On Tuesday 27th December a very large number of paddlers arrived to take part on CANI’s Annual Turkey Paddle on the River Blackwater. When we finally departed Blackwater Town at 11.30am there were 128 paddlers on the river. We paddled down to the Moy, where we stopped for lunch and then paddled on down passed the Argory to Bonds Bridge. It was really nice to see so many families and young people out enjoying themselves. A vast majority of the group then headed to Groucho’s Bar in Richhill for some mulled wine and food. Apparently the locals wanted to know why the village had been taken over by kayaks and canoes! The participants in the recreational paddles really increased in number throughout 2011. The staggering 128 paddlers that participated in the turkey paddle gave us a grand total of 860 paddlers participating in recreational paddles/events last year.
CANI would like to say a huge thanks to Groucho’s for putting on the food and mulled wine for after the paddle. Thank you.
This is what one of the participants from Erne paddlers had to say about the event;
“As a relatively new paddler, being active for a year or so, I’ve come to realise pretty quickly that the lure of the paddle comes in a multitude of guises for many and the reason being, there’s such an array of craft, of technique, of activity and water scape and it’s going to take forever to try it all. Happy days.
The glue that seems to bring all this together, is of course, the paddlers themselves and their possibly obsessional affection for canoeing, or is it kayaking?
The ‘Recreational paddle’ seems to be a celebration of this all in a small way, in fact a most enjoyable communal day of paddle and sandwiches.
‘The Turkey Run’, organised by CANI, along the Blackwater River, seemed to me the perfect way to spend some relaxing time with fellow club members, meet new people and introduce the whole thing to my two young sons and their cousin, tripping along with his dad, my brother in law and fellow club members.
The boys were so excited about the whole idea of travelling down the river in our ship, constructed briefly from two strapped together open canoes, their kit on and short paddles at the ready.
They knew of course that there wasn’t really a huge historical Turkey, that had made this particular run, one far past winters day with a farmer at its heals; but still it added zest to the adventure.
The simple structure of a recreational paddle is so easy and inclusive, providing a safe and welcoming introduction to new paddlers of all ages and a get together for all from toddlers to Grans, family canoes to single river runners.
The boy’s had a really great day out, not too short, not too long and they are most definitely hooked, as am I.
Can’t wait for the next one……….I’d highly recommend it”