WHITE WATER SAFETY COURSE
Saturday 31 July 2010
After sitting in a car park called the M25/M1 for the better half of Friday afternoon we arrived in Wales early Friday evening. The original plan was to camp but after some dubious weather forecasts and knowing that Trudy was going to have to make the best of things while I was paddling decided to book into a guesthouse. Good call the place was wonderful.
Met up with Steve and a late replacement Matthew Saturday morning and arranged for a paddle by the campsite. Matthew is an accomplished paddler who is just only getting back into paddling after a serious car accident. The guy still has to take morphine on a daily basis but didn’t let it deter him from taking a full part in the weekend.
The guys gratefully stayed with me and taught me a few moves during the afternoon. Probably a bit boring for Steve and Matthew but if you have to go with novices…Thanks guys
And so to Sunday, a very accommodating proprietor had arranged for an early breakfast before heading for the National White Water Centre on the Tryweryn. Steve and Matthew had already arrived shortly followed by Kevin. Jenny and her boyfriend got delayed making sandwiches!
A short classroom session followed by donning the wet gear and out to the river. The course covered basic Safety and Rescue techniques, from swimming in moving water to use of a chest harness Kevin also requested some foot entrapment techniques to be added to the syllabus.
Then it was into the water for swimming in moving water – fantastic. Really gives you confidence in fast flowing water. I was amazed at how few rocks I managed to hit.
Loads of throw line work during the day and various techniques for crossing fast flowing rivers.
Just one minor accident during the day, due to the over exuberant rescue techniques employed by certain members of the team poor Jenny was pulled onto the rocks during a team throw line exercise. Jenny would have been far better off refusing the assistance and swimming. We all live and learn.
A really good course for the total novice or the more experienced paddler. We all thoroughly enjoyed the course and cannot recommend it highly enough.