First time in Italy Advice

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WhiteWaterAddict
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First time in Italy Advice

Post by WhiteWaterAddict »

Hi,

First time poster,

Heading to Italy(Val Sessia Region) now in the first week in May , i have paddled in Slovenia (Soca) every year for the last 3/4 years now.

I typically paddle grade 3+ on a weekly basis.

Any info on what to expect heading over to Italy in early may? I dont have a lot of experience in the steeper side of boating.

Any advice for pre alpine training and skills that should be honed before heading to Italy?

Any information appeciated :)

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Simon Westgarth
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by Simon Westgarth »

Traditionally early May has colder nights and cooler days. Rainy days can make the rivers rise quick. For Class III+, hmmm start on the the lower Sesia and build from there.

Be fit in your kayak is probably the best advice, and know how and when to use your throw bag.

Dan Yates.
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by Dan Yates. »

White wine by the litre caraf is cheaper than beer. The pizza place at the bottom of the Ayasse is amazing. First timers are not allowed to look at the top drop of the Egua before running it and the cylinder drop is not optional. Drinking with the local kids in campatogna may end badly, drinking with Tom Brown definitely will. The sandwich shop in Piode provides the best butties in the world. You will run the best white water of your life as well as eating the best food and drinking the best coffee, eating the best gelato and drinking the best wine. If the Chuisella comes in medium or above , and you survive, you will have run the best steep creek in the world. You will return every year.

PMB
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by PMB »

Make sure you can boof on demand 100% of the time.

PS. I didn't think the Ayasse was anywhere near the Sesia.
Phil B

Dan Yates.
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by Dan Yates. »

Less than 2 hours away and if you fly to Geneva or drive via Mount Blanc you go straight past it.

SPL
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by SPL »

I wouldn't recommend going so early if you could go the last week of may your more likely to have better weather more consistent levels and more paddlers around which would help a first timer. The rivers are committing and quite different from the UK so take your time and build up slowly. Being with a good group is important, booking with westgarth would be a good way to build your skills and knowledge safely.
Have fun it's great.

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RichA
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by RichA »

WhiteWaterAddict wrote:
I typically paddle grade 3+ on a weekly basis.

Any info on what to expect heading over to Italy in early may? I dont have a lot of experience in the steeper side of boating.

Any advice for pre alpine training and skills that should be honed before heading to Italy?
Find some steeper runs in the UK to practice on. Some practice runs that come to mind in rough ascending order of difficulty are:

Afon Arddu - 2 or 3 drops, pool drop, alongside a footpath, about 200m long, do laps and practise boofing.

Pont Cyfyng on the Lledr - pick a low level, be wary of the cauldron on the first drop if there is much water and you don't have much experience of running drops. Don't run the 3rd drop, although that's probably obvious - portage on the right bank immediately at the bottom of the 2nd drop. A good place to practise setting up pre-emptive bank safety (or finding out how hard it can be).

The Cwm Mynach - a medium level would be good, not too high for a first time down. Please don't trample around on the banks too much if you can help it, and be sensitive about access/parking - the locals are very friendly so please don't annoy them. Might be a bit hard if you're running 3+ but a good one to aspire to. There's a path along the side so you can see most of the drops before getting geared up.

Possibly the Afon Lliw - 3 or 4 main drops, but I imagine these can be pretty nasty if you get them wrong. A big step up from 3+.

Even the Aber Glaslyn Gorge in low levels would be good practice as you can boof every single mini drop and do laps. In a medium level it could be a good practice for some sections of the lower Sesia that Simon suggested.

There are loads in Scotland that would be good practice, like the Allt a' Chaorainn in Glen Etive.

MarkEb
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by MarkEb »

Not entirly unrelated, I was skiing in the Aosta valley this year and in the reception of the hotel was the usual range of leaflets for tourists. I picked up all the rafting ones. Websites on the rafting leaflets were as follows:
http://www.raftingrepublic.com
http://www.riverbug.it
http://www.raftingadventure.com
http://www.rafting4810.com
http://www.canyoningcentre.com
http://www.raftingaostavalley.it
Might be worth having a look at some of these for some river ideas. I haven't looked at any of them but thought they might be useful to someone and since you are looking at Italy...

Mark

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AS Watersports
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by AS Watersports »

Smile for the camera.

Enjoy

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AS Watersports
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by AS Watersports »

The first time I went it hurt to laugh. The stomach muscles get a work out

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set ... 899&type=3

PMB
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by PMB »

Pont Cyfyng on the Lledr - pick a low level, be wary of the cauldron on the first drop if there is much water and you don't have much experience of running drops. Don't run the 3rd drop, although that's probably obvious - portage on the right bank immediately at the bottom of the 2nd drop. A good place to practise setting up pre-emptive bank safety (or finding out how hard it can be).
Just in case you go looking on the Lledr for these drops, Rich means the Llugwy. The falls are between Betws-y-Coed and Plas y Brenin (upstream).

His suggestions would be worth exploring if you haven't already. I'd also say the Upper Swale is a good bet for boofing practice.
Phil B

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RichA
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by RichA »

Thanks for spotting my intentional mistake! I was also thinking about Viaduct Falls on the Lledr but decided against recommending it. And yep, the Swale is a good one. Not exactly similar to the creeks of Val Sesia, but definitely great for boofing practise like you said!

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Jim
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Re: First time in Italy Advice

Post by Jim »

There are some sections on the Dora Baltea which might suit your grade, but be warned that it moves faster than any UK grade 3 to 4 river with very few flat bits. It should still be quite high in May, but that means the barrage in the gorge should be down so no portage to worry about (always get up to date info locally). I have no idea how good the Italian snow pack is this year or whether it will still be too high in May or Ok.

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