Mark would be the first to admit that he is not as comfortable in a kayak as he is on a bike, which is no surprise considering he has more than thirty years of cycling in his legs but only a few school trips in a kayak or canoe until Boo started paddling and he joined her on a couple of her adventures.Mark doesn’t want to work towards his two and three star paddling certificates but does feel that some rescue training makes sense if he is to share in Boo’s paddling adventures, at least until she’s old enough to drive herself to the lakes, rivers and coastlines. We had a chat with Jenna at the Leam Boat Centre and arranged for a few hours of Safety and Rescue training. After the land-based inspection of equipment and discussion of CLAP and STEVE (there may be more on both of these once Boo has recovered from the Rise Above ride next week) it was time to practise on the river.
They took it in turns to use the waist tow. We think Boo may have been at a disadvantage with this one but she did manage to drag Mark along.Then it was time to work on their Eskimo Rescues and discover just how cold the river was despite the sunshine this morning.Mark did become a little concerned during Boo’s rescue of him as he struggled to find the paddle she proffered over his inverted boat. His rescue was also hampered by a thirty foot length of fishing line that tangled around his head and neck. The relief once he made it safely to the surface was palpable and at least they both know that Boo can rescue him if absolutely necessary.
Apparently this rescue is referred to as “The Hand of God” as it involves the rescuer physically rolling the boat and paddler upright. Jenna made it look very easy but Mark is grateful that Boo’s paddling experience means he shouldn’t have to rescue her this way.
The technique they may have to utilise on the Three Lakes Challenge is the emptying of water from in a kayak and supporting the swimmer to return to their boat. Boo even managed to do this with Jenna and Mark’s longer sea kayaks so they are definitely feeling much more confident about next month’s challenge. Please do support their fundraising efforts for 2nd Warwick Sea Scouts.