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Thread: Has anyone done the Exe descent in an open boat?

  1. #1
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    Question Has anyone done the Exe descent in an open boat?

    Hi guys,

    If anyone has done the Exe descent in an open boat - it would be great to hear about the experience, plus any tips you might have.

    Cheers.

  2. #2

    Default Exe descent.

    Done it once and that was enough.

    Tips -

    1 choose a year when there's a reasonable flow of water and there isn't a stiff southerly wind.

    2 make sure you're heavier than your paddling partner so they have to go in the front and take all the hits from the waves on the weirs.

    3 stuff as much buoyancy as possible in the boat and use a light royalex boat - if you don't mind risking it on the weirs. Make sure you put bang plates on if you haven't already.

    4 use a playpus or similar hydration system so you don't stop paddling.

    5 practise the start beforehand as it's vital

    6 if you can check out the weirs beforehand and decide where you are going to take them.

    7 if it's high go extreme left on the last big weir by the Mill on the Exe - far right is where the frogmen and the defibrillator are stationed - enough said.

    Andy.

  3. #3
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    monkey_pork is offline a wind age, a wolf age - before the world goes headlong Super Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by andywalker
    Done it once and that was enough.

    2 make sure you're heavier than your paddling partner so they have to go in the front and take all the hits from the waves on the weirs.

    -- and --

    7 if it's high go extreme left on the last big weir by the Mill on the Exe - far right is where the frogmen and the defibrillator are stationed - enough said.
    Exellent advice, especially the first one !



    I've not done this event, but having traveled 'twixt Exeter and Tiverton on more than enough occasions, I've seen this river in all kinds of states, and I'd agree that having water in the river and reading the weirs is very good advice.

    End of November kinda time isn't it ?

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    Thanks Andy! I'm a little scared now. Maybe thats a good thing?

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    Done it four times now - only finished twice. First year we got dumped at Tivvy town and couldn't carry on. Lots of water and very scary. Second time finshed with some coaching. Moderate flow - best wier Broken - an absolute blinder. third year we went for it got fourth in our class. missed out by taking the wrong line at Broken. Last year we had a poor start got caught on a rock and holed the boat at the first wier (Salmon Ponds) Carried on took a dip at Tivvy town got to Bickleigh and pulled out as the baot wouldn't stop filling with water. I'll be back next year


    Check out the pictures from last year

    http://home.btconnect.com/aldam/bscc...05_salmon.html
    Last edited by MagiKelly; 3rd-March-2006 at 12:37 PM. Reason: Fixed link (was in image tags)
    Regards

    SuperNova

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    Default thanks

    Thanks SuperNova - top reply.

    Great photos. Looks like high adrenaline stuff. Plenty of swimming. Mind you - I'd be swimming a lot more than you! Thats a great shot - where you are both in the boat but facing each end - i.e. with your backs to each other! Looks like a good laugh though.

    Is it well marshalled in terms of safety?

    In terms of grade - what sort of level would you have to be happy to paddle in? Grade II? If so - I reckon I could cope, however I'd need to practice on the weirs.

    Cheers.

  7. #7
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    Default

    Most of teh rapids are no more than grade II but the wiers are a different matter. In High water they don't let you shoot some of them. Cowley steps is good fun in low water but deadly in the big stuff. Also where you shoot the wiers changes depending upon water levels. BTW - thats not us in the push me pull you Don't know who they were but my wife thought it would be a great shot :-)
    There are marshalls at all the wiers so if you do go in there should be someone there to fish you out. Between the wiers you're pretty much on your own (if you can be on your own with over a hundred boats on the water) The worst stretch in terms of boredom is between Bickleigh and Four Pynes. This is about four miles of meandering which gets pretty tiring (remember you're racing). The sense of achievement at the end is fantastic though. Make sure you have a boat that you don't mind if it takes a few knocks. Get plenty of bouyancy and have a go. Once you've cracked the Exe the next step is the Liffey. I must admit I haven't been brave enough to risk that yet but one day.
    Regards

    SuperNova

  8. #8

    Default paddled it heaps of time in both racing c2 and touring C2...

    won it 5 times too....various boats and partners but it is the only way to race the EXE Descent...its great fun and the weirs are ace in spate.
    anything specific you want to know please say
    karl

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