we need to make any changes to club activities we will communicate this to members immediately.
Club Committee 19/03/2020
As the warmer weather,erm, arrives and people start emerging from hibernation, I thought the following advice from the RYA (Royal Yatching Association) on BAs might be useful. Whilst its aimed at Sailors its still relevant to us canoeists, kayakers and SUP paddlers
submitted by John H 01032020
Announcing the new:
Swimmer of the moment trophy
This is not a trophy of shame, it’s an award for trying and entertaining. You will still get a swim sticker to keep but the idea is to pass the trophy on when the next person swims hence “Swimmer of the Moment”.
The following has been lifted from an email asking for members help.
Post AGM – The AGM took place at Marconi Sailing Club. The post AGM paddle was abandoned due to Storm Dennis, however an exercise in Tidal navigation took place in stead which was well received. We were given an insight into Barry’s mind to see how he works everything out. The new committee has been formed, with Cheryl – Ann taking the lead as Chair person, and Andie B becoming the new Vice Chair. Standing down from the Committee is John H. The Minutes and outcome of the meeting will be published shortly. The new committee is published on the Contacts page.
submitted by John Webmaster 180220
Ok, are we all set for the AGM this coming Sunday (16th)? You should all have received a copy of the AGM for you to print out and bring along with you.Weather wise not looking too good, needn’t pack the suntan lotion. There is a planned paddle after the AGM but the weather is telling us a different story. The tides for Osea are Low Tide 11:13 0.6m and High Tide 17:34 4.3m. So even if you don’t brave the water, the estuary should look quite spectacular. Bring your cameras.
Local WindGuru Website shows it to be a tad windy. Maybe not for the faint hearted. As a fall back, a spot of navigation training will take place for those interested. Don’t forget to bring you own cup and sandwiches. The meeting will start at 10am prompt. Please do not arrive before 09:30 as you won’t get in! Note, once you have left the site you will not be able to get back in as the site will be locked. Make sure you take all of your belongings with you.
submitted by John H Vice Chairman 15022020
Ok this trip is for April but you need to book your place now. Blackwater Tour – once a year trip. This is a great paddle to do as we only have access once a year to this part of the river. It’s not too challenging and you will be taken care of by our club group. We stop about half way for a picnic / lunch at Blue Mills Wickham Bishops. Normally off the water at Langford by 15:00/16:00. You must book your place to attend this trip. Contact Mike, our Secretary as soon as possible. If you’re in need of boats or other kit the club and members can help you. Any question just ask.
submitted by Barry Events Co Ordinator 12022020
First Aid Course – the First Aid course,specifically for waterborne activities was very well attended. Well done for those who have refreshed their knowledge and a very well done to those who have never attended one of these courses before. It means that we, as a club and as individuals can enjoy the great outdoors knowing that someone has our back in the event of accident and be prepared to step in and save a life. We are very fortunate in that most of our members are first aid trained. As a further note it is a requirement for a lot of British Canoeing training, coaching and self development programmes.
Liz is off to Anglesey – good luck to Liz who will be completing her BC Sea kayak leader course.
submitted by Vice Chair 12022020
January for me (vice Chair), means hibernation, time for DIY repairs to house and boats, for others, its full on get out there and paddle. The Calendar is fast filling up for the year with some of the major trips now well into the planning stage. Get your name down sooner than later if you are interested, last minute add ons can be difficult to accommodate.
For those who need their First Aid updating there is a course in the first week of February, get your name down for a refresher. As a club we do very well with trained first aiders,in that the majority of serious paddlers hold first aid tickets. Nice to know if you’re in trouble out on the green and crinkly stuff. The AGM is set for February which includes a paddle afterwards. Full details to be sent out soon. If you want anything discussed at the AGM please let a member of the committee know in advance or email Mike, our secretary for inclusion. It is in your own interest to turn up for the AGM, even if you are not paddling. It’s your club, your input is needed and welcomed. See you on the water.
submitted by John H Vice Chair 270120
HAPPY NEW YEAR 2020
We’re back for another year of paddling and exploring our inland waterways, white water rivers and coastal shores. As you can see the calendar is already filling up with trips to whet your appetite. The year has kicked off with burn off the excess Christmas pudding paddle on the R. Stour (an epic 15k) with some impromtu trips in between. As usual keep your eyes on the forum and other social media.
Look forward to seeing you on the water.
John Vice Chairman.
For Next Year and Beyond
Beginning of the year there will be lots of training announced, White water, Sea, Surf and Touring and Scotland 2020. A week of sea kayaking on the west coast with plenty of wild camping!
Isle of Man 2021 A week on this beautiful island, perhaps even paddling the open crossing there! This proposed trip has caught the attention of a lot of BCC kayakers. So if interested, like the Scottish trip taking place later on this year, make sure you practice your sea kayaking skills and rescue skills well in advance.
More info on all trips can be found on the Trips Forum page and EVENTS calendar. Extra trips are always added throughout the year.
Trip suggestions always gratefully accepted
Submitted by Barry Events coordinator
Training and Training trips.
Our Monday night pool sessions are always full of training opportunities, use them.