Friday, April 30, 2021

Practice revival


In August 2009 Graham O posted a message on the then kayak message board inviting paddlers to practice skills in St. Philips.  He opened it to Paddle Canada level II certified paddlers.  I had no certification, and still don't today, but that wasn't going to stop me.  I went demonstrated a roll and I was in.  There were four of us the first night.

Graham moved and in 2010 I thought the 2009 sessions were so beneficial I thought to continue the practices which did so until 2017.  By then they started to fizzle out as attendance dropped to a few every evening.

In 2020 there were a few session and it looked to have gained new momentum with Sean organizing.  Last evening there were 15 eager newer paddlers and some old hands.

People showed up over time as the early arrivals paddled around the cove at St. Philips knocking the rust off of different paddle strokes and a few rolls.  With everyone on the water various rescues were practiced, here an assisted rescue as Dean scrambles back into his kayak.

Johnny doing a back deck scramble on self rescue.

Sean showing of his sculling brace in his Greenland style Black Pearl.

Cathy jumped into the water to teach newer paddler Kelly how to complete an assisted rescue.

Dean being the rescue subject of an injured paddler doing a scoop rescue with Brian and Florence assisting.

The sea was calm making it an ideal first evening.  Over the summer I hope Thursday evening practices will continue.  The sea state will not always be as calm but that is the point of practice - rescue competence when it is needed and where everyone in the group has a role whether someone takes charge and directs the rescue or completes the rescue.

A fine start and a welcome infusion of newer paddlers bringing vigour, passion and excitement!

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