Foundation Safety and Rescue Training – Only one place left!

This course is free to club members (apart from certificate fee) who are volunteering as rescue kayakers at the Great Scottish Swim on Saturday 26 August 2017. Otherwise the fee for club members for this course is £30. This course is the British Canoe Union Safety course that all other safety courses are built on and is often a prerequisite for future development. The next course will take place on Loch Lomond on Sunday 13 August 2017. There is only one place left on this course. This course is designed for all paddlers irrespective of craft. The objective is to teach simple and safe skills that can be applied appropriately across a variety of paddlesport craft including kayaks and canoes.  These skills will then form the basis of all safety and rescue training throughout the BCU Scheme. The course aims to provide the student with the key safety and rescue skills required to operate safely in a sheltered water environment and to be able to deal...
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Day 4 – The Search for Wind – Loch Eck, March 2017

The last day of Graham’s killer canoeing sessions and he couldn’t have booked a better day, if he had a hotline to the big man himself! The sun was splitting the skies, predictions of 18°, and apparently no wind. So I cast off my old faithful dry-suit and didn’t bother bringing my pop-up sail. I was totally up for a nice leisurely paddle on Loch Eck and shades were at the ready. The scenery didn’t fail, it was picture perfect as we were kitting out our Open Boats. Having passed around the 5L bottle of screen wash Graham R. kindly helped me carve my very own bailer. Graham S then declared we were going to get wet – great, the one day I didn’t bring my dry suit! Fortunately you can always count on Sandy to save the day, he only had a spare dry-suit. On the water we did a warm-up. Stupidly I thought it was genuinely “warm-up” and got caught out...
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Day 3 of Graham – The Seach for the Wind

  Day 3 of Graham's hunt for the wind took us on a trip down Loch Arachay in to Loch Venachar. After finding little wind and mirror flat water on our previous trips to Loch Lomond and Rhu , Graham was feeling optimistic on the back of Storm Doris. After a drive through the flooded Trossachs things were looking promising, we dragged the canoes through a flooded swamp and got onto the water. The put in was pretty sheltered and gave us time to warm up by practicing some of the skills we had learnt previously. We then headed down the Loch and true to form the Scottish winter failed to deliver the wind; however Graham kept us working by challenging us to think about what was happening during the catch and power phase of our strokes and to focus on the angle of the blade and what we were doing at each stage. As always I found that making fine adjustments has a noticeable difference on the...
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Across Scotland by Open Canoe (almost)

In the olden days the rivers and lochs formed the main communication routes through the wild landscape.   As idyllic as this sound, I now celebrate the modern age!   Day 1 A drive up toward Glencoe seen us disembark at Rannoch Moore, where the river Ba flows into Loch Ba.    At this point Graham armed us all with saws and instructed us (me) in it’s use…….after being left to pack my boat, I cut myself on the saw!    Having filled the canoes full of all the kit we’d need for the next 5 days we launched the heavy boats into the loch.   Sandy paddled up the River Ba for his first of many photo opportunities and then with little appreciation of what we were going to face, we were off. With naive enthusiasm we paddled the across Loch Ba with a head wind.   When the wind changed to a cross-wind we took the opportunity to raft up in pairs and fire up the sail.  It took...
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Open Boat Tour 15 – 19 August 2016

I am planning to go open boating during the week of Monday 15 to Friday 19 August 2016. I realise that its maybe not the best time for most club members as holiday periods will have passed, kids are back at school, everyone's skint, etc however I'm going boating that week! If there are any like-minded individuals in the club please feel free to get in touch. I am considering various options. These are: various single day trips on rivers and lochs  a multi-day expedition of an easy nature like paddling the great Glen a multi-day expedition of a slightly harder nature such as a classic river descent, if water levels allow a multi-day expedition across Scotland Obviously nothing is set in stone and I am still at an early stage in planning.  To keep cost down I will be wild camping using a bivy or hammock. If you are interested in any of the above options either speak to me at...
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OC Trip – River Spey 01-03.04.16

07.00 hrs on Friday 1 April 2016 saw Sandy, Leigh, Bernie, Derek and Graham Roy meeting at the Clubs Outdoor Store in Clydebank. Was this some elaborate April fool prank? No, we were meeting to start our three day open canoe descent of the River Spey. 3 hrs took us to our starting point at Kincraig on the north end of loch Insh where we unloaded the boats and then a further 3 hrs were needed to shuttle a car to Spey Bay and return to the start point. Eventually we were off! It was a fairly windy and wet day but we were thankful that the wind was coming from the south west so it was at our backs as we paddled north. 10 km of paddling took us to Aviemore, but no stops for us and a further 11 km took us to Boat of Garten. We then paddled on to our first campsite on an island which was...
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Open Canoe Weekend 1 to 3 April 2016

Hi, the 1 to 3 April has been set aside for our normal Easter-ish Open Canoe trip. Various ideas have been floated (if you pardon the pun) for this event. These are: Glasgow to Edinburgh canal trip Great Glen Canoe Paddle (slightly more strenuous) Another attempt on the River Tweed Another attempt at the River Dee The River Spey The River Tay No decision has been made as yet so I suggest that anyone interested come along to a meeting at the Pool session on Tuesday 15 March at 21.00 hrs (start of adult session). This trip will be open to beginners as we would seek to pair people up (experienced with beginner) to paddle tandem. Sandy...
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National Go Canoeing Week

FROM THE SCA National Go Canoeing Week happening 28th May – 5th June 2016. There are now a number of great initiatives planned in Scotland, and we are extending the date to the include the weekend before and after - effectively making National Go Canoeing ‘Week’ span FOUR weeks! Here is an idea of some key events happening as part of the Go Canoeing campaign: 22nd May: National Celebration of Para Water Sport and Para Cycling 28th May – 4th June: Starter sessions, mile builders and family trips at Port Edgar 28th May – 4th June: Starter Sessions and evening paddles at Aboyne CC 4th June: Go Canoeing Tour – Loch Tay 10th June: Go Canoeing Tour – Largs – Big Cumbrae 11th June: Go Canoeing Tour – Islands of Loch Lomond 12th June: Go Canoeing Community Day at Pinkston Watersports  Please register your event or sessions with us asap! This is so that your club can take full advantage of the marketing and promotional material available from BU and...
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Foundation Safety and Rescue Course – Sunday 13 September 2015

There are still spaces available for this course. This course is designed for all paddlers irrespective of craft. The objective is to teach simple and safe skills that can be applied appropriately across a variety of paddlesport craft including kayaks and canoes.  These skills will then form the basis of all safety and rescue training throughout the BCU Scheme. The course aims to provide the student with the key safety and rescue skills required to operate safely in a sheltered water environment and to be able to deal with common emergencies.  - See more at: http://canoescotland.org/courses-training/bcu-safety-training#sthash.o2tELjiB.dpuf Contact Sandy for further details 07962226280  ...
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River Paddling over the winter

Hi Looking at the following dates for river trips Sunday 23.11.14 Sunday 07.12.14 Sunday 14.12.14 Sunday 28.12.14 Sunday 11.01.15 Sunday 25.01.15 Sunday 08.02.15 Sunday 22.02.15 Sunday 08.03.15 Sunday 22.03.15 These will be open to kayakers and open boaters and will be tailored to suit the people taking part. The trips will lead up to a long weekend around Easter- time which will be more of an expedition type paddle, descending a river or rivers over several days. ...
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River Ayr in Open Canoes, April 2014

Last Sunday with just two of the open canoe coaching course guinea pigs fit, there was a change of plan. Rather than a day on Loch Lomond practicing canoe sailing as intended, we headed to deepest darkest Ayrshire to canoe the River Ayr. With Graham Roy, Scott Anderson and myself never having paddled the river we only had the guide book to rely on. The mandatory faff to find the best get in, do the shuttle and for one of us to buy lunch meant we headed off just before midday. Being a chance for Graham S to practice his coaching styles this meant every question asked was greeted with......"that's a good question - off you go and find out" - in the olden days the coach may have even answered a question or two... not any more! After lunch we played with CLAP... for those in the know this is what paddlers should I think about if they are...
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River Coaching and River Weekend

Sandy has had to change some dates for the river trips/river coaching. In May these will be: Sunday 5 May 2013 Sunday 26 May 2013 Please contact him at least three days in advance if you wish to take part. Each day will normally be a river trip with the venue picked to suit those attending. Persons will be able to take part either in kayaks or canoes on these trips. Sandy is also running a river weekend  over Saturday 1 to Sunday 2 June 2013. This will be based at the SCA campsite at Grandtully on the River Tay. There should be various options available each day for anyone wishing to paddle, from fairly easy to exciting. If you are interested please contact Sandy by 21 May 2013 so that he can make arrangements and book space with the SCA - Scottish Canoe Association. Sandy can be contacted on sandy.johnston@sky.com or on 07962226280.  ...
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Additional Club Trip

A few extra trips and events have been added to the calander. 26/27 January. Lochawe Cottage river paddle. Based at Graham's cottage and paddling Grade 3 to 4. Options for whole weekend or single days. Details on club calendar. 16/17 March. River Dee Descent by open canoe. A weekend camping trip down the Dee (Grade 1 (touching Grade 2/3).  Details on club calendar. 19/20/21 April. SCA Club Coach and Volunteer Development Weekend. More info to follow on the SCA website but an overview is at http://www.canoescotland.org/NewsEvents/ClubandVolunteerConference.aspx It is likely a couple of club members are going but this is generally a good weekend with subsidised course etc for club coaches and volunteers.  ...
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