Welcome to the Ninth Australian Canoeing Recreation Newsletter.  If there is any addition that you would like to see in this newsletter please let me know. Also if you have any contents that you would like to submit please feel free to email.



This Issue

Feature App: BOM

New Gear/Gadget: Long Span Y Racks

Feature Craft: North Shore Ocean 17

Feature Location:  Penrith Whitewater Stadium

Article: Safety in Recreational Paddling

Paddling Skills:  Basic Sea Kayaking Skills

Feature Club: Kananook Creek Canoe Club

Feature Book/Video: The Paddlers Guide to Victoria

Useful links


Feature App: BOM


BOM Weather is the Bureau of Meteorology's weather app, giving you the most accurate weather information as you move around.

Expedition kayaks

New Gear/Gadget: Long Span Y Racks


These long-span Y racks convert even the shortest hatchback rack span to a width more typical on a big SUV, via a brilliant design which is light, secure & simple to fit. The 'Y' cradles are paddled with a  smooth nylon so you boat will slide, the fixture plates have a thin rubber coating to prevent the bars sliding, and you can clip the Y fitting out when you're not carrying your kayak. $320.00

Pace 17

Feature craft: North Shore Ocean 17


North Shore pushes the boundaries of sea kayak design yet again. The new Ocean gives you wings. This unique feature creates a fast and stable hull, with excellent edging. A low profile deck sheds water well and offers very low windage, keeping you in control even in the worst sea and weather conditions. This gives you an unrivalled confidence to go and enjoy the Oceans of the world. Superb to paddle empty on day trips but has the carrying capacity you require for those extended trips we all dream of. Wings, crisp edges that stop just behind the seat and slowly blend into the bow. Neutrally balanced, (the widest part of the kayak is by your hips) Extra recessed skeg blade to reduce the risk of jamming. Contoured bulkheads reduce stress points on the hull. Comfortable padded seat with good support backrest and hip pads. Hand grips at the back of the cockpit rim. Easy access deck pod. Security attachment point on rear deck.


Feature location: Penrith Whitewater Stadium

Penrith Whitewater Stadium was purposefully built for whitewater kayaking and canoeing.

Paddlers from near and far make their way to Penrith Whitewater to take on the challenge and fun of  grade 3 rapids. 

From juniors beginning on the flatwater lake through to advanced grade 3 paddlers, Penrith Whitewater offers a variety of courses, lessons and activities to suit all levels.


Article: Safety in Recreational Paddling 


As paddlers, we have all been in situations where we have regretted for exposing ourselves in such environments without doing our homework. I certainly have, several times I have been in situations where I have blamed the entire world why things are going so wrong. I write this article to illuminate some of the little things that can be manipulated in order to enjoy a pleasant float in any given day. As a paddler, I have learnt that we need to rethink our preparation, timing, the gear we carry and the rescue skills within the group embarking on our voyages.

Lessons from the past.

As I emerge from my tent, I am confronted by the snow-capped mountains of Patagonia. It is a fresh look that reminds me why I am camped on the shores of the Futaleufu. I look around the camp and there is a sign of slow movements around the campfire. As I approach the immobile small gathering, I can smell the freshness of coffee as each individual is nursing a strong cup of the South American brew.

After the festivities encouraged by vino negro the previous night, it is midday and we are walking to the put-in just below the bridge. A good, but late start for the distance we are planning to navigate, nevertheless we are on the Futaleufu. We have made the very challenging trip to the river and now we are about to hit the waters of Patagonia.

We were a group of four. I was fresh from the Zambezi, plus I had just done a season in Colorado, paddling such rivers as the Gore Canyon, I felt strong and untouchable. Gringo had been paddling in Peru where I had met him and paddled with him on the Apurimac. Geo was from Germany, not a solid paddler so he was to join us from the second bridge. Then Amigo was a native Peruvian, a good paddler but lacked self-confidence and leadership.  None of us had done the Futaleufu, but Amigo seem to think he knew the river. We had some instructions from the local paddlers so we kind-of had a good idea of what to expect.

As this was in February which is late for the season, we were worried about The Terminator, so we identified that in time and took a sneak run on far left. Everything was eventuating accordingly until we got to the second bridge. We stopped and had a bite at the local shop on river left. I would admit that was the tastiest raw sausage I have ever had. It might have had to do with the fact that I had only had coffee the whole day.

With Geo in the group it was now four of us enjoying the wave train as we disappeared from the bridge. That was not to be enjoyed for too long. Geo somehow bailed out of his kayak or the spray deck came off. Somehow he managed to swim with all his gear to an island about 30m from river left. We all eddied out and tried to rescue Geo. This was the start of a bad ending to the day.

We only had two throw bags (15 and 20m) which was not long enough to throw to Geo on the island. So I had to use my cow’s tail with the two ropes joined together. I managed to get to the eddy on the island. I got Geo to hold-on to the end of my Necky zip with his boat and paddle in the other hand. Considering Geo was well over 100kg coupled with the gear, the little zip was no match for the weight.

On the way back the little boat was turned and tumbled by the current. Somehow I managed to get very close to river left before I was upside down. My paddle got tangled with the rope which was still on my cow’s tail. I tried to open the quick release but the system did not oblige. The two guys on the line managed to pull everything into the eddy, one of them had to jump into the water to help me up and grab some of Geo’s gear which at this point was floating free.

All this took us to the last visible rays of the day’s sun. We still had a fair distance to cover. With the doubts on Geo’s paddling skills we decided that Geo and Amigo should walk up-stream to the shop. I paddled down for another two or so km with Gringo to the next campsite on river right. We had to run down stream on the main road with all our kayaking outfits to the shuttle which was waiting probably worried at that stage. It would have been a sight to watch two dudes in full paddling gear just jogging down the road. We made it back to the camp before midnight. Vino negro was already warmed. Man! were we ready to tell the story to the party???

Lessons to learn

Put simple that could have been a nice enjoyable paddle on one of the most beautiful waterways on the planet. Had we made our research, persuaded someone who knew the river or hired a guide to accompany us. All this drama could have been avoided. We should have had a plan and started the trip early. For some reason only known by karma, incidents happen in the late afternoons. By then we do not have enough time to plan and execute proper rescues plus everyone is tired and working in a rush. We should have assessed paddling skills, Swiftwater Rescue skills and even a consideration of rescue gear on the trip. Two short throw bags, with a few carabiners among a group of four with only one person with formal rescue skills was a good recipe for disaster. It seems unreal to think about that trip with my current knowledge now. I will highly recommend a serious consideration of the elements above and more, before embarking on the next expedition.


Paddling Skill: Basic Sea kayaking skills

These Youtube videos are produced by NSW Sea Kayak club. Check it out at. 



Feature Club: Kananook Creek Canoe Club



Feature Book/Video: The Paddlers Guide to Victoria


Published in October 2014, this is the first paddling guidebook for Victoria in eight years, and the only one with dedicated paddle maps, GPS coordinates, and colour photographs for every location.

Victoria is “the place to be” for anyone whose dream paddling destinations include magnificent limestone gorges, ancient volcanic craters, gorgeous temperate rainforests, rugged alpine country, marvellous Melbourne and the mighty Murray River. The Paddler’s Guide to Victoria is the ultimate companion for seeing all of these amazing places from the water.



Useful links      

Australian Canoeing www.canoe.org.au

Finding a club www.canoe.org.au/clubs

Paddle Prep www.canoe.org.au/paddle-prep

Paddle OZ www.paddleoz.canoe.org.au

Waterways Guide www.waterwaysguide.org.au

Global Paddler http://globalpaddler.com.au/

Recreation Events www.canoe.org.au/calendar/calendar-recreational-events

Craft and equipment

Expedition Kayaks www.expeditionkayaks.com

Jervis Bay Kayaks www.jervisbaykayaks.com

Rosco Canoes www.roscocanoes.com.au

Moxie Gear www.moxiegear.com.au

Ocean Wilderness Sea Kayaking www.oceanwilderness.com.au

Adventure Outlet www.adventureoutlet.com.au

Velocity watersports Australia: www.velocitywatersports.com.au

Commercial trips

Freedom Outdoors www.freedomoutdoors.com.au  

Adventure Outlet www.adventureoutlet.com.au/tours

Kajakknord www.kajakknord.no

RegionX www.regionx.com.au

Sea Kayak Jervis Bay www.seakayakjervisbay.com 

 Life's an Adventure http://www.lifesanadventure.com.au/tour/days-tours/sydney-guided-tours/

Redlands kayak tours: www.redlandskayaktours.com.au

Adventure Kayaking SA: www.adventurekayak.com.au

Sea kayak Australia:  www.seakayakaustralia.com

The School of Yak: www.schoolofyak.com.au