Volume 16 Issue 7

July 2016

July Paddler
The monthly newsletter of Liverpool Canoe Club

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News items or reports on club activities should be sent to website@liverpoolcanoeclub.co.uk

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Major Trip Reports.…



1/06/16 Major dates for Club Events – for more detail check the online Club Calendar…….

3 July 2016

Hilbre Island Sea Kayak Race Click for more……

3 -12 July 2016

Scottish Sea Kayaking Trip coordinator Frankie Annan Trip now full

15 – 17 July 2016

Anglesey Weekend No 3 Bodfan Farm Click for more…… Coordinator Jenny Brown   To book a place…

22 July – 7 August 2016

Alpine Summer Holiday Click for more…… Coordinator Keith Steer  

14 August 2016

Liverpool Triathlon – LCC Safety kayakers needed Click for more……

17 Aug – 2 Sept 2016

Alaskan Sea Kayaking Trip Coordinator Keith Steer Trip now full

16 – 18 Sept 2016

Anglesey Weekend No 4 Outdoor Alternative Click for more…… Coordinator Peter Massey To book a place…

11 – 19th February 2017

LCC Ski and Snowboarding Trip Coordinator Fiona Barry

13 – 17th April 2017

Scottish Easter Paddling Holiday based at Kinlochleven - coordinator Roy McHale. To book a place…


1/06/16 June “Photo of the Month” Competition


Liverpool Canoe Club Photo Competition Winners

Congratulations to Mark Pawley for his winning photo:

“Isthmus in the Caolas an Eilean – Outer Hebrides


Runner up Ian Turnbull

“Sam Preston on the Tees Barrage”


Runner up Ian Turnbull:

“Sarah Gille on the Tees Barrage”

 Not found your photograph? – see all the entries for this month………..

Criteria for the photo of the month competition…. 25 % Quality and sharpness of the photograph, 25% Quirkiness and framing of the subject,
25% Diversity of the subject material (ie not all one discipline), 25% has LCC logo or clothing in the shot.
Please send in your entries for next month now - website@liverpoolcanoeclub.co.uk

27/06/16 Bull Bay - Benllech & a bit more


With the wind blowing strong from the SW, it was time to head to the NE coastline of Anglesey for the LCC day out. With the plan to catch the flooding tide and have a reasonably early passage through the Point Lynas overfalls, it meant an 8ish meet at the A5 services, to finalise plans and sort shuttle.

With extreme efficiency, and no faff at all, the team arrived at Bull Bay, launched and headed straight to East Mouse for our first overfalls. All content, especially as we had been joined by porpoise, we headed to the more serious overfalls at Point Lynas. No problem, everyone got stuck it before emerging successfully at the other side. Next job was to surf the swells to Dullas and its basking seals. We zoomed along.


First luncheon / 11's was had on Dulas, but all too soon it was time to carry on. With the wind funnelling through a gap in the hills, the crossing was exposed and had a beam sea. The team did great and we soon reached Moelfre. 


Down to Bellech for lunch, passing kestrels on the way, before continuing to our get out.


A great 21km LCC day on the sea 


Mike, Ian, Dave R, Tony V, Don B, Mick R & Catriona



27/06/16 Ten New Coaches for LCC


Way back in the depths of winter when we all embarked on gaining our level one coaching qualification, I doubt that any of us realised just how much work would be involved. That said, all of the effort we put in was great fun and it was also beneficial to our general paddling skills as it made us sharpen our techniques and address any weak areas.  Now that all of the training and assessments are over, Liverpool Canoe Club has 10 new coaches to add to the army of existing volunteers that quietly get on with the job of helping people get on the water and improve their paddling skills.


Although we had already undergone hours of training to get us ready, the final training and assessments took place over two weekends this June and these 4 days were run by Nick Cunliffe and Matt Giblin of Kayak Essentials http://www.kayakessentials.co.uk/ both of whom have been good friends of the club for many years. The 4 days were spent at Liverpool Marina, both on the water and in the classroom, and everyone of us came away knowing that we had been part of a quality experience; Nick and Matt really know their stuff as they’ve been coaching for decades.


Coaches come into the club from all sorts of different directions /members/members/coaches.php but we’re the first wave of coaches to have gone through the system while being supported by Liverpool Canoe Club. From the outset, each of us stated that we wanted to give something back to the club after benefitting from being coached through our early days on the water.


Being the kind of people we are in LCC, all of our training and assessment sessions were great fun with lots of banter and high jinx ; even though some of the topics were pretty serious, requiring concentration and a good deal of effort.


So, now that – Leanne Murray / Sarah Gille / Carole Thomas / Graham Devaney / Kieran Sinnott / Gareth Jones / Alan Peachment / Chris Wood / Colin Muse / Pete Thomas .. are level 1 coaches, they each would like to give a huge thanks to everyone in LCC who contributed and gave up their time to make it happen.


Notable among these are: Keith Steer / Ian Bell / Dave Reynolds / Rosie Diver / Mark Garrod / John Fay / Zoe Maynard / Robbie Smith / Tom Clifford / Peter Thomson / Vicky Palmer / Colin Smith and many more who helped. Great effort one and all.                               More Photos…….


25/06/16 Arisaig trip - June 2016.

Having previously sampled the delights of Arisaig during one of the club’s Easter trips, when the weather was a little less than perfect, I really felt that there was a lot more to offer if the conditions were right. We three tend to do our own thing, and paddle places that are suitable for any level of paddler.


I approached John and Chris Fay around Christmas time 2015 to see if they could be talked into a Scottish vacation and found that no “Talking” was required. They too were full of enthusiasm. I managed to locate and book some ideal accommodation in a reasonably central location. This had room to spare, so Phil Edwards joined our group. We now had six paddlers of varying degrees of competence, but all with sufficient skill to cope with less than sheltered conditions.


As the time drew near, I planned some potential routes and marked them onto laminated maps. My laptop has Memory map installed and I was able to load the routes onto our various GPS devices as we decided each day’s journey.


We went from Gortenachullish on the first day, through the Arisaig Skerries and down to Luinga Mhor, the largest of the group of rocks that make up the Skerries. The next day saw us heading North from the same location in a reasonably straight course, and after rounding  An Glas-eilean a rest on the beach close to Traigh golf course was required. We returned at a leisurely pace exploring all of the bays and “Rock Hopping” possibilities en route.


This day we also went for a short paddle in a Southerly direction, as the first day. John had been using Chris’s boat up to now, but she joined us this time and Irene stayed “Shoreside” with the seventh member of our group, Penny. This is John and Chris’s “Sea Dog”. John used Irene’s Capella this time. After this, Penny joined us, sat on either John or Chris’s legs on a number of occasions; she was no trouble at all.


The next day saw us on Loch Ailort. A pretty stiff breeze down the Loch made for an “interesting” trip out. Our lunch break was at a beach near Roshven and very welcome it was too.

The return trip was really hard work and wherever we sought shelter it was short lived as the Loch seems to get the wind into it no matter where we were.

The next day was used to rest and visit Mallaig - no paddling was done.

Thursday saw us on Loch NAN UAMH where we found a great put in just to the East of the Prince’s Cairn. This was another trip that found us sheltering from the wind, but it was really a great paddle.

We stopped for a cuppa and a leg stretch and got the boats onto a rocky shore. The tide was “making” really quickly and this had us constantly moving them up to higher ground.

Friday found us on Loch Moidart with a trip to Castle Tioram and around Riska Island.  It was again a bit windy, but with plenty of opportunity for shelter in between some quite open areas.

Everywhere we went was surrounded by really beautiful scenery and the water was crystal clear.


All in all it was a very successful trip with a great group of people and one that I would recommend. I hope we can do it all again------maybe next year.

Perhaps others not wanting too demanding paddling may care to join us.


Bob Hamilton



25/06/16 Swim Event Safety and BCU Lifeguards


Kayakers are often used to escort and oversee the safety of swimming events.  Liverpool Canoe Club has many members who are very active at events up and down the country.  We also oversee several events in our home waters of the Liverpool docks.  If you would like to get involved the club is running several courses which qualify you to officially help out at major events.  We also need volunteers to help run the Liverpool Triathlon – this is a major source of donations each year and it is your chance to help put something back into the club – see below for more information.



Revalidation Course for those with a SESA qualification that has expired. (Lasts for 3 years) 6:30-9:00pm - Tutor Ian Bell Click here to register...... 


First Aid Course 8 hr Suitable for SESA and Coaching Awards up to level 2  This needs renewing every 3 years
[eg BCU (UKCC) Level 1 Coach (working independently) ‘Old’ BCU Level 1 Coach ‘Old’ BCU Level 2 Coach BCU (UKCC) Level 2 Coach]
Expressions of interest to Ian Bell – please state either 4 or 8 hour course.  If there are enough responses we will send out further details of how to book. Email: ianandalisonbell AT yahoo.co.uk


First Aid Course 4hr Monday Evening 25th July 2016 (Suitable for SESA – Swim Event Safety)   This needs renewing every 3 years
Expressions of interest to Ian Bell – please state either 4 or 8 hour course.  If there are enough responses we will send out further details of how to book. Email: ianandalisonbell AT yahoo.co.uk


BCU Swim Event Safety Course (SESA) You need to be competent in a kayak and have 2 star paddling skills - Tutor Ian Bell Click here to register...... 


Warrington Dolphin's swimming event held in Albert Dock on the Saturday morning. 
Cover is needed from 8:30am until 12 noon. We will have about 50 swimmers and I need to provide safety cover over the length of the course from Salthouse dock through Wapping dock to just pass Queens wharf bridge. Ideally, I need about 10 to 15 kayaks/canoes spread out over the course and we will also have a rib safety boat also on the course. LCC coordinator (Volunteer Required). Click here to register......


****Liverpool Triathlon 14th August 2016 (held in Queens Dock)****
The club provides all the cover for this event each year. We need Volunteers to help with kayak safety cover, entry and exit teams and team leaders and assistants. (This is your chance to give something back to your club) Click here to register......
List of who is attending - Safety Teams and roles.....

25/06/16  First Weekend of the Level 1 coach course run by Kayak Essentials for Liverpool Canoe Club


Excellent first 2 days of an @BritishCanoeing level 1 course with @LpoolCanoeClub some great coaching performances. 


This is Caz demonstrating how to paddle forward with good connectivity, body rotation and length of paddle stroke.   A shame this was during one of the rain showers on day 2, the weather was hot and sunny on day 1










25/06/16  First Aid Courses (heavily discounted to club members and needed to go with coaching qualifications or Swim Event Safety Awards)


Please reply to Ian Bell to show interest – please state either 4 or 8 hour course.  If there are enough responses we will send out further details of how to book. Email: ianandalisonbell AT yahoo.co.uk



Saturday 23rd July 2016 - 8hr Award Suitable for Coaching Awards up to level 2  This needs renewing every 3 years
[eg BCU (UKCC) Level 1 Coach (working independently) ‘Old’ BCU Level 1 Coach ‘Old’ BCU Level 2 Coach BCU (UKCC) Level 2 Coach]



Monday Evening 25th July 2016 - 4hr Award (Suitable for SESA – Swim Event Safety)   This needs renewing every 3 years






21/06/16  “The Salty Dog’s”

Short video from the weekend where some river paddlers where taken for their first outing on Anglesey, Watch in HD with the sound on.  https://vimeo.com/171449201



19/06/16 Sea Kayak Trip from Porth Dafarch 18th June

With a slight breeze and good weather planned, we met at Porth Dafarch and launched onto an inviting sea.


Riding the ebb we zoomed past Trearddur Bay, and surfed to the white arch for a quick explore. This place always amazes me, but with more to see we continued into the beam sea towards the race off Rhoscolyn Head. The sea was a bit confused, but there was time for a quick play before turning SE and heading to the beacon at Rhoscolyn.


At Rhoscolyn we took time to play in the races between the islands, all the time under the bemused gaze of lazing seals and squawking sea birds, before heading to lunch in Borthwen.


Fully fed, we launched whilst the ebb was still flowing, so it was back to the beacon for more play in the races and to see who could fit in the narrowest gap. Games exhausted, it was time to head back to Porth Dafarch via the white arch, the black arch and numerous points of rockhopping.


Another great LCC day on the sea.


Paddlers :Mike Alter, Andy Garland, Ian & Catriona



19/06/16 Kayak Safety Cover at the Great North Swim


Just finished three days of swim support at the Great North Swim. There has been great support from members of the LCC over the years with this one being no different. I've included a few pictures from the kayakers perspective which I hope you like. The most interesting ones are from when we were moving zones as I came across Karl with a young family of ducks on the back of his kayak. Hope you like the pictures.

Peter McComasky   More Photos…….






18/06/16 Arisaig 2016


After seven hours of driving we arrived at the Ach na skia croft where we had booked a cottage and a lodge for our week long stay on the western coast of Scotland. Our accommodation looked out over the sea to the islands of Eigg, Rum and Skye and the area provided lots of paddling opportunities.


Sunday:- Gorten Sands

After settling in and a good nights sleep we all met for a short trip down the road to the Gorten Sands caravan site where just before the entrance was a small cove with space for a couple of vehicles to park. The tide was coming in so it was only a short walk to the water where we launched and headed left towards Arisaig. We hugged the coastline weaving in and out of the many rock islands peering at the sea bed through the crystal clear water.


Passing Arisaig we could see the masts of the yachts in the marina to our left. To our right we could see seals lying on the rocks. Some were on their backs and seemingly waving their flippers as we passed by in close proximity. Other kayakers in the bay were also enjoying the spectacle as well as the glorious weather we were being treated too. After lunch we headed back taking in more of the breathtaking scenery. What an amazing day 1.


Monday:- Gorten Sands - Golf Club

On day 2 of our paddling week we decided to return to cove we had visited the previous day but this time we would paddle right and head towards Mallaig. Out we headed towards the small group of islands in the distance which on arrival provided some rock hopping opportunities.

Irene spotted a white sandy beach to our right which proved to be an ideal location for lunch. Across the water was the southern tip of Skye which looked inviting. From Mallaig it would only be a short 4.7 mile across. Maybe something for a future date?

On return to our small cove we were amazed to see a herd of cattle lying on the beach. We were told that the farmer kept them on a small island but each day they actually swim around the headland back to the beach. If only we could have witnessed that!


Tuesday:- Lochailort - Towards Glenuig.

Today we travelled to hamlet of Lochailort which lies at the head of Loch Ailort. We found a good launch site at a slip near a fish farm and paddled towards Genuig. The wind was blowing pushing us in our desired direction. We knew that the return leg of the journey was going to be hard.

We paddled through lots of small rock islands and once again marvelled at the clarity of the water. Our group today consisted of the usual Bob, Sue, Irene, Phil and John but today also included Chris Fay who would normally only paddle at the docks and on inland waters. Today the conditions were quite different. Her Axis crossover was bobbing on the waves and surfing as it was being pushed along by the wind. Both Chris and Phil in crossover kayaks coped extremely well in these conditions.


We did intend to have lunch on a beach visible on one of the rock islands ahead but Irene once again spotted a lovely white sandy beach which gave excellent shelter from the wind. Here the group relaxed and explored their surroundings. Shells were collected and the small life forms in the rock pools were watched intently by the interested group.


Re-energised the group prepared for the return trip. We knew it would be tough going and our speed was slow in comparison to the outbound leg. This meant a few hours of hard paddling. Moments rest were taken by shielding ourselves from the prevailing wind in small inlets along the shore. Here our kayaks rested steadily on the bed of seaweed floating on the surface which held us firmly in place.


Some hours later we had completed another journey and even though it was not as sheltered as we had thought it might have been it was very enjoyable. We would certainly all sleep well tonight.


Thursday:- Druimindarrock - Arisaig

We had a lazy day on Wednesday so our next trip was on Thursday. This started with a short drive along the A830 towards Druimindarrock which lies on the shore of Loch Nan Uamh. We found a suitable launching spot down a small banking which led to a small slipway where various items of fishing equipment was scattered. Six of us paddled off right towards the small group of islands in the distance all glad to be off the shore and away from the midges which were attacking us despite our application of the anti-midge lotion "smidge."


After a nice paddle and lunch it was time to turn around. However, the previous evening there had been talk of perhaps continuing this paddle all along the coast, around the headland and through the Sound of Arisaig and concluding the trip in Arisaig itself. This trip would be just over 12 miles and against the 20mph winds forecast for today. Myself and Phil decided we would attempt the trip and the others would head back and meet the pair a few hours later in Arisaig.


So off we went hand railing the coastline as progressed. This side of the Loch was being protected from the NNE wind but once we ventured out around the headland this would hit us head on. Onward we paddled making sure that every section we paddled had get out points. We had the onshore phone contacts in Phil's phone and also our VHF radio in case of emergency.


Soon we reached the group of islands at the end of Loch Nan Uamh and across the bay in the distance to our left was Glenuig. We now turned right up the coast and as predicted the wind now hit us head on. The sea was rough and was crashing over the rocks. It was decided to land in the small cove to our right and walk up the hill to way up our route. The little cove was beautiful with white sand and turquoise water. Looking out we planned our route into the next bay and then repeated the process. About 10miles further out was the Isle of Eigg and behind it Rum.


Eventually we rounded the headland and headed into the waters that would lead us past Rhumach and eventually to the entrance to Loch Nan Ceall. The wind was still strong but we paddled hard past the Arisaig Skerries where we were welcomed by a group of seals who swam towards us before disappearing beneath the surface. To our right two small fishing trawlers where heading in the same direction and soon turned into the Bay marked with the port and starboard perches.


Taking the slight shortcut through the two islands in the mouth of the loch we continued until eventually we could see the masts of the yachts in the sheltered bay. Arisaig actually meaning "a safe place." At this point we received a call from Bob "Grumpy" Hamilton on the vhf radio. He had us in sight through his binoculars and was also flashing the headlights of the van which we could see clearly marking a spot in the marina to head for.

The plan had been for the others to head back to the accommodation and await a phone call for us to be picked up. Bob however had other plans. He wasn't leaving Arisaig until we were back safe and he sat in the van until he spotted us. Even though we were in sight it was all on another hour until we were hauled out onto the marina slip and climbed out onto dry land. What another great day.


Friday:- Castle Tioram (pronounced cheerum) on the tidal island Eilean Tioram in Loch Moidart.


The weather today was windy again so we really wanted a sheltered paddle. Bob had done some research before our holiday and really wanted to paddle around the ruined Castle Tioram at some point so off we went minus Chris who wanted to walk into Arisaig on a shopping spree. Phil and myself arrived first and was greeted by the sight of the vast bay heading out to the sea in the distance through a narrow gap at which could be seen the small Isles. To our right on a small tidal island the Castle Tioram towered and dominated the bay, and yet, it itself, seemed to be dominated by the grandeur of the surrounding hills.


It was about 40 minutes until Bob, Irene and Sue arrived due to a "unplanned detour" which translated meant they had taken a wrong turn on route. This gave Phil and myself the opportunity to walk over to explore the castle. Access to the inside was denied due to its unsafe structural state but we could walk around its outer walls and enjoy the magnificent views over the bay. We could also now spot Bob's van arriving so we headed back over the sand which was quickly being covered by the incoming tide.


The view of the Castle from dry land was now substituted by the view from the water as five kayaks paddled beneath the impressive structure rising above us and crossed the stretch of water that separated it from a larger island. After a couple of hours we had paddled around the island and were pushed back towards the beach. Here Bob demonstrated a roll which was recorded on the GoPro attached to the mount on his deck. What a way to end a great week. Great location, fantastic company and amazing experiences.


Paddlers :-

Bob and Sue Hamilton, Phil Edwards, Irene Jackson and Chris and John Fay + Penny the Jug.


Reports by John Fay                                                More photos…..




Junior Club “munchies on the water” Tuesday 14th June


The Junior Club enjoyed a “munchies on the water” evening when they paddle up to “seal launch city” (A landing area in front of the Echo Arena) and devoured food and drink that they took with them.  Plenty of high calorie food was observed to balance the arduous journey up to the Wapping Dock.   More photos…..





16/06/16 An evening with Justine Curgenven (Free sea kayaking talk in Liverpool)

Hugh Baird University Centre - L20 Building, Liverpool 30 June at 19:00–21:00
Balliol Rd, Bootle, Liverpool L20 7EW  Click for map…..

Come along to Hugh Baird University centre for a free evening with Justine Curgenven and her tales from her Aleutian Islands trip. 

In the summer of 2014, Justine Curgenven and Sarah Outen traversed the Aleutian Islands. No-one has succeeded in kayaking the length of the remote and stormy Aleutian Islands which stretch from Russia to Alaska. Explorers Justine Curgenven and Sarah Outen set out to paddle 2,500km along the archipelago to the nearest road confronting more than 20 long crossings which separate the tiny unpopulated islands. 

Alone for 101 days in one of the windiest, roughest places on earth, these two women are swept away from land by unknown currents, pounded by rough seas and approached by bears. Experiencing an edge-of-your-seat journey, they gain a rare insight into themselves, the rich wildlife and the lives of the few people who live in this harsh yet beautiful landscape.


Just a quick follow up to last weeks email, we now have an Eventbrite page to accompany the Facebook event page for you to register your interest in the event. It would really help us with the planning if we knew the expected numbers. There is plenty of parking and it’s not restricted to club members so the more the merrier.


To book a place  Eventbrite Booking page…….  or  FaceBook Event Page…….    


If you have any questions please feel free to email me matt.giblin@icloud.com or give me a call on 0151 353 4444 Ext 6542.



13/06/16 Eldonian Village Festival - Sat 12 June 2016


Following a request from Greg Brookes (Canal and River Trust) to Liverpool Canal Club; John Fay and myself were asked to act as co-ordinators for the Eldonian Village Festival incorporating the 200 year anniversary of the opening of the Leeds/Liverpool Canal.  Unfortunately John Fay was unavailable as, on the Saturday, he was starting his holidays in Scotland


This event is part of the Canal and River Trust 2016 National Campaign Festival and organisers aim to increase leisure activities on a relatively under used part of the Leeds/Liverpool Canal as well as promote the event in celebration of the bi-centenary of the canal.  The section of the canal had been recently improved as part of The Desmond Family Canoe Trail.  The trail, the longest of its kind in the UK, will stretch for 150 miles connecting Liverpool to Goole along the Leeds & Liverpool Canal and Aire & Calder Navigation. Travelling through Wigan, Blackburn, Burnley, Leeds and Skipton it will take the average paddler between five and seven days to complete.  More information……


Parking was provided by Safe Regeneration, on Waverley Street, Bootle, just a short walk away from the canal.  Having been warmly welcomed on arrival, thirteen participating kayakers portaged our
kayaks to the canal where, to our surprise, we found a decorated gazebo where orange drinks in fluted glasses were being handed out!


Our instructions were to take part in a flotilla of kayaks, canoes and barges following the 'Pride of Sefton 2', the community barge which offers free trips to under-privileged and disabled people as well as educational trips for the local community.  These trips are financed through a combination of donations, grants and commercial trips made available to the general public.


To add to the festive spirit brightly coloured punch bag balloons were attached to some of the kayaks and following a toot on my Miss Kitty hooter the 'Pride' followed suit with a couple of base tone blasts.


We waited for the 'Pride' and the 'Beatty' to pass and then continued to paddle behind into unknown waters.  The canal is lined on either side by grassy verges and a tow path above which were unfamiliar buildings, factories, car breaker yards etc.  As we neared our destination we discovered that the canal veers right to a series of locks which link the Eldonian Village to the Stanley Dock, giving access to Princess Dock, the Pier Head and eventually the Albert Dock in the heart of Liverpool.


We paddled on for another 100 yards, the canal bank by this time being occupied by hundreds of visitors all enjoying the festival atmosphere.  On either side of us were decorated barges, covered with coloured bunting, either waiting to or coming from the Liverpool City dock system.  As we approached the end of the canal tributary we were met by shouts of "Hello Julie" from Clive and Brendan, members of the Liverpool Watersports Centre, who were organising free canoe rides for both adults and children.


Once out of the kayaks (being safely racked up) our group stretched their legs, explored the festivities and the 'trade' stand tents, and mentioning no names were clearly visible by the food stands!!!  Just by our exit point was the Inland Waterway Authority's 'stand' and Greg Brookes (no relation).  


By now it was time to leave and we left to toots from all the barges and lots of shouts, cheers and waves from the general public.


It was lovely taking part in the festival, paddling through unknown waters, and we arrived back at our exit point with smiles from ear to ear and, believe it or not, dry.  Weren't we lucky with the weather!


Julie Brookes, co-ordinator.  Paddlers:  Alison Fenn, Michaila Worrall, Robin Emley, Paul Larne, Alastair Kennedy, Robbie Smith, Zoe Maynard, Anna Neilsson, Alex Peacock, Aaron Jackson, Ian Colwyn, Craig Ellingham.     More Photos…..





13/06/16 Junior Club “munchies on the water” this Tuesday 14th June

This Tuesday the Junior Club are having “munchies on the water” when they paddle up to “seal launch city” (A landing area in front of the Echo Arena).  Please feel free to bring something eat (Sweets, Crisps, Apple or fruit or some cake).  Do not worry if you do not get time to get something as there will be plenty to share.


Parents are welcome to paddle with the juniors or wait for their return at the Marina.   See you all there.

13/06/16 Junior Trip Lazy River Paddle

We'd been at Four Mile Bridge for a few hours, playing, swimming and jumping in the white water, when Keith suggested going down the inland sea ( a.k.a.- the lazy river)  and he put me as the leader ! So I led everyone down the river. We had to stop a few times whilst people capsized, often deliberately, but eventually we got to the place that we wanted to go.


Whilst we waited for the tide to change, so we could get a free ride back, me and the other kids did sand diving, jumping into the river and had water races whilst the adults took photos and laughed at us. It turned out that by the time we could go back, none of us wanted to get out, so most of us had the 'genius' idea of pushing the boats and each other, whilst walking in the shallow water. When we got back to the Four Mile Bridge, the flow was still going the same way so we had a bit of an uphill challenge but everyone made it successfully through the bridge. Then to get back to the campsite, we had to battle with the quicksand and the rocks. It took a while but again we made it! The whole weekend was a great success and everyone had a boss time. Thank you!!!  


(by Nieve Mannion  Aged 12)    More Photos…..


13/06/16 Great Orme 12/6/2016

A short notice paddle saw Mike, Andy and Kris meet at Llandudno for a quick sea paddle around the Orme and back. It had to be quick because I only had enough change for 4 hours worth of on street parking!


We set off an hour before low water not knowing what the weather was going to do. Reports had the wind coming from N, E, S and W, but luckily it wasn't strong.


Paddling with the last of the ebb saw us all catch a few waves as we rounded the first headland and left the many sights of Llandudno (Zimmer frames, walking sticks and little old ladies spitting on to handkerchiefs to clean non existent dirt of a child’s cheek) behind.


Under the majestic cliffs we made excellent progress and were accompanied by many sea birds and young seals. All too soon we reached West Shore for lunch. A quick bite to eat and then do it all again with the flooding tide pushing us on our way to beat the awaiting traffic police!


Do it again soon


Mike Alter


08/06/16 Liverpool Marina Update

The Liverpool Marina has had a make-over and the bar and restaurant is now called “The Quayside”.   All discounts to the Yacht Club, Berth holders and to our members` access cards have been discontinued.  There is a plan to bring in a new discount / points card but this is not ready yet and we have no further details.   The Marina has also stopped issuing new swipe cards for the moment (Maybe due to the new card system that will tie in with the new tills).  Please bear with us as we have been given very little information or warning on this.


For the moment we still have access to the changing rooms and showers using your existing swipe card but please ensure that no water goes on the floor and do not let anyone in without their own card.   For the moment, the swipe cards still access the pontoons and kayak storage area but we are looking into moving these to a better area with easier access to the water.


08/06/16 Junior Club Camping weekend based at 4 Mile Bridge (Pen-Y-Bont Farm LL65 3EY)

Friday - Sunday, 10-12 Jun 2016 

This weekend is specifically for our junior members and we will only be paddling on the Inland Sea, and possibly sheltered bays or rocky headlands. All paddlers will need a helmet!  (Spares in the shed at the dock) Please only book on if you are willing to paddle with the juniors all weekend.

If you want to join us please let us know by reserving a place. (Please pay me when you arrive)  Click here to reserve a place……

Pitch with Electric Hook Up £18
One Tent,one adult, one child ,car £10 (extra child £2 )
Tent, two adults,up to two children, car £15 Electric £3

We only have 35 places on this campsite which is 30m from the water at 4 Mile Bridge. More information....

You MUST be a full member of the club to paddle with us

Liverpool Canoe Club is open to all and aims "to provide the maximum canoeing and kayaking opportunities for all its members". This is an extra, specialist event and is part of the provision provided under our Top Club Gold equality policy.....


08/06/16 Pembroke Bank Holiday Weekend

We stayed at Whitesands Campsite, Tan-y-Bryn SA62 6PS Camping Right Next to the Beach.

Situated on the most Westerly tip of South Wales. Camping Right Next to Whitesands Beach overlooking the Bay and Ramsey Island. One of the best surfing beaches in the country. A spectacular beach side setting, ideal camping location and close to St Davids (2 miles).

The area produces excellent surf, good mountain biking, coastal walks, climbing and some rock pools. It is easier to get to than Woolacombe. There is the Bitches (advanced whitewater playspot) and excellent Sea Kayaking around Ramsey Island and St Davids. If you wish to keep an eye on the surf forecast take a look at http://magicseaweed.com/Whitesands-Bay-Surf-Report/136/


08/06/16 Short boating in Pembroke…..

After a thundery drive on Friday everyone pitched up to a brilliant sea view in Whitesands Bay for a sunny weekend with hardly a breath of wind.

With only ankle biter surf and calm seas on Saturday the short boaters headed off in two groups, either cycling or paddling the coast around Strumble Head. Hopping from cave to cave, under aches and  through slots between rocks heading west from Aber Mawr beach we found ourselves in a whopping cave that grumbled with the rise and fall of the sea. After exploring in the hot sun Trevor and Val lead the group to a Jelly Bean stop at Pwllcrochan before returning to camp for the traditional LCC BBQ.

Sunday was again another sunny day with a split in the short boat group. Some staying on the beach to play in the small clean surf while others ventured out to the Bitches in the safety of neap tides and calm weather. After a morning of playing on the surging waves we returned via St David’s for an ice cream. Bakewell tart and Mascarpone with Fig were new on the menu for this year!

In the afternoon a few played in the diminishing surf while others walked up Carn Llidi, the rock outcrop beside the camp for panoramic views before sunset.

Cheers, Jenny B   More Photos……


08/06/16 Pembroke Bank Holiday Weekend - Whitesands to Abereiddy

On Saturday the long boaters explored "every rock and cave" for a few kilometres north of Whitesands, before heading out to sea a few hundred metres to watch porpoises and begin an hour of continuous paddling to reach Abereiddy.  Lunch was eaten on the beach at Abereiddy. 

Refreshed, they spent time in the Blue Lagoon watching the coasteerers jumping off the old quarry buildings and checked-out the waterfall on the south side of the bay, accompanied by a seal.  The rocks and caves that were missed on the journey north were explored on the return journey.  The absence of surf at Whitesands made made the final landing uneventful.  It was an enjoyable trip in near perfect conditions.

Andy Hains              
More Photos……

Mieke and Kris


Andy Hains


Mark, Vicky and Robin explore a cave


After a pre-trip brief from Andy Garland near the slipway, it was only a short walk down to the shoreline.  We soon reached the tip of St Davids Head which - thanks to careful planning - was very easy to get around with the tide to assist.  Not long after starting, we were briefly joined by Emma on her surf-ski who soon breezed off into the distance at great speed. 


With a party of 9 sea-kayaks, progress was not particularly rapid; there were too many interesting places to explore.  After an hour or so, we decided to leave the shore and head directly towards a distant headland which would hopefully provide a good place for lunch.  While making this crossing in a loose formation, we were rewarded by seeing several dolphins - or maybe they were porpoises. 


While taking our lunch on the beach at Abereiddy, Emma was seen to be rapidly paddling back towards base but no direct contact was made.  One of our party did try to catch up with her but to no avail.  Just beyond the beach is the Blue Lagoon, a deep quarry left over from mining days.  It is now open to the sea, and very picturesque.  Several rubber-clad youngsters were hurling themselves into the water from great heights.  This same location is apparently used for a Red Bull event where people jump down from the top of the cliff.  Peering up from our vantage point at sea-level, that feat looked beyond belief.


With the ebb tide to assist, our return journey was very straightforward.  St David's Head was easily rounded, and seemed no big deal.  A couple of days later, with the tide aginst me, I was to find that the conditions there could be a lot more challenging.   


Thanks to all who planned this trip and made it happen


Robin Emley          More Photos……

08/06/16 Sunday 29 May – Ramsey Island: fake birds, real paddling.


The trip around Ramsey Island is one of the great classics for sea kayakers and I now understand why. It offers everything to make a paddler happy: a long ferry glide, rock hopping, some fast moving water, stunning scenery and more!


Nine of us set off from Porthclais harbour by noon. Many people had the same excellent idea, so we were not alone and the toughest part of the day may well have been to find car park! We were a mixed bunch of paddlers, ranging from experienced to “improvers” and Kathy who is more into rivers but felt like having a try in a sea kayak – certainly not bad for a first trip! Steve with his local knowledge soon became the unofficial group leader and briefed us all before setting off.  The start of the trip was chilled and consisted of a short paddle, maybe 30 minutes, West along the coast. After rounding a small headland, Ramsey Island came into view and we teamed up for the ferry glide towards the Southern end of Ramsey Island. Even though we were on neap tides, the current in the Ramsey Sound, which was a North going flood at that point, was around 3 knots. The ferry glide worked well, maybe because some of us were very motivated to avoid the Bitches at all cost! The Bitches is a series of rocks on the East side of the island, known for tide races which apparently can make people scream of joy but also scream for their mother depending on their sense of humour and “to some extent” also paddling skills.


Anyway, we happily avoided the Bitches only to find Midland Gap which was impressive enough for some of us (including Yours Truly). It is a gap between Ramsey Island and a smaller adjacent island which funnels the flow and looks quite like a river. We passed it East to West, all dry and well, to find ourselves at the West coast of Ramsey Island. Lovely! The coast line is stunning; with lots of gullies and caves to explore (there was very little swell), and views West to some more little islands (Bishops and Clerks).


Now, some interesting conversations took place on that Western coat of Ramsey Island that day. Some of us spotted white “thingies” on the high grassy slopes. Admittedly, based on visual observation, the hypothesis that these “thingies” were puffins could not be rejected. However, I knew puffins were not breeding on Ramsey, and moreover you never have hundreds of puffins just sitting there, still, with not a single one flying ever. They are birds. They like to fly. So to me they were not puffins, but I had to admit they sort of looked like it. But immobile. I and some others went with “they must be flowers that for some reason grow in groups of two”. Hmmm. Others went with “no they are puffins, but why don’t they move”. Hmmm. I guess we all had our moments where we doubted our sanity so we quickly agreed they were puffins, just because that would have been very nice. Later that day Robin had a chat with someone on the campsite (which normally never happens ;-)) who mentioned something about a BBC programme, and fake puffins. Hmmm...? http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-south-west-wales-13037617


After lunch and having reached the Northern tip of the island, we found ourselves, as planned, in slack water at around 3pm. We wisely avoided Horse Rock – it wasn’t really visible but we decided not to take chances. Horse rocks lies in the middle of the sound, usually submerged and close to the lifeboat station (maybe not a coincidence) and apparently can create whirlpools that capsize yachts.  We lazily floated past the Bitches from a safe distance, enjoying the increasing flow and the smooth ride. (Interestingly, the reliable flow here has led to a test project on submerged tidal energy generation: http://www.tidalenergyltd.com/?page_id=650).


We made it back to Porthclais which treated us to a long’ish portage in mud, but it was all very much worth it. And the ice cream stall was still open :-). We’ll be back, and a little voice says we might explore these Bitches just a bit closer, like our friends in the little boats had done that very same day...


Paddlers: Steve Chisholm, Andy Garland, Andy Hains, Katrhyn Wilson, Mark Steward, Vicky Steward, Robin Emley, Mieke De Lathouwers, Kris D’Août


Kris D’Août                      More Photos…..


08/06/16 Monday 30 May


Emma went for her early morning training run in her racing surf ski heading off around the headland.  There was no surf but the sun rose and so did the temperatures.


After a Lazy start many people took the advantage of a quick go in Emma’s surf ski when she returned mid-morning.  They either pottered around the beach or had a last cycle before the drive home. 


The "real" sea kayakers had a gentle paddle between Porthclais and Solva, rockhopping, exploring caves and watching climbers coasteering or "deep water soloing" on almost smooth rock faces (climbing wthout ropes - if they fall off they just get wet!).



Robin dressed for the sunny conditions


Sally and Rob


Trevor Strain





This article originally appeared in Adventure Kayak, Spring 2012 by C. Mihell


It’s only when we pull out a chart and compare it to reality that my friend Craig and I realize the magnitude of the endeavour we’re about to attempt. Our destination, tiny Caribou Island, a mop-topped sandbank in the heart of Lake Superior, lies 22 nautical miles from our gravel beach on the south shore of Michipicoten Island. Today, the yawning gulf of open water depicted on the chart is represented in real life by a swirling mass of gauzy fog.

A quick compass bearing taken on the chart reveals the truth: To stray merely 2.5 degrees on either side of our intended bearing would see us paddling over 100 kilometres until we hit the nearest land. Even the best-made plans would have us playing a dangerous game of dice. We’re fogbound.


Dead reckon

Don Brookes paddling in <30m visibility, Georgia Bay, Canada.  Click for more on LCC Trip….


Before setting off in the fog, measure the distance of your intended route using a map or chart. Then estimate your time of passage by dividing the distance by your average paddling speed. Keep tabs of your progress on the water with a wristwatch, and have a backup plan just in case your target doesn’t appear on time. This usually means a direct bearing to the nearest sizeable point of land.


Aim off

Always err on the side of caution when planning a low-visibility crossing. Intentionally follow a compass bearing toward a prominent landmass or ‘backstop’ adjacent to your destination. Aiming off is especially important in currents and windy conditions, or on long crossings, where the risks of messing up are considerably higher.


Trust your compass

While GPS units are handy for gauging your speed, the distance from your destination, and adjusting to the vagaries of wind and current, a deck-mounted compass is your best ally in navigating low-visibility conditions because of its simple, hands-free operation. So long as you’ve remembered to pack the cooking pots and canned beans in the back hatch, a compass is also extremely accurate. Deploy your rudder or skeg while following a compass course to keep on track.


Group Dynamics

Clearly defined lead and tail-end-Charlie roles help while navigating in the fog. The leader follows a compass course while the paddler at the rear of the pack confirms the group's progress on the bearing. In dense fog, visibility can be just a few feet so sticking close together to maintain visual contact is essential.


Rules of the Road

If you must cross shipping lanes in foggy conditions, use your VHF radio to inform mariners of your intended route and time of passage. Rumour has it that placing a wad of tinfoil beneath your hat works as a radar deflector, but don’t count on its effectiveness.



It’s always more interesting, safer and less stressful to paddle a few extra miles and follow the coastline rather than striking off in the fog across open water when the option exists.


06/06/16 VHF Short Range Marine Radio Course


Congratulations to the 6 LCC sea kayakers who, despite having their brains boiled recently in an extremely hot classroom at the marina, all passed their marine band VHF Short Range course and exam.


All being well we'll be running another one of these in the autumn when it’s likely to be a lot cooler. 


Robin Emley - Pass

Neil Lee-Gallon - Pass

Julian Todd - Pass

Graham Hudson - Pass

Anneliese Trigg - Pass

Peter Thompson - Pass

Andrew Garland - Pass


Pete Thomas

06/06/16 Dove Point to New Brighton

Earlier in the week we had received a "heads up" email from Mike Alter about a possible sea trip on Saturday. This was either to Hilbre or from Dove Point to New Brighton and back. We were very interested and awaited the weekend and the weather conditions. Mike and the others decided that Hilbre was the destination for their trip but Julie had Dove Point fixed in her mind. In fairness we have done Hilbre several times already this year.

"Can we do Dove Point?" Julie asked. "Please say yes" she wrote in the Friday email. Well, what can you say to that!


So at 8.30am on Saturday morning we met at Meols next to the slipway and gazed across the vast expanse of sand. No water! Well not yet. In about half an hour it would steadily creep up and cover that sand. And that was our signal to launch.


Following the deeper channel we made steady progress out and headed along the coast. We hadn't gone a couple of hundred yards before the cags had to come off. It was so warm.


We had both chosen to paddle our cross over kayaks so not as fast as we could have gone but nevertheless after an hour we reached the small beach at Moreton. In the distance we could make out two small craft heading towards us. This turned out to be two sit-on-top paddlers. One was on their first trip out this year and the young girl on her very first kayak trip ever. After a brief chat we went our opposite ways certain we would meet again on the return leg of our journeys.


Another hour and we reached our destination. The lighthouse at Perch Rock looked grand as the sea swirled around it. Behind it the large ships and the Stena line ferry were making their way out to sea. After a few photos we paddled around the fort to the small beach and then conscious of the time headed back to Meols.


As predicted we once again met the two paddlers and we were eager to find out if the new kayaker had liked her experience. Of course she had. How could you not? Drifting on a calm sea with lovely weather thrown in. The tide had turned now and our thoughts turned to consider the long and muddy walk if we didn't make it back to the slipway in time.


Past Moreton beach we went. We could see the cardinals ahead but were surprised at how far past them the slipway was. The surface of the water was now turning a light sandy colour as the sandbanks were being uncovered by the outgoing tide. This was going to be a close thing!


Paddling hard we headed towards the slipway winding from side to side to find the deeper stretches of water to paddle in. The bottoms of our kayaks were now scraping the sandy bed. We were going to end up walking. We were sure of it. But no! Despite our fears we managed to land on a nice solid piece of slipway.

It was a hard last half hours paddling and probably one we could have avoided if we hadn't stopped chin wagging for so long.


Well we did it. Julie's desire to paddle Dove Point to New Brighton had become reality. It was a great trip and one we would certainly do again.  John Fay and Julie Bookes    More Photos……

04/06/16 Paddle on Leeds Liverpool canal Bootle to Eldonian Village and Return - coordinator Julie Brookes.

Saturday, 11 Jun 2016 12pm - 2pm

This is part of the Inland Waterway Association National Festival at Eldonian village and we have been asked to take part as part of a flotilla of kayaks, canoes and barges. It is about 4 miles there and back and starts from the Little Merton Pub in Bootle.   Any canoe or kayak.   You can borrow boats from the club for this local event but please email number of boat requested and we will let you know how it can be picked up on Saturday.

If you would like to go please book a place so that we can send you final details, post code to meeting place etc https://v1.bookwhen.com/t4us5/201606111200/eeb

More details to follow.....


03/06/16 The Hilbre Island Sea Kayak Race organised and run by Liverpool Canoe Club Sunday 3rd July 2016

This is a club run event with safety cover with Ribs and Kayaks.  There are 3 courses so there is something for all abilities and we hope it will be a fun event for general club members as well as the more serious racers.   I would encourage everyone to consider entering – club boats are available on a first come basis (Some are already booked out).   You do not need a sea kayak for the Little Eye and West Kirby Races.  We have a BBQ afterwards using the Dee Sailing Club House and facilities.  It would be great to see more of you supporting the event.

Click here for more information and to enter…..

Race Start 2015Hilbre Island is the largest of a group of three islands at the mouth of the estuary of the River Dee, and lies about 1.6 km from Red Rocks, the nearest part of the mainland on the Wirral Peninsula.

The Start is at Dee Sailing club (CH61 0HN) START TIME 
10:00 am with a beach (Le Mans style) mass start (Seeded start line). The finish will be a buoy on the water in line with the causeway.

Prize giving and BBQ will be in the club house after the event. (BBQ items and drinks can be purchased from the club house) The main Hilbre Island Race goes clockwise around all three islands (13km) while a shorter race for General Purpose and touring boats goes clockwise around the first island (Little Eye). We also have a short junior and novice race along the shore to West Kirby and return.

Conditions can be very rough on the northern end of Hilbre and anyone entering the Hilbre Island Race needs to be sure that they can cope with the conditions on the day.

If conditions are too rough then modified courses may be used. We have a number of safety craft covering the race. Several kayak rescue teams will also be positioned on the end of Hilbre Island.

Places are limited to the first 50 entrants. 
Hilbre Race (13Km) - Sea Kayaks, Ladies Sea Kayaks, Tandem Sea kayaks, Racing Surf Skis, High-performance Sea Kayaks.
Little Eye Race (9Km) - First Kayak, Ladies Race, Doubles (any design)
West Kirby Race (4Km) - First Kayak (under 4m), First Junior (under 16), First Open Canoe.

You will need to pre-enter online and bring with you on the day a completed registration form.

Supported by YambaUK Dee Sailing Club, System X, Go Kayaking North West, Cedar Boats Europe and Manchester Canoes

YambaUK   Dee Sailing Club   System X   go Kayaking 
 Cedar Boats of Europe  Manchester Canoes





01/06/16 June Photo of the Month Competition – Click here to vote for your favourite.    


Outer Hebrides

Jenny and Sophie on a Pembrokeshire wave

Mieke and Kris








Isthmus in the Caolas an Eilean

Aleksander paddling stand up

Sam Preston on the Tees Barrage










Caz on Lewis – Outer Hebrides

Sarah Gille on the Tees Barrage


The Bitches during the Pembroke Weekend


01/06/16 Emma Broberg

Some of you may have met Emma Broberg, our visiting Danish paddler with the very long Racing Ski.  Emma was in the Danish Olympic K1 racing kayak squad before moving over to surfski paddling. She is currently a Nordic Kayak sponsored paddler and is over in England for a few weeks in between training for the European Championships in Italy later in the year.  After a 6 week spell with Everton in the Community programme Emma will travel around the UK competing in a number of surf ski events.

Emma has thrown herself at everything to do with paddle sport while in Liverpool, including a trip to Stanley wave, the Tees Barrage and the Pembroke Bank Holiday Weekend.  Thanks to Robin transporting her boat on his Peugot 105 she was able to clock up the miles in the good weather including a solo paddle around Ramsey Island in under 3 hours.



31/05/16 Newsletter Published 
Please open it by clicking this link June Newsletter…… or via the website   More Archived Newsletters…..

To check your membership details go to Login button on website or click here….      If you have forgotten your password click here….. to have a new one emailed to you. (Please note that some ISP`s may block our automated system so please contact membership@liverpoolcanoeclub.co.uk if you have problems)