White water at Penrith

For those that dont know, Penrith was the white water kayaking stadium built for the 2000 Olympics.  It has up to class 3 rapids on a 300m course with a conveyor to take you back to the top.

I went out today with Wade and Fernando from the NSW Sea Kayak Club.  As it happened, Andrew and Michael H from canoe polo were out there too.

The course was open for 3 hours to recreational paddlers like ourselves.  I was very complacent, only performing one roll before tackling the course.  Without any recent practise and only the one roll in this kayak, I was punished early and came out.  My ego was dented.  I pride myself on tackling Penrith and rolling as required rather than swimming.  Oh well, it wasn’t my first and probably wont be my last swim.  It was a learning opportunity.  Practise more rolls before you start so you’re confident the rolling technique will be there when you need it.  I think did a few practise rolls to get better acquainted to rolling this kayak again and that proved useful; I needed to roll in ernest plenty more times during the day.

I’m gradually getting better at these rapids from very tentative beginnings around 2 years ago.   I think so anyway.  However, I’ve decided, come spring, its time to get some more instruction to push my skills along.

Michael was attempting to do a forward somersaut.  He had no success but good on him for even trying.  There were plenty of spills for us to watch. 

While surfing a wave, I came a gutser and rolled over.  during my upside down travels, my elbow scraped the river bed, concrete and tore a nice little hole through my cag, my thermal and my elbow.  Hmmm.  Some repairs to do.

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