Recreational Day Trips (day and evening) for details go here.
No further clinics planned....
Our First Clinic Was Great!
Liz Hawke gave an excellent clinic on basic paddling safety and group paddling etiquette and signals. Those in attendance braced the cold and wind but showed no signs of losing interest in the engaging 1 1/2 hour presentation. At least the wind kept the bugs away! Not only did Liz remind us of the necessary equipment to have on board to meet standards, but she reviewed additional equipment that you can choose from, if you are paddling into more remote areas or in a smaller group or if you just want to be better prepared. She carefully explained why each piece was important so that we could make informed decisions on what to pack on any day trip. Liz also showed how to fit a PFD properly so that it is comfortable and secure. A reminder that if you are stopped by the OPP for an equipment check, You can be fined over $100 PER necessary item that you do not have in your boat. When you borrow a boat from the club house, don't forget to also sign out a PFD ( we have a variety of sizes) if you do not have your own, and your boat safety pack ( bailer, throw rope and whistle). For evening paddles also be sure to pick up a flashlight. (They are stored separately, along with the batteries so that we know they will always be in working order.)
Remember that rules change in the evening hours ( you must have a light in case you do not get back before dark) and at all times if your boat is 18 feet long or longer. Liz emphasized that while it may pass OPP standards to have your life jacket just in the boat during hot weather, she suggested you try putting one on once you are already in the water. Then imagine trying to do that in poor conditions, if you are hurt or not feeling well or in emergency situations. You will see why she so strongly advocates to wear your PFD at all times.
Liz also showed the best way to stow the gear on the boat, with thought to what needs to be readily on hand and what can be stowed in a hatch. She also reviewed the signals we will be using in group paddles to indicate the need to turn, stop, group up, or call for help. Copies of illustrations of these can be found on the bulletin board in the boat house or ask the leader before starting out with the group the next time you join the recreational paddle.
Speaking personally, even though we are experienced paddlers, we learned alot from Liz's talk and went to Algonquin Outfitters ( using our discount that comes with membership) the very next day to stock up on some items to add to our own paddling kits. Liz will be sharing her equipment list with us. We will post it on the website. This is such an important topic that we will consider having a repeat of this essential clinic if enough people show interest. Just send us an email if you are interested.
Our sincere thanks to Liz.
Please look out for and take advantage of upcoming clinics on a variety of skills and topics.
The instructors are very well qualified and both beginner and seasoned paddlers can
improve skills with such experienced instructors. CHECK the website for more information.