Canoe training

DSCF5246I’ve been spending some time coaching some canoe skills recently. The wind chose not to help us at all – paddling a canoe solo in the wind can be quite tricky when you’re practising your strokes! Paddling tandem is of course far easier, assuming teamwork skills are ok!


Cole Kayak, Gairloch

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Simon, Finlay and Erin joined me again for their second adventure with Ewe Canoe. This time we headed out from Gairloch Harbour on a calmer day amongst windy ones. They remembered their paddling strokes well and we were soon on our way, playing games and seeing wildlife.

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Crawford Pauwels Paddling, Shieldaig and Gairloch

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Amanda and Edwin joined me for a kayak from next to the Shieldaig Lodge Hotel. We had a nice paddle around the loch , seeing plenty of seals swimming around us.

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On our second meeting Amanda and Edwin brought along Archie, Marsaili and Abigail. This time we set off from Gairloch Harbour in the big canoes. After mastering some paddling strokes we played some games and set off around the coastline to see the dramatic coastline.

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Shepherd Loffill Kayak, Gairloch

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Eloise and Elizabeth joined me in the afternoon for a paddle from Gairloch harbour. We headed out in the sea kayaks, sadly it was a very low tide meaning we had a fair way to carry the boats but once we got on the water it meant we had fantastic views of the sea bed. The weather was great for the end of October, giving us good paddling conditions to see the coastline and wildlife.Shepherd Loffill 28-10-15 (42)

Graham Kayak, Gairloch

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Doug and Lily where on their honeymoon, travelling around the North Coast 500 #NC500. They had just spent a night with the Pool House in Poolewe, so after a great breakfast they where ready to explore the coastline. We headed out in the sea kayaks, practised some skills and then headed off. On our journey we spotted seals, star fish, urchins, herons and oyster catchers to name a few.

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Congratulations on your marriage, I hope the rest of your honeymoon went as well as our trip!

Josiah Ogilvie-Taylor Kayak, Gairloch

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Jo, Abigail and Richard were in the area visiting family and enjoying the beautiful Wester Ross scenery. We went for a paddle from Gairloch Harbour on some sit on top kayaks. Abigail is more used to paddling on the Thames, not a place you want to fall in – unlike the crystal clear waters up here, Richard couldn’t wait to jump in with the seals!Josiah Ogilvie-Taylor 21-9-15 (1)

Gairloch High School Paddle, Shieldaig




The Activity Tourism class and Rural Skills class joined me, along with their teachers Mrs Johnston and Mr Milner, for a day out in the boats. The aim for them was to learn about Ewe Canoe, learn some paddling skills and of course have some fun. After setting off in midge hoods we were soon able to take them off and enjoy the sunshine, couldn’t have asked for a better day.DSCF4417




It was clear from the start that some boats were going to capsize, by the end most folk had a good soaking. Had a great time with them paddling around the coast for lunch on an island and playing plenty of wet games.DSCF4400DSCF4372

Coats Kayak, Gairloch

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Downton Abbey star, Susie, and her husband, Chris, joined me in Gairloch for a paddle around with the seals in the sunshine. The weather was perfect (this week probably being the best week of weather all summer!) making paddling around the coastline very relaxing and nice. We had seals following us along our journey as we paddled along spotting star fish and urchins under the water.

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They have had a variety of larger boats in the past, Chris was keen to get Susie out in a kayak for her to try it out before possibly getting some. We couldn’t have had a better day to help persuade her!
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Malawians & Explorer Scouts, Loch Shieldaig

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Gairloch High School’s Gairloch Malawi Partnership Project had 4 Malawian youngsters and two teachers in Gairloch for a while. They were keen to do an activity with the local Explorer Scouts (which I’m one of their leaders), so we thought we’d take them canoeing. We had a great night for it, sunshine and windless. Everyone had a fantastic time splashing about and getting wet.


More pictures can be seen here.
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Richards Kayak, Gairloch

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Alan, Amanda, Thomas, Harry and Matthew met me at Gairloch Harbour with the plan of having some fun on the water. We headed out in little kayaks, practised some skills, played some games and entertained some seals. The lads had been keen to get wet throughout the session, so at the end I made sure they couldn’t get any wetter!Richards 24-8-15 (83)


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Vine Paddle, Gairloch

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Jeremy, Rachel, Martha and Anne joined me for the afternoon paddling from Gairloch harbour. We started out in canoes before switching to kayaks, learning paddling skills in each, playing games and seeing the wildlife. Martha and Anne soon got to grips with the boats and we had flying piranhas all over the place.

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Good luck with Strictly Come Dancing Jeremy!

Walton Kayak, Gairloch

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Andrew and Angela met me in Gairloch for a session kayaking. They know the waters well from sailing around in their wayfarer dinghy, but found kayaking enabled them to get much closer to the shore line. Being in little robust boats lets us explore every nook and cranny of the rocky coastline.

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