80 years - same dreams - same rivers - new and old paddlers
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SPLASH - December 2015
Monthly magazine of the River Canoe Club
RCC Facebook Group
RCC Twitter Feed
RCC Website
Thoughts from the President's Sleigh

Summer is upon us, the water is warm, and the sun is beating down. If there are tornados in Kurnell, then there is hope for every white water paddler that the summer rains will fall and swell the rivers of NSW.

Last weekend was the Xmas party and the photo above shows there is no shortage of silly santa hats within the club.  It was great to share the evening with old and new members.

Summer will provide so many opportunities for individuals and groups to launch their own trips.  There are a host of local and country club trips across January,  as well as the start of the canoe polo season.

To all those celebrating christmas, chunukah, the new year and any other festival of good will and cheer, I wish you all well and hope to see you on the water soon.

Anyone who can count, please consider the role of club Treasurer.

Regards ...  Andy 
WANTED - New Club Treasurer - With the departure of Scotty to the exciting paddling offered in South Australia, the club committee is looking for a new volunteer to perform the role of treasurer. So if you are looking for a way to contribute a little more, want to develop a new skill set, need to pad out your CV, want to be part of a dynamic management team, or just like dinner at the Rowers club, please give Andy a call on 0414922979.
New Beginners Programs
Spring Beginners Program by Rob Walker

In November the River Canoe Club Beginners Program successfully introduced 16 new beginners into the club with a 3 week program focusing on paddling technique, paddling equipment and its use, self-rescue and assisted rescue techniques.
Our new beginners started with a wide range of paddling skills and over the three days improved their stroke and techniques to complete a 20km club trip on the Nepean Gorge.
Day 1 was held at the club house with a short paddle on the Cooks River, this short trip gave the instructors and experienced members a feel for the skill level in the group and the new members a feel for a kayak for the first time.

Day 2 was held at Manly Dam with some more intensive stroke lessons as well as wet exits with and without spray skirts, X Rescues and T Rescues. The grin on Tim's face when he managed to role himself up on a T Rescue will something I won't forget.

Day 3 was a club trip on the Nepean Gorge the group of 11 beginners paddled from Tench Reserve south for 10km in fantastic sunny warm conditions before stopping for lunch and some  wet exit practice for those who had missed Day 2. On the return leg the group faced a light head wind and increase boat traffic through the water ski area. The group worked well as a team and formed a tight group. It was fantastic to see the improvement in all paddlers from the first day to completion of a 20km trip.
More photos are available on our website.  Thanks to all the experienced club members Andy, Dee, Dave, Enmoore, Will, Tracy, Lynn and Petri who came to help out with teaching the new members and to give a face to River Canoe Club. Your efforts were appreciated by the new members
“Rob and Tracy were extremely patient and helpful in observing and adjusting beginners' paddle techniques whilst we addled along Nepean River. They allowed us time to adjust and gain our own pace. They were always there whenever I fell behind. I felt really safe whilst learning new techniques.“ Tina
“Very friendly bunch!” Phil
“I thought it was an awesome beginners program and definitely looking forward to paddle more with the club! The enthusiasm and dedication of you and all the club members are very heart-warming and make us feel very lucky to have join such great club!  Thanks a lot for making all the trips a memorable and enjoyable experience!” Ruby
Details for the new Summer Beginners Program 2016
Paddling out on Simpson's Bay last weekend with three of our new members, it was great to see all the skills they have developed over the last month through our inaugural Beginners Program.  They were keen and undaunted in the face of broken swells.  They punched through the waves, sank, capsized, got rescued, and had another crack.  Seeing them catch waves in - pure fun.

We have been inundated with requests for another program in the new year. Fundamental to the success of the Spring Beginners Program was the tireless contribution of Rob Walker and his band of volunteers.  We are going to add a BYO picnic / BBQ on the afternoon of the second session.  This is a opportunity for new and old members to socialise, swap stories and develop a better understanding of the club and kayaking in general.

Dates for the Summer Beginners Program are
Feb 21 - Club House
Feb 28 - Grays Point / Swallow Rock incorporating BYO picnic / BBQ
Mar 5-6 - Cowan Ck - incorporating club paddle

Watch the website for more details
On the Mann and Nymboida Rivers - 1962 Christmas Trip

This report has taken some time to reach the club, but a couple of weeks ago I received a brown paper bag in the mail.  Of course because of my last profession, I got kind of excited - alas it was just a USB stick from B.Wrenford of Bombala.  

The description on the USB is 'Mann to Nymboida River 1962'.  According to club history - In 1962 Cliff Cromond moved into the club to deter vandals, and the club conducted a christmas trip on the Mann River and Nymboida Rivers in high flood. If anyone is able to add more of a story around B.Wrenford and this trip, please let me know. Watch the video here.
On the Colorado River with Steve Molino

In the second story from our senior paddlers, Steve Molino picks up the story from where Kevin Songberg left off in September.  Read the full story on the club website.  Both stories are so inspiring from a kayaking perspective - such big water! But I also like how both Kevin, Steve and other club and former members formed a community of support and advice to make each of these trips successful.  Apologies to Steve for not posting all photos.
On the Macquarie River - WomDomNom
A gaggle of River Canoe Club paddlers, some current members, some expired, some even from the pre-plastic era took part in this years WomDomNom, the glamour paddle of the west - 4 days from Wellington to Narromine on the Macquarie River, 150 kms, 130 paddlers, 20 volunteers - all in the name of raising funds for the Black Dog Institute.  All I can say is that I loved paddling with all the club members along the way.  Spread out across different groups, we would reconnect through the day, and share a beer at night.  Here's to next year!!

(above) At the front of the pack, are members Ralph, Hillary, then Andy and John, somewhere in the middle is Eke and Michael (paddling with his soon to be member wife Veronique).
On the Murrumbidgee River with Tracy & Gary

In early December Tracy Hudson and Gary Luke set off on an expedition to retrace the Murrumbidgee river from Esdale to Taemus Bridge.  Tracy's full account can be read on the Club website - What the Guide Book Didn't Mention

In short, Tracy in the style of the Skipper and Gary as Gillian, set off on a three hour cruise - unfortunately there was no Ginger or Mary-anne, just a lot of rocks for the next six hours. The story reinforces the need to factor in contingency as part of all planning, and that guide books only capture the river in a point of time.
On Cabbage Tree Creek - RCC Xmas Party
Across the weekend, club members converged on Maianbar for the xmas party.  Some drove and some kayaked in.  In the afternoon paddlers were seen catching waves across Simpson Bay and generally having fun.  There was a selection of white water boats, recreational, sea kayaks and doubles, all representing the paddling interests of the club members. We had floodings, tipping and rolling. We had paddlers exploring the basin and the creeks leading into the national park. We had the tide sweeping boats away and a tidal race challenging our best efforts to cross. In the evening there was a plan for a spotlight paddle into the national park, but about a nano second after the fire was lit, the enthusiasm shifted onto the spellbinding magic of the flame - what a fire! Basil spent some time explaining to me secret presidential things that need to remain secret. Over the evening there was a constant supply of good food and cheer. The late evening quickly became dawn and we were back into the kayaks for the dawn paddle. The sunday shift arrived in time for BBQ bacon and eggs before we headed off again for the  mid-morning paddle.  Well done to Dee and all the helping hands to make the weekend a success.
Tues 5th Jan 2016 - Recreational Flat Water - Mid-Week Paddle
Beginner - Suitable for first timers and those just wanting to get out on water at a leisurely pace. These paddles will generally go up stream on the Cooks River or Wolli Creek. Please arrive at 5.45 pm (latest) for 6.00 pm on the water. 
Contact - Nell Graham  0402 267 246

Sat 16th Jan 2016 - Recreational Flat Water - Southwest Arm, Port Hacking

Paddle into one of the Royal National Park's tidal creeks and see if we can find the waterfall at the end.
NSW Waterways Guide - No trips recorded - Please contribute
Contact - Rob Walker  0408 446 017
Tues 19th Jan 2016 - Flat Water - Mid-Week Paddle
Fitness Paddle - for those who want to paddle hard and increase their fitness. These paddles will go out towards Botany Bay and are suitable for more experienced paddlers as they require a higher level of skill and fitness as it can get windy. Please arrive at 5.45 pm (latest) for 6.00 pm on the water.
Contact - Nell Graham  0402 267 246
23rd-24th January 2016 - JomGom
Drawing inspiration from the WomDomNom, and being a time poor and impatient Sydney-sider, I thought I would give this trip a go.  Its the dash from Jugiong to Gundagai down the Murrumbidgee river.  Covering 44 kms on the first day and 30 kms on the second, this paddle is for the experienced and fit paddler. Best suited to plastic kayaks over 4 metres.  For anyone thinking these distances are ambitious, Tracy will be up the river on the other side of Burrinjuck dam leading more measured journey. 

The plan is to camp in Jugiong on Friday night (after approximately 4 hour drive from Sydney plus the shuttle of cars to Gundagai).  We will head off early Saturday morning, and camp overnight on the river.  The aim is to get to Gundagai in time for the Sunday lunch in the pub before heading back to Sydney.

This will be a completely self contained trip. No cars, no toilets and no back up.  So in many ways it is like the WomDomNom without the glamour.  If this appeals to you, further information can be found at the following site RiverTrails 

Participation is at the discretion of the trip leader.  PNSW fee $20 for non-club members. 

Contact - Andy Singh 0414922979
24th-26th January 2016 - Backwaters of Burrinjuck Dam

The Murrumbidgee River has long been a favourite for kayakers - from its headwater near Yaouk, paddlers have tracked the river on its northern course,  in the shadow of the Brindabella mountains, past Bredbo and Colington. The accessible sections around Canberra provide opportunities for both novices and experts - Angle Crossing, Point Hut, Pine Island, Uriarra. Heading to Yass the river prepares to swings west to commence its long and winding path across the western slopes. Here its course is trapped by the Burringjuck Dam which holds the river in the final foothills of the Brindabellas.   
The plan is for two or three days paddling on a section of the upper Murrumbidgee & Burrinjuck Dam not usually paddled by kayakers, with a base camp at Hume Park Tourist Resort, a quarter hour drive south of Yass.  Sunday paddle 20k on the last stage of the Murrumbidgee as it enters from the first hills of the dam.  Monday 20k paddle on easy waters of the dam and in and out of a few gulleys.  Optional Tuesday paddle on the north arm of the dam where Yass River enters. Touring sit-in kayaks of 4m or more.

Contact - Tracy Hudson 0411024088

Waterways Guide 

31st January 2016 - Industrial Sydney - Fish Markets

Follow Rob as he meanders through the old industrial harbours of Sydney including Rozelle Bay and White Bay.  Stop off for lunch at the fish markets.

Contact: Rob Walker
29th January 2016 - Canoe Polo
Season starts 29 January 2016 - years ago the club fielded many canoe polo teams. The 2015 Spring competition saw a number of members get involved.  So our challenge is to build our numbers to form a club team.  No talent required.  

Contact: Rob Walker
The Patient Whitewater Paddler
Any River - Any Weekend
Dave Burgess
"Gotta grab the water while its there! "
More Training Programs - PNSW Sea Leader and Instructor Programs

PaddleNSW has arranged a series of training programs for those interested in developing their sea kayaking qualifications.  See the PaddleNSW website for more details 

Enclosed Sea Guides: 2 days only (Friday/Saturday) February 19 & 20 
Enclosed Sea instructors: 3 days only (Friday to Sunday) February 19, 20 & 21 
Sea Instructors, Sea Guides and Sea Leaders 4 days (Friday to Monday)  February 19, 20, 21, & 22 
Last week I was helping a new club member putting a kayak on their roof rack. Somewhere in their enthusiasm they had managed to buy some really lousy straps. No doubt they looked really good in the shop, but long painful experience suggests a better purchase could be made. So in this spirit I wanted to provide some feedback on the Big Foot plate system from Rob Mercer at Expedition Kayaks.  If you are the owner of a plastic sea kayak, chances are your feet are resting on small pegs which make contact with only a small part of the foot.  During the 2014 WomDomNom my feet progressively went numb over the four days of paddling.  As I entered marathon racing I learnt how an efficient kayak stroke involved pushing from the heel of the foot. So going into the 2015 WomDomNom I experimented for a month in building my own heel to toe footrest system. Luckily two nights before, I bought the BigFoot plate system and quickly installed it.  Over four days of paddling, the plate provided ongoing comfortable support for my feet, and improved drive from my legs, and subsequent body rotation.  I fitted the plate systems on the lower set up (rails fitted upside down as shown in photo) which better fitted my kayak. Upon reflection, I have no idea why kayak manufacturers fit peg foot rests, and I lament the four years on paddling without the Big Foot.  Well done Rob on producing an uber useful upgrade.
Whitewater Pyranha Jed $900
Some of our more experienced white water paddlers may be able to comment on this boat.  Used white water boats surface online through a number of different websites.  This one was posted on AdventurePro.  The club has a lot of white water kayaks to hire, so try before you buy, and ask a lot of members their opinions.  
Q-Kayak Tui  $1400
This type of kayak is the core of the club's flat water fleet.  It is a great flat water boat for the beginner. Long, stable, indestructible, capable of being paddled all day down the river, harbour or estuary. Its rollable, and not too heavy.  This one has deck lines so can go out to sea and comes with other goodies. See the ad on Gumtree.
Dagger Apostle
This kayak may well be sold on ebay by the time of publication.  The kayak has deck lines, hatches and a rudder - it is quite capable for going out to sea. Its claimed to be 55 cms wide which would make it narrower than most plastic boats, which could make it faster.  Check out the sold price as an indicator of the current cost of a second hand kayak.  Someone from the NSW Sea Kayaking Club has written a review on this kayak. See the ad on Ebay.
Used Marathon Racing Boats
Thinking of joining us on the Hawkesbury Classic next year. Thinking about paddling as fast as possible.  Not thinking about safety at all - then buy a mid-rec racer.  This website has a range of racing kayaks, some at good prices.  Marathon paddlers are obsessed with the newest and latest, so there are bargains to be had for second hand boats.  Not for the beginner, but dreams start somewhere.
Club Information
2015-16 Club Committee
President - Andy Singh 0414922979
Vice President - Lynn Parker - 0406428331
Secretary - Tracy Hudson - 0411024088
Treasurer - Scott Button - 0412392839
Flat Water Convener - Rob Walker
Social - Dee Taylor - 0423831497
Splash Editor - Deborah Doherty - 0418243527
White Water Convener - Will Stone
Safety & Training - Jo Hendricks
House Officer - Nell Graham - 0402267246
Club Enquiries
New Member Contact
Andy Singh
0414 922 979
CLUB MEETINGS– held periodically at either the Clubhouse, situated at Richardsons Crescent Marrickville (opposite Tempe Railway Station and next to the Concordia Club), or depending on trips away by a river somewhere.  Check calendar for the dates & venue.
This Magazine is copyright to River Canoe Club. No part may be reproduced without permission. Non-profit canoeing clubs may reproduce any article without permission, as long as the source and copyright is acknowledged. 
Kayak Hire
Evening hire:            $5
Single day hire:        $30
Weekend hire:          $50
Hire price includes:
  • boat
  • PFD
  • spray deck
  • paddle
Helmets: Club policy requires all members to provide their own helmet that fits comfortably and meets relevant standards.  Helmets are required for whitewater and surf trips.
Kayaks Available
Necky Jive x 1
Dagger RPM x 2
Dagger GTX x 1
Nomads x 4
Bliss Stick mini
Pyranha Burn
Pyranha Fusion
Jackson Rogue
Feelfree – literally feel free
Eskimo Topo (Double) The Torvill/Dean of WW
Barker Nymph
Perception Minnow
Perception Spectrum
Australis Platypus x 2
Q-Kayak Tui x 2
Open Water
Wilderness Zypher 16
Q-Kayak Penguin
Winner Double

Kayak Hire Booking:
Discuss with trip leader well before the day of the trip.
Access to the club can be arranged through committee members (see contact list)
Payment Options
Cash to Trip Leader at commencement
Payment via Electronic Funds Transfer:
  • Account Name: River Canoe Club of NSW  
  • Bank: St George 
  • BSB:               112 879 
  • Account No: 017455888
Advise the trip leader if paying via EFT
Include surname and reason eg:‘marqueJones’ or ‘boatJones’ in the payment comment. 
Next Splash Edition - Late January 2016

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