Well, with the 16 degs. of sun beating down on us, we decided to head for the Lower Findhorn to catch the only real bit of water about…a nice mix of people today; some not spied on the water for many months!
First, the big decision of the day; drysuit or wetsuit?! …I opted for drysuit…it’s still not quite warm enough in the water to risk a neoprene-clad outing!
Decision two; Juice or Diesel…again, safety (comfort) first…out came the Diesel…then to the river…
After lowering the boats down to the river, with Pete setting up a pulley system as usual (he loves that bit of the Lower!), we set off down the river…a few practiced rolling to get their hair wet, with Malc demonstrating a classic eskimo rescue…being the club Presedent, I’m sure it was just a demo!
With a log-jam below Randolp’s removed by yours truly, the river ahead was clear. It was pretty low water given the lack of rain this week, so while some sections were a bit easier than usual, some of the lines we’d normally take weren’t running so it made for an interesting paddle.
Tripple Steps gave its normal level of excitement, with Dave Young deciding to run it blind and surviving…just! Ian Bowler decided to take his open boat down and almost made it too, if it weren’t for the pesky rock near the bottom of the first drop!
After successfully navigating Tripple Steps, we arrived at Corkscrew. It’s a bit narly at the best of times, but today with low levels made it that little bit more unfriendly! The only line available was river right, with a little boof off the ledge and into the muddle of boils, stoppers and waves below…
Everyone got down ok for once…well, everyone in kayaks save Ian in his Canadian…again, hats off to him for trying it in an open boat and he very nearly made it…just one rock too many to navigate…
Out at The Slot as usual and put in just below. A few more minor Grade 3s and a load of Grade 2s ahead and then we reached the get-out. Bit of challenge getting the boats up the steep bank, so out came Pete with his trusty sling once more to save the day…and what a day it was too; great weather, great people and a great paddle!