Folding Kayaks Forum

Looking for paddling partners in Yorkshire, UK May 2017
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Author:  KerryOnKayaks [ Sun Mar 12, 2017 6:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Looking for paddling partners in Yorkshire, UK May 2017

I've arranged a trip to the Yorkshire Dales region in Britain for this coming May (2017) and am bringing a fold ing kayak with me. I've rented a cottage northeast of York and will have a rental car. Planning some hill walking adventures, visiting historic sites and some day paddling trips from the River Ouse in York to the harbor at Whitby on the North Sea.

Don't know yet if I will be solo -- I tend to plan trips and then invite friends to join me if their budgets and schedules allow it (I have multiple folders so any of them can take a boat and gear as well.)

If anyone here on the boards lives in this area and would like to meet up for an outing while I am there, or if there are folks who will also be visiting the region then (or would like to) send me a PM.

I'm an experienced, well-organized but laid back and flexible traveling companion. Some of my best trips in the past have been with people that I never met in person before we did the trip, including several with members of the opposite [...] that were purely platonic. I'm in my 60's but physically fit (partially due to hanging out with a lot of active younger people). I can easily hike 10 to 12 miles on moderate terrain or paddle all day at a leisurely pace.

i would also welcome tips from anyone who has visited the Yorkshire region. I was there 20 years ago but it was on one of those dreadful bus tours (my mother's idea) where you ride in the coach for an hour while getting a lecture, then have as little as 15 minutes free to explore any stop along the way (maximum stop I recall was 90 minutes but that included an arranged lunch) before being herded like sheep back into the bus. I hope to revisit many of the places that I never had the time to really appreciate.

Author:  Jake [ Mon Mar 13, 2017 2:06 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Looking for paddling partners in Yorkshire, UK May 2017

Seems like a wonderful expedition what with both hiking and paddling. Which of your Pakboats will you be taking with you?

Author:  idc [ Thu Mar 16, 2017 6:04 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Looking for paddling partners in Yorkshire, UK May 2017

Hi Kerry,
I've not visited Yorkshire for paddling purposes (have been to York a few times as a tourist/visiting friends), but if you'd like to paddle with locals you could introduce yourself on the website and post in their meetup section. Although it is formally an open canoeing site rather than kayaking, it is very friendly and there are loads of people there who do kayaks as well as open canoes. I've taken my folding kayaks to sotp meetups in various places around the country and been made very welcome—occasionally good-natured ribbing about 'bring a proper canoe next time'. Someone will recommend routes you could follow or point you at blogs of paddles in Yorkshire. And I expect someone would be able to put you in touch with local canoe clubs (in UK 'canoe' is used for both kayaks and open canoes).

There is a useful resource for planning journeys on UK rivers and canals called paddlepoints (I forget if it is .net, I think it is; forgive me for not checking). It has a zoom in map which shows get-ins and take-outs, and can also be searched by river name (which I find works better for me) and sometimes has other points of interest (such as places where there is a history of difficulties with fishermen—a few rivers in England and Wales, by no means all, have a low-level dispute about whether or not fishing syndicates can 'own' a river and prevent paddlers' navigation; the consensus among paddlers is that they can not). Canals formally require a licence to navigate on them. In practice whether you'd ever meet someone likely to check a licence is another matter.

Hope that helps. I'm out of the country for much of May or I'd be tempted to try and join you myself, though it's a fair distance from Cambridge where I'm based. (A bit of me is also tempted by your xt-15, though as the owner of several folding kayaks, I hardly need another boat. I think I had better restrain myself ...)
All the best,

Author:  KerryOnKayaks [ Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:37 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Looking for paddling partners in Yorkshire, UK May 2017

A much delayed response: I did, indeed, reach out via the UK "song of the paddle" forums last Spring and had no less than 4 responses from people in the Yorkshire area within 24 hours! I corresponded with all of them and discovered that the town I was going to be staying in (Malton) has a very active canoe/kayak club with their own clubhouse and dock on the River Derwent.

In fact, the afternoon that I arrived at my rental cottage, two club members who lived nearby dropped by to welcome me less than an hour after I checked in, still groggy from 3 flights (one overnight) and two layovers in 20 hours. We arranged to paddle both Saturday and Sunday, first on the River Rye, which literally flowed through the farm where I was staying, and then on the River Derwent, from Malton down to the historic Howsham Mill near Kirkham Abbey.

The weather was gorgeous, other than a slight misty shower early Saturday (it was England, so a "spot of damp" was to be expected) and the scenery was lovely, as was the company. The first outing was 4 of us in kayaks (the club members were in short whitewater boats, which were well suited to the narrow and winding stream, though there were no rapids other than a short class 1 chute just after the launch). The second day we were joined by a father and daughter (and their sheepdog, Ira) in pack canoes, and midway through the trip that day when we stopped for lunch near one of the club member's homes (which was along the river route), I left my Pakboat Puffin there and switched to a tandem canoe so that Paul, the trip leader's, dad could join the group. We had to negotiate 2 weirs, which are a nice feature that the Brits use instead of dams. The long built-out ramps have a notch or two in the lip that allows enough flow for a boat to slip down and there is no dangerous boil at the base due to the angle of the drop.

We paddled through shady willow groves and past farms, wild meadows, cow and sheep pastures, tiny quaint hamlets, ruined abbeys and stone bridges. Saw lots of birds and wild flowers and the occasional sleek little commuter train flying by on the barely noticeable rail line that often came near the rivers. It was so charming and pastoral, I almost felt like Ratty and Mole from "The Wind in the Willows" would come floating by in their little canoe.

The canoe club members were very generous and welcoming and the outings were the highlight of my trip. As it turned out, I could have borrowed boat and gear from their club livery, something to keep in mind for the future (though hauling the folder and gear on the trip proved quite workable and it is nice to have your own familiar boat.) I would love to go back and join the club again on further paddling adventures -- maybe next Summer. It really does seem that Brits are more oriented to outdoor recreation than Americans and their communities make more adaptations to allow public access to hiking trails and paddling routes, with parking and comfort facilities. At Howsham Mill, which is a restored medieval grain mill that has been converted to a local mini power generating facility with a water turbine and two Archimedes screws, the planners added a whitewater slalom play park in the millrace rapids!

Author:  scotjack [ Wed Oct 18, 2017 5:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Looking for paddling partners in Yorkshire, UK May 2017

For your next trip, why not come to Montenegro? If you have access to a Turkish Airlines hub, fares off-season are incredibly low. I am traveling tomorrow from Houston to Montenegro for <$900 round trip! We have a house there, and on my last visit (August) I took with me my Folbot Greenland II free of charge - you can't beat that! Kayaking in the Adriatic, and especially in Kotor Bay where our house is located, is spectacular. Water temperature in summer is around 26-27 Celsius, and even now is around 23 Celsius. If you prefer fast water there is a very deep river gorge - deepest in Europe, I hear, but I have not tried it yet.
Tomorrow I am taking out a Folbot Aluet and an upwind sailing kit for the Greenland - both bought from members of the Forum. So if you, or any other members of the Forum want to spend a few days with us, we can get you afloat with ease. So far my paddles are just standard-garden-variety Folbot aluminium and plastic, but I will try to get some better ones out there next year. I am also working on getting my Klepper Passat and Master out there too, but don't mention it to my wife!


Folbot Greenland II (soon with upwind sail)
Folbot Aluet
Klepper Passat
Klepper Master
Various other boats

Author:  KerryOnKayaks [ Thu Oct 19, 2017 5:54 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Looking for paddling partners in Yorkshire, UK May 2017

What a generous invitation, Scottjack! I'll certainly give it some thought -- Montenegro seems beautiful. The couple I bought my Feathercraft Wisper from 10 years ago had taken it on a month-long vacation, paddling and camping ashore (they each had a Wisper) from the Adriatic to the Aegean, though I think they started in Albania. They shared their photos from the trip with me and the coastlines and beaches looked fantastic.

How often do you visit there? I have a friend who has been trying to persuade me to join him on one of his annual trips to Cappadocia in Turkey, where he has friends -- maybe I can convince him to combine one of those trips with a stop in Montenegro to kayak in the future. I looked on VRBO for rentals on Kotor Bay (to get a feel for the area) and it looks like an incredible place to visit and to kayak. Have you traveled up to the mountainous region around Durmitor? I've added Montenegro to my "must see" list.

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