09 November 2008

Dabbling in the Borders

When I moved to Carlisle back in September I thought: "great. I'm now closer to the Lake District for forays, with a boat, on the becks and rivers." However I also came to realise that I was now only a stones throw away from the Scottish border, which opened up day trips to those rivers the SCA's guidebook class as the Borders and Burns Country. Well today was the day that I came to realise what I realised back in September.

I had the option of going to paddle the Leven: I've done that a fair few times so I thought I'd get on something different. I sent out a couple of messages on Saturday night trying to find some paddling chums who were looking to utilise the heavy rain that had been falling for some time and was predicted to fall for most of the night. Within minutes of sending the message I had found myself some aforementioned paddling chums, was heading for a river I hadn't paddled before, and was crossing over into Scotland. The said river was the Nith, which I have heard many stories about, and after the descent of the grade 3/4 waters flowing off the Ayrshire Hills I can see why this is.

Somewhere on the Nith.

Punching through the hole at the bottom of the class four section.

Surfing the hole to escape the eddy on river left.

It seems like I didn't get that many pictures today and to be honest nothing stands out as a remarkable event that should have been photographed or noted now on these pages. I enjoyed myself anyway and that's all that matters. When arriving at Drumlanrig Bridge the river was knocking around the IV mark on the gauge, which according to the guidebook is high. By the time we had got off, it had dropped below this, but it will be rising as it started raining whilst we were making tracks back to England. The paddle was good. It was continuous, biggish volume stuff. We ran most things on site, but did get out to briefly inspect two bits where we couldn't get a good enough vantage from the boat.

Good lines, stay safe and see you on the wet stuff...

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