Monday, February 25, 2008

discovery learning @ Derbyhaven

Derbyhaven is one of the few very protected locations for paddling in certain wind directions, with a horseshoe shaped bay facing NE and a low marooned breakwater providing shelter from seas not already shielded by land. This whole inlet is nestled in behind the long arm of Langness, a rocky peninsular jutting out into the strong tidal stream on the South coast of the Island. Providing a paradoxical contrast of calm and control, exhilaration and horrification (amongst other experiences for kayakers), all within a short distance from shore, this location is to be approached with caution and experience.
We scheduled the improvers and intromediate sessions to coincide with the last few hours of the flood tide, ensuring a safe and sheltered working area in Derby 'Haven' with the option of a foray along the intriguing coastline of rock formations and fossils, inlets and channels, to the East of Langness... It was the ideal opportunity for discovery learning with use of skegs and edge control, imput from the 'beach whiteboard' during the break, culminating in some impressive results by the end. The Intermediate / Advanced group headed out round Fort Island, after a brief decisive chat, on route for Dreswick Point! Timed nicely for close observation of Langness running on max spring tides, (against the wind) the plan was to follow the ebbing stream, then break out round Langness point into Castletown Bay. The lighthouse (now the home of Island resident and well known motorsport fanatic Jeremy Clarkson) provided the perfect backdrop for pre-tidal race brief, and the last point before committing entirely to the adventure. With everyone fully alert, decks clean of clutter, off we paddled...

We pulled into Castletown bay some time later, with the look of exhillaration and satisfaction beaming from everyones faces, a very enjoyable trip and some tasty cake to top it off. Sorry for the lack of pics :)

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