On one of the coldest weekends of the year the team met on Dartmoor to tackle their first training trip together on white water.
I drove down on the Friday evening and the moor was covered in snow but the rain was pounding down washing most of it out. Sitting in the comfort of the rented holiday cottage with a nice glass of red, the tension my dad and I were sharing (but also trying the suppress) was palpable!
The next morning with faithful Wilma (the canoe) lashed to the top of the Land Rover we headed down to New Bridge, the get-in for the "Dart Loop" a grade 3 stretch on the River Dart. I had a look at the get-in with the intention of getting an idea of the water levels to do the easier Lower Dart. For some reason we made the rather rash decision to gamble it all and just go for it.
Before we knew it we were heading down snow melt, high level grade 3. Exciting to say the least in a tandem Canadian Canoe! Not the recommended way to learn river paddling (Niall hadn't been in a boat on rapids since 1968) but what an adventure!! Fortunately the GoPro survived the trip so we've put some clips together to share the carnage :)
A Crash Course in River Paddling
An expedition like this requires dedication from a great team so although it will be just Niall & Chris on the main expedition here you will find contributions from not only them but the whole support crew back home as well