Fardon – Eccleston River Dee paddle 14th of May by Dorin Wang
Our day started by meeting our brilliant leaders James and Mike at Farndon. Before we set off, James gave a brief introduction about what to expect on the paddling trip by speaking with a polite, soothing, and informative tone on his open canoe with his adorable son, Sebastian. Mike then cruised by on his paddleboard in his usually calm manner.
Eight of us embarked on the journey with two open canoes and four paddleboards shortly after the welcoming briefing. Mike, a club member who I’ve paddle boarded with regularly, and his brother-in-law, Dave were speedy on their open canoe as they have been training for their trip to Utah in the summer. Victor and David, my besties from skating, finally became more ‘civilised’ since they’ve been distracted by paddleboarding!
We couldn’t have asked for better weather. The sun was shining and warm while the breeze kept us cool. The water was rather tranquil and a lot of areas we paddled through resembled some scenic sites in Kyoto! I even felt I was abroad intermittently.
After the 4.5miles of paddling, we stopped for a bottle of champagne and caviar (in my dream!). Lunch by the river was lovely mainly because of the banters and knowledge shared by all the lovely members. James grabbed the chance to enhance our independent paddling ability by fabricating various scenarios/incidents and inviting us to brainstorm with some sensible actions.
After lunch, Mike lent me his special fin, which made me feel like I’ve got a motor engine on my paddleboard, as the board felt sturdier and went rather fast. Sebastian, despite only being eight years old, then shared his extensive knowledge about birds with me and reminded me not to trust Google solely. I was tempted to invite him as a guest lecturer to LJMU to teach my students to remain dubious about non-academic sources online!
The conversation with the little man, made the remaining part of the paddling much more tolerable as I was getting fatigued by then. After a short break for G&T, I mean water…, we powered through the rest of the paddle. Mike even jumped into the river deliberately to demonstrate a self-rescue on the paddleboard. I think the main reason was really because it was such a beautiful day, and he was dying for a swim!
In total, we did an 8.81mile paddle between Farndon and Eccleston in just 2.40 hours of paddling.
Thanks a lot, to James and Mike for organising this trip. I have been ‘forced’ into writing up this report unanimously but feel extremely honoured actually.