Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

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Andy:P
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Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Andy:P » Wed Dec 03, 2014 9:30 am

I've just tried to book Lee Valley Olympic course for a session and downloaded the timetable for the next 3 months.
There's only a one hour session for Kayaks on Saturday and Sunday even though the rafts are running. That's a total of two hours a week for the next 3 months. What happened to the Olympic Legacy promises?

Sorry about the attention grabbing title but there's gotta be some debate about this :)
Last edited by Andy:P on Wed Dec 03, 2014 9:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Chalky723 » Wed Dec 03, 2014 9:36 am

Yeah, Legacy is only open for 2 hours on Sat & Sun, was looking forward to the calendar opening up now that the hyrofoil type stuff had finished for the winter...

We're down there on Saturday & will see how it goes, but if it ends up being rammed full of people we'll probably just stop going....

Some information on the Web Page would be nice - an explanation, a timescale etc.....

C
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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Mike79 » Wed Dec 03, 2014 11:35 am

It's the same every year, there is a winter shut-down. If there are rafts on you'll be able to paddle you just might not be able to book online. That's the same with summer mid-week sessions.

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Mark Gawler » Wed Dec 03, 2014 1:02 pm

Apparently there are some rivers in the UK that flow in the winter.
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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Chalky723 » Wed Dec 03, 2014 1:14 pm

Mark Gawler wrote:Apparently there are some rivers in the UK that flow in the winter.
There are indeed, but I won't be going to them every weekend as most of them are 4 1/2 hours away, while LV is 1.....

Pretty sure LV didn't shut down to this degree for previous winters but willing to be proven wrong....

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Randy Fandango » Wed Dec 03, 2014 4:26 pm

I believe it's the usual winter shut down -- rafting has finished for the season and doesn't re-start until March so the Olympic course is just open for the usual year-round kayaks and canoes only session: one hour each on Saturday and Sunday.
Paddling is only ever possible outside those hours on the olympic course if there's rafting on.
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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by morsey » Wed Dec 03, 2014 6:19 pm

And, Cardiff International White Water wins best pumped course in the land, hands down (Pogies on!).

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by shanclan » Wed Dec 03, 2014 7:04 pm

morsey wrote:And, Cardiff International White Water wins best pumped course in the land, hands down (Pogies on!).
+1
Randy Fandango wrote:I believe it's the usual winter shut down -- rafting has finished for the season and doesn't re-start until March so the Olympic course is just open for the usual year-round kayaks and canoes only session: one hour each on Saturday and Sunday.
Paddling is only ever possible outside those hours on the olympic course if there's rafting on.
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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by waverley610 » Wed Dec 03, 2014 8:07 pm

shanclan wrote:
morsey wrote:And, Cardiff International White Water wins best pumped course in the land, hands down (Pogies on!).
+1

A bit like pork pies: Is it possible to visit a pumped WW course that hasn't won an award?!

OP, it was the same set up last year I recall, one hour only on Saturday/Sunday, a pork pie lasts almost as long :-P

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by quicky » Thu Dec 04, 2014 6:33 am

Looks like only running when rafts there...
No one want to paddle in winter :) .....
Hi Andy
We are now in our Winter season where there are no rafts on so on a Saturday and Sunday from now to end of February the Olympic course will only be running for public paddling at 2pm for 1 hour.
The legacy course is available on Saturdays at 12pm to 2pm and on Sundays 11am to 2pm.
Hope this helps.
Zoe

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Jim » Fri Dec 05, 2014 2:30 pm

Think about it, pumped course has costs to meet, without the rafts to cover the costs (clients are soft southerners presumably) or guaranteed bookings from other users it won't be possible to have the course running.

Pinkston only has 2 hours per week (Monday evenings) of open to the general public park and play paddling, they were running 2 sessions (4 hours) but the onset of the wet season saw weekend bookings fall too much to make a saturday session viable. That doesn't mean the course is lying idle the rest of the week though, clubs from all over Scotland (+ some SCA committees) have block booked sessions for months in advance, you just need to join a club to get access to their sessions. Some weeks I can have 2 hours each evening.

Maybe there are other ways to use LV?
Do clubs have sessions on it, or if you can get enough of you together to cover the running costs can you book it for an hour or 2?

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Franky » Fri Dec 05, 2014 9:38 pm

I downloaded the "Off peak weekly paddling planner (December - March)" PDF from http://www.visitleevalley.org.uk/en/con ... and-kayak/.

Evidently this timetable is incorrect, because it shows the Legacy as open for public paddling for 4 hours (10-2) on Saturday and Sunday, not 2/3 hours as Zoe states. On the other hand, the Olympic is indeed shown as open for only 1 hour on each day.

Perhaps this is last year's winter timetable? In which case nothing has changed with the mingy Olympic times, but the Legacy times have been reduced (which is annoying as I've just passed my Legacy assessment and was looking forward to some visits :( ).

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by gp.girl » Sat Dec 06, 2014 9:56 am

Franky wrote:I downloaded the "Off peak weekly paddling planner (December - March)" PDF fromhttp://www.visitleevalley.org.uk/en/content/cm ... -and-kayak.
I like that one better!

If you get a group together you can hire the course but its could be more expensive (depending on group size) and you have to provide your own safety cover.
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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Randy Fandango » Sat Dec 06, 2014 3:59 pm

The centre's booking page shows that available slots for the next month are:
Legacy Course: Sat & Sun: 3 hours (11.00, 12.00 & 1.00) each day.
Friday's: 3 hours: 6.00, 7.00 & 8.00pm.
Olympic Course: Sat & Sun 1 hour each day (2.00).
No activity at all Monday 22/12/14 until Thursday 15/1/15 inclusive.
I *think* that's going to be accurate so in fact there's a reasonable days paddling possible there if you're an Olympic Course paddler who likes also paddling the Legacy loop :-)
That's my tomorrow planned anyway.....
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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Andy:P » Sun Dec 07, 2014 12:08 pm

Mark Gawler wrote:Apparently there are some rivers in the UK that flow in the winter.
Not always when your down South!! :)
I paddled the Olympic course for an hour yesterday, a bit congested but nothing on the Legacy course, it was queuing from top to bottom with paddlers stacked 4 deep at each feature, nightmare!

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Chalky723 » Sun Dec 07, 2014 1:16 pm

Andy:P wrote: I paddled the Olympic course for an hour yesterday, a bit congested but nothing on the Legacy course, it was queuing from top to bottom with paddlers stacked 4 deep at each feature, nightmare!
Yes, it was a bit silly - every eddy was full & the escalator was top to tail kayaks.... Apparently it was fully booked out.

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Franky » Sun Dec 07, 2014 1:44 pm

gp.girl wrote: If you get a group together you can hire the course but its could be more expensive (depending on group size) and you have to provide your own safety cover.
Maybe that's what they're hoping people will do... Though on the other hand, from what people here say, demand for places on the Legacy is far outstripping supply, so they should be able to rake in money from public sessions. But since they're charging just £5 an hour for the Legacy, money presumably isn't an issue for them. (I assume LV is heavily subsidised?)

Personally, I'd be happy to pay £10 an hour for the Legacy, if they extended the opening times. I'd rather pay extra for a good session than peanuts for an hour of aquatic dodgems.

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Chalky723 » Sun Dec 07, 2014 3:38 pm

Franky wrote:
gp.girl wrote: Personally, I'd be happy to pay £10 an hour for the Legacy, if they extended the opening times. I'd rather pay extra for a good session than peanuts for an hour of aquatic dodgems.
But presumably they'd keep the number of kayakers the same & just increase the cost/profit.

I'd rather pay £5 for an hour of aquatic dodgems than £10 for an hour of aquatic dodgems & the cost of a visit doubles - expensive if you go often.

As an alternative how about giving HPP a go? If our next visit to LV is as packed as this one, we're going to start alternating between the 2, plus we have some river trips planned for the new year - should keep us going until normal service is resumed in March.

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Randy Fandango » Sun Dec 07, 2014 5:32 pm

Today there was plenty of room on every legacy session and the Olympic hour -- c'est la vie :-)
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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by TechnoEngineer » Sun Dec 07, 2014 6:44 pm

Chalky723 wrote: As an alternative how about giving HPP a go? If our next visit to LV is as packed as this one, we're going to start alternating between the 2, plus we have some river trips planned for the new year - should keep us going until normal service is resumed in March.
Last time I visited HPP I wished I'd just gone to Hurley. I've been rather spoilt by LV. Although there is a really sticky hole at HPP that can be fun for playboaters.
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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by EmilyH » Mon Dec 08, 2014 8:04 am

I was on the 11am and 12nn legacy session yesterday and it was mega quiet! No queue's for any of the waves and I spent a lot of time with the whole top section of the course to myself. I rarely shared the conveyer belt with more than 1 other paddler.

I was there Friday night aswell at 7pm and 8pm and the legacy loop was no-where near full capacity.

I'm gutted there's so few olympic sessions over the coming months but I'm also keen for LV to follow a viable business model so that it doesn't close down.

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by Franky » Mon Dec 08, 2014 1:44 pm

EmilyH wrote:I was on the 11am and 12nn legacy session yesterday and it was mega quiet! No queue's for any of the waves and I spent a lot of time with the whole top section of the course to myself. I rarely shared the conveyer belt with more than 1 other paddler.
Maybe everybody read this forum on Saturday and decided not to go on Sunday :)

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Re: Lee Valley Closed to Kayaks till March

Post by gp.girl » Mon Dec 22, 2014 2:00 pm

Just downloaded the winter times and it now says Saturday 10-2 Sunday 12-2 Legacy and 2-3 Olympic :)
I can roll :)

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