Thursday, 14 November 2013

Foundation Safety and Rescue Training

 "It's a nice day for a Swim" The joke said by many as we headed out to Watkins farm on what can only be described as a very damp day. On the plus side it meant the air temperature was not too cold. We headed out in open canoes to practice the first of our many rescues for the day. The X rescue and the curl (a favourite as it is not so heavy!) We then took a dunking to practice our deep water rescues. The water was a little chilly to say the least. In the afternoon it was the turn of the Kayaks where we mastered the Eskimo rescue and again entered the water for the X rescues.  Josh managed the group well and JP gave us the benefit of his experience as we built confidence in the boats and became "comfortable" in the water.

Day two was very much more pleasant as the sun came out and we started off in Kayaks. Building skills and confidence all the time. Definitely better than sitting in a stuffy office and being able to fully enjoy God's creation. As the sun set the sky turned beautiful shades of orange and purple and the air was cool and crisp. "A good day for a swim" As we enjoyed the challenge of an all in rescue. Planning is always a good idea. We then got out the Sea Kayaks, a majestic craft if handled correctly and very much easier to rescue since the development of new techniques including the barrel roll entry.

On the final day we scraped ice from the windscreen and suited up for the elements a very crisp morning with dragon breath very much in evidence. Jon joined us to check that we'd reached the appropriate standard and reinforced some of the wall leader training we'd received last week....... Preach, Reach, Throw, Tow, Go! Think about your own safety first as you are pretty useless rescuer if you are in trouble yourself. We demonstrated our skills in empty boats for the morning to ensure that time in the water was kept to a minimum. The sun shone and the water was as clear as glass. Lunchtime chat turned to the best places to kayak and the influence of the moon on the tides. In the afternoon due to the temperatures we performed the fastest canoe and kayak rescues we had managed, it is amazing what cold water is as an incentive for speed and efficiency especially with the all in rescues! Thanks for an amazing 3 days on the water go to Josh, JP and Jon.

Just think you could join us next year for this amazing challenge. What other Gap year opportunity has you Swimming in lakes in November? Onward to Archery and the BCU level one course.... bring it.

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