The Third of a series of taught paddles

Beautiful weather and an ebbing tide should have meant an excellent teaching opportunity. Unfortunately, both club members contacted me early cancelling their session.

Should I have gone out without teaching, well yes and I did.

This was a day where I could practice those paddle strokes and techniques that i don’t have time to do whilst teaching others. Low tide must mean practising poling, something not used in a kayak.

For several hours I reminded myself how much I need to continue practising poling. As they say and it is true perfect practice make perfect execution. Put it like this my poling did improved with the practice.

On the occasional puff of wind I broke out the canoe sail, which was fun, whilst it lasted.

Paddle strokes having worked the previous week on both canoe and kayak backstrokes, I was reminded that for the canoe I only taught one type on purpose, so the day offered me the opportunity to work on the other two types. When you don’t use them your skills become rusty. Mine certainly were!!

The day ended on a rising tide. Of course those on the Chiswick Eyot enjoying the sunshine became trapped, so it would seem churlish not to offer transportation. Most people rolled their trousers, skirts up and waded across, but I still managed to pick up two people. One trapped on the mud in front of Chiswick Mall and one lady uncomfortable walking across the water covered causeway.

With those guys safe and sound, I headed around the Eyot, to see if there was anyone else trapped. Having paddled all the around the eyot I didn’t spot anyone, until almost back at Chiswick Mall, where a young couple (I assume mother and son) were trapped on the foreshore almost behind the moored boats. Of course I picked them up and dropped them back to safety.

Whilst back on the pontoon with kit unladen there was an RNLI shout, there was someone I’d missed trapped on the island.

I had a fabulous and eventful day’s paddling.

I get another day off 25 March, another opportunity to amuse myself and remind myself of some of the rusty skills. The following week I am back to teaching – maybe see you there?