The first party arrived at Llangollen on Friday afternoon. You couldn't have asked for better weather or scenery.
Wern Isaf Farm
Tents pitched, beers out, the fun started. Chris did threaten to get the twister game out whilst waiting for the rest of the motley crew to arrive but beers, a bbq and chatting took preference.
Morning started with Chris playing mum by cooking some bacon butties, then off to JJ’s to tackle, in my case, the river Dee.
We split into two groups. Chris’s group and Ivan’s group being named half way through the day Ivan’s Angels.
Ivan’s Angels were shown and practiced ferry gliding, breaking in and breaking out etc. Most entertaining when you have never done it before.
Even more entertaining were the three drops, epically when I had my first view of the river bed and tiny fish trying to escape my bulging eyes and flapping arms whilst I was trying to get out of my overturned kayak.
Ivan was at hand to make sure I was ok and both Ivan and Melanie did a great job in keeping my confidence up.
Ivan’s Angels did all three drops round JJ’s and it was great to watch other people going over the drops and play in the bottom of them.
Gary and his assistant Rolo were taking photos of all the days activities.
Saturday night we all went to a brilliant choice of Chris’s, an Italian restaurant called Fouzi’s apart from Rob G as he thought that watching England play football (if that’s what you can call it) was a better choice (ed – a brave man to be doing this in North Wales).
Later some of the CAP group went on to a pub and I heard Rob E decided to walk along the wall of the bridge in his drunken state.
After a cold night of trying to sleep we woke to another glorious sunny day. After packing away the tents we made our way to Horseshoe falls.
Ivan’s Angels looked worried and the main question was “where are we getting on this part of the river?” Ivan gave us our instructions but it was a battle for us all. Sue ended up going backwards down the first part with Ivan in hot pursuit, I decided to park myself on a rock and stay there and in the distance, I could hear Mel being quite firm with Ivan.
Once we got going, we were heading towards Serpents tail. Once again, I scared the fish while Ivan rescued the kayak, after making sure I was ok. Ivan’s Angels then parked their kayaks so we could watch our more experienced paddlers ride the Serpents Tail.
Serpents Tail is perfectly named, with all the water disappearing into a narrow channelon river right which will scare the be-jesus out of some. But our brave paddlers did it. Caroline was brilliant to watch as her face said it all. Full of smiles she made her way down. Once at the bottom she shouted. “Can I do it again”?
Gold medal goes to Mike who admitted he was worried but really enjoyed the excitement of making it to the bottom. Then there was Derek. Well what can I say but smooth operator. Yes he did capsize but with ease got himself back up not once but twice.
When everyone had finished with the excitement of the Serpents Tail it was an easy paddle for most, but not all back to JJ’s.
The cars were loaded and home we went. What a great weekend. Thanks to:
Chris for organising this great trip
Ivan for being so patient
Gary and Rolo for the photography
Both Robs, Gary, Chris and Ivan for ferrying everyone about
Mike I hope you enjoyed the rest from all your usual organising