Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: Galloway Glens

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2019
    Location
    Fife
    Posts
    27

    Default Galloway Glens

    First day of the kids' summer holidays, the two boys and I set off early to get to Falkirk for the #LockNPaddle on Saturday morning.


    Source: https://twitter.com/FalkirkWheel/sta...25572478459905


    I can get the old Coleman Explorer 166 on and off the car single-handed now, without hesitation or straining myself. The pull up the banking to the Union canal with rear wheels only was heavy and sweaty, but it was a novelty riding the wheel with so many others. Good chat, and not all about boats.

    After that, we carried on down to Galloway for a week's stay with family.


    On Sunday, I took myself up to the layby just north of Loch Ken campsite, and paddled from there down to Crossmichael marina. I had a pretty strong cross wind during the 6km or so, which was good to experience. I did my longest away-from-shore "crossing" of about 500m as the river widens and twists. The drizzle stopped and the sun came out. Rather lovely, the sky was full of red kites.

    On Monday, I went back to the same put in twice, once with my boys for a quick hour across to where the Black Water of Dee flows into Loch Ken, and again later with the Kirkcudbright Canoe Club (in a borrowed kayak).

    Tuesday (yesterday) I took the Canoe and a recently acquired kayak for my son, down to Carlingwark Loch. I had three paddles on Carlingwark, explored the first few meters of the Canal linking the loch to the River Dee (too low to want to go much further), transferred my son and kayak into/onto the canoe mid-water, and back again, and had a chat with staff from the outdoor center there, which sadly closed on Friday due to a council decision. The Coleman was dissed quite severely, but the old fibreglass slalom kayak my son was paddling seemed to be mildly admired.

    Later on in the day, I went up to Crossmichael marina and put in to paddle the Coleman as a pair down to Bridge of Dee, past Glenlochar barrage and Threave Castle. We watched and listened to an Osprey, checking us out and calling to another on the opposite bank. I'd never seen them before. Hit my first hint of "white" water, but mainly scraped our way through the shallow bits, occasionally relieving the boat of my weight. The take out had an unfortunate outflow pipe about 2 meters upstream, pretty stinky, but 8 or 9km was a lovely trip.


    Off to the coast at Fleet Bay this morning, in light winds with high tide around lunch time. Still planning the next couple of days in Galloway, but I love this place and am thoroughly enjoying paddling familiar places while seeing them from a different angle.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Bangor, Co Down.
    Posts
    4,894

    Default

    Excellent. All that hard work paid off. Enjoy the rest of you holiday.
    Big Al.

    Only when the last tree has died
    and the last river been poisoned
    and the last fish been caught
    will we realise we cannot eat money.
    ~Cree Indian Proverb

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Surrey
    Posts
    22,604

    Default

    Sounds like a great few days, thanks for sharing.

    Hadn't heard any talk of the LockNPaddle thing at Falkirk this time round. Not that I'd have made it, but some SOTP members might have gone.
    Paddler,blogger,camper,pyromaniac: Blog: Wilderness is a State of Mind

    Paddle Points - where to paddle

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Lochwinnoch, Scotland
    Posts
    17,474

    Default

    Sounds like you are getting lots of paddling in on your holiday anyway. As for people dissing your canoe, it is getting you on the water and that’s all it needs to do to be a worthy craft.
    John

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2019
    Location
    Fife
    Posts
    27

    Default

    Thanks, guys.

    Wednesday was terrific. We paddled the canoe and three kayaks over to Ardwall Island, Fleet Bay and spent a few hours mucking around, swapping boats, etc. My eldest spent a while paddling the Coleman solo, standing up. I did some capsize drills, including one accidental from a sit-on-top with my son, demonstrating how if you let the paddle drift under the boat when drawing sideways, it can tip you.

    Weather was perfect and the place was so beautiful we made a pretty late decision to sleep on the island, so paddled back for kit and beat the tide back onto the island for the night. My eldest decided he didn't in fact want to stay, so I walked him back across the sand to drive him home and on my return called for a "ferry", as the tide was at that point back in again. Ticks everywhere, but a gentle little fire and first hammock in a while. Spent an hour or so watching the tide flood in the morning, before a bit of a choppy ride back, the canoe well laden. A friend and his two came to meet us and help us unload up the beach, and although I did take them out, I went 20 yards and back to the shore - he's a bigger lad than me, and it was just too much with the wind and the waves. His kids loved it, though.

    Yesterday (Friday), my eldest and I drove down to Kippford and paddled up the Urr to Palnackie for a late lunch. With a rising tide and a tailwind, it was a very pleasant ride up. We arrived in time to clamber out and watch a tall ship La Malouine leave the harbour. First time I've moored up... three round turns and four half hitches, haha. Fed and watered, my son relaxed with a lolly while I paddled back to Kippford. Rather nice experience running a tidal river.

    Today, the Galloway Activity Center on Loch Ken had an open day, and 12 of us went up to do various things they had on offer. My highlight was watching my father placing his sixth and final arrow plumb in the center of the target, having never tried archery before today. Two of us went out in a dragon boat, 15 rowers and a quick out and back. Nice enough experience, better paddling in sync I imaging.

    After that, the canoe, four kayaks and a SUP put in at Parton viaduct for several hours of paddling and waterplay. We didn't go very far, I did some two-person capsize drills with the canoe, plenty swapping of boats while out on the water, swimming etc, but really good, honest family fun on a warm summer day. Pretty new for nearly all of us to be out on the water like that. Was a good chance to let a couple of the kids take the canoe themselves for a bit.


    I've paddled that canoe eight days straight now.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •