Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The Ups And Downs Of Practice

Heading into the final week before we take our Paddle Canada Level 3 course we were back on the water last weekend working on a few skills that up to now have been going pretty good. On Saturday we needed to find an alternative practice area as the beach at Cadboro Bay was closed due to an outflow contamination issue from last week's rainstorm.

Checking the tides for other options we chose Ardwell Bay in Sidney and were on the water later in the afternoon when the tide was higher. With the incoming tide the bay had a lot of seaweed on the surface but at least it was easy to access the beach and a place we could get wet.

Our motto "If you don't perform well at least look great doing it" Robyn looking great!
Maybe it was a combination of a big walk in the morning, shopping at the Ocean River Event of Adventures or the heat from an unusual hot September day but one thing for sure .... we were sooo off today! I won't go too much into want went wrong but the short video clip below sums it all up.

On Sunday we thought maybe a change of scenery would do the trick so we chose Willows Beach in Oak Bay as our training area. We arrived early before the sun worshipers started to claim their piece of sand real estate for the day and focused on some self rescue skills. Having never launched at Willows Beach before we were pleasantly surprised about the ease of finding a parking spot and felt the access to the water was much better than our regular training area at Cadboro Bay.

Yup ... the whole beach pretty well much to our self

One thing that we didn't expect was how clear and cold the water was compared to Cadboro Bay which is due to the water movement through Baynes Channel. This was a good thing as it probably better suits the conditions that we will be paddling in at the Deer Group for the course. We spent more time on our rolls which were much better than the day before and over all we were IN the water more than out of the water.

We also did a few scramble or cowboy rescues just to mix things up.

Only one more weekend to work on skills and a bunch of homework to complete before we leave next week on our next adventure. Naturally we are excited about the course but the anxiety and unknowns of being assessed are starting to creep in. If anything, it should make for a great blog post!

2014 Paddle # 40 & 41 Practice Time (Again!)
Distance: Zippo! nm (Nada! km)
YTD: 235.02 nm (435.25 km)

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