22nd-April-2012, 04:35 PM
River Nene | Denford & Ringstead
With the weather forecast looking good for this morning I took the Pelican Explorer & the dad out for a couple hours paddlin'. We're really happy we took the old plastic seats out and fitted some nice ash webbed seats from Stu at Apache. They're lower now and soooooooo much more comfortable...and look great!
We started at Denford, a nice village in the East of Northamptonshire.
The villagers must enjoy feeding the ducks as we were quickly greeted by a swan, ducks and some little ducklings. We had nothing to give them, in fact we didn't even bring lunch for ourselves
We launched from the backwater and paddled on upriver and against pretty strong headwinds. Today we decided for the first time to bring the kk paddles as backups, because on our last trip we battled hard against strong winds and found the Explorer to be greatly affected. Our canoe paddles are too short, not too efficient, so double paddles were taken this time for upriver and against the wind, however non-traditional they may be
We passed another Pelican.
And a Heron.
We approached the first of two big bridges on our trip, which carry a cycle track from Thrapston down to Stanwick Lakes. On the other side is Woodford Lock. We passed the lock up a backwater instead to the weir, which we portaged around.
Woodford church in the distance.
We paddled on past Woodford.
We soon arrived at the second bridge of the trip, and passed a narrowboat...
...and a butch swan.
Just before Woodford Mill Marina, near Ringstead, we stopped under a nice willow tree at Kinewell Lake for a cuppa.
A tree had been felled...
...and made into a handy bench!
We had a little walk about. The Lake is quite large, and seemed a nice area for a walk.
We saw a few woodpeckers. My guess this is the work of one of them.
After a much welcomed cuppa, we were getting hungry so headed back, this time happily using the single canoe paddle. Much more relaxing.
Hoping we'd beat the rain.
Nice bright yellow rapeseed fields everywhere.
Captured a kestrel.
And another heron.
We portaged at the weir again to go back down the backwater, as it's far more fun than the main river around the lock.
We noticed some difference in the mud colour...maybe from higher waterlevels? Maybe just different...
Travelling much faster now, we soon were back at Denford.
A nice couple hours, and we beat the rain that hit us on the way back home!
22nd-April-2012, 05:42 PM
22nd-April-2012, 05:45 PM
Looks like a nice trip. I like what you've done with the seats.
22nd-April-2012, 05:56 PM
Excellent blogg! with superb photos to go with.
Thanks for sharing
22nd-April-2012, 06:26 PM
Haha, not heard that for a few years.
Originally Posted by Simms
22nd-April-2012, 06:41 PM
Nice blogg, and some very nice photos. Love the kestrel & the 2 herons.
22nd-April-2012, 07:19 PM
Very nice pictures, gives the flavor of the spring weather. Good job on your seat modifications.
Though it's a matter of taste, I think your canoe paddles look rather short. When you're struggling against wind, short paddles don't help. If you very much want short paddles, you could try bent shafts which will help your forward progress.
I've used double bladed paddles in canoes, and there again, even sea kayak paddles can be too short. Probably they need to be at least 240 cm to be efficient in a canoe. Otherwise you're having to pass the paddle back and forth, and up and down, to an excessive degree.
22nd-April-2012, 07:25 PM
Yeah you're totally right they are too short like I mentioned in my post, and I'm currently paddle shopping! We just got these ones with the boat you see.
22nd-April-2012, 08:18 PM
Nice looking river for a trip out, really peaceful.
Loved the big sky photos!
24th-April-2012, 08:53 AM
24th-April-2012, 07:29 PM
Good blog and some great pictures, Donny. Those seats are a vast improvement too.