Every river i paddle I always carry this dry bag in the back of my boat as you never know what will happen on the river and this could come in useful if something happens.
First aid kit
In my first aid kit i carry few plasters to stop minor cuts getting infected, a sling and a few bandages for if anything more serious happens, bandage tape and safety pins to secure bandages or anything else. Some money, a lighter,vasaline and some alcohol wipes/wash.
I carry this in case of a more serious accident and waiting around for help this will make it that little bit more luxurious and not in the cold wind. 2-3 people go inside it and the idea is the body heat of everyone will soon warm inside up and the bright orange colour stands out. luckily so far i have not needed to use this but keep it in my dry bag as it is small and light.
Self adhesive lead flashing tape
I carry this around in case i split my kayak and need a quick repair to get me of the river, this is about 1ft x 1ft but folds up to be very small. This can be bought very cheap for only a small bit and is made for roofing but sticks very well and is waterproof ideal for a quick repair.
I also carry; pair of gloves,waterproof torch and a roll of duck tape
Duck tape comes in very useful for loads of things so i keep some rolled up in my dry bag (rolled round a pencil so i also have a pencil on me). You can also roll duck tape around your paddle so that it is easy to access if needed. The torch is there in case anything more serious happens and it gets dark and the gloves are just if anyone gets cold hands in the winter get them warmed up again.
With all the rivers high and continuing to rise we decided to squeeze in an evening paddle on the Thursday. We originally decided to go and paddle the Kent which was ended up being an exciting level of 2.27 on the gauge, however we didn't end up paddling this.
Force falls on the Kent at 2.27.
We went to the the Leven instead and managed to have a fun, Quick blast down and still had time to go back and run the Kent through kendal to Scroggs wier. It wasn't as high as when we first saw it, but it was still an interesting little paddle!
day had come. I had never paddled the Moriston before but I was ready for my
first taste of it.
I had an
hour and a half for practice runs and to scout the lines out so I walked up to
the top with my boat scouting out the river picking my lines as I went. I then
got to the got to the put in and all I could hear was the sound of the dam with
all the water crashing down. I put my spraydeck on and seal launched in and then
paddled over to the dam, I started to break in and out of the eddy
that the water coming down that the dam made; I had warmed up and was
ready for my first taste of the Moriston. My two practice runs went well,
Getting all of my lines and doing them in what
thought were good times considering I was eddying in and out and taking
my time. It was now time for the race.
Time had come for the race brief; we were told that there was going to
be 2 minute intervals between each competitor. I was bib number 25 so I had
enough time to watch other peoples run’s before I walked up top to get ready.
As bib number 24 went, I got in my boat and put my deck on, double checking that
it was securely on. My time had come, the countdown began and I seal launched
in and started paddling as fast as I could towards the first drop. When I got
to the drop I was thinking to myself that I will try and go a bit more river
right as it might be a bit quicker... it wasn’t. I slid into the slot, which
popped my deck and dented the nose of my boat. I rolled up and noticed that my
kayak was full of water, despite this I decided to keep on paddling with my
deck off. I managed to get past the next 2 set of rapids before my nose started
to sink which then ended up in me swimming. I started to float down the next 2
set of rapids and that is when I started to hit a few rocks, which were quite
hard. I decided I had enough of this, so left my boat and paddle and swam to the
side. Noticing that my legs were rather bashed up, I swam to the other side and
went to see the paramedics, who advised me to rest it and not to paddle my second
run. As well as this I also got an hour penalty for not finishing, as you could
imagine, I wasn’t happy about this but couldn’t do anything about so I just
watched the rest of the participants come down.
After a while, I decided that I was going to complete my second run, it
might not have been the best idea but I didn’t want to come all this way to
compete in the MRR and end p not even finishing. I went back up to the start,
got in my boat, pulled my deck back on and sealed launched back in for my
second attempt. I was a bit more cautions this time after my first run, but
this time the first drop went well. With my legs hurting, I battled on
throughout all the other rapids and managed to finish in a time of 04:06:57.