2014 challenges

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Mark R
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2014 challenges

Post by Mark R » Tue Dec 17, 2013 5:48 pm

I've had a bit of a weird year - I've tried my hand at numerous ultra-endurance/distance running/MTB events and challenges. I've surprised myself by quite enjoying them, and by what I've found I can achieve.

None have involved paddling, however...which is a bit weird, given that this is my 'thing'. Indeed, I haven't ever done anything endurancey in a kayak, beyond a few longish crossings. So, I'm going to see if I can get a bit fitter and go further in a kayak, in 2014. I've got myself a fast sea kayak for starters and I'm starting to go out and train in the evenings (my current level of paddling fitness is abysmal). Incidentally, competition/ records do not do it for me - I just want to challenge myself, ideally in the outdoors. I don't mind entering competitive events if they are a means to this end.

I already have a few challenges/ events in mind...but, any suggestions? Anywhere to look for ideas?

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Jim » Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:07 pm

Ravenglass Seaquest - think sea kayak race up 3 estuaries combined with orienteering. Each paddler can work out his or her own route to collect the checkpoints so there is mental as well as physical challenge..... I enjoy it!

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Mark R » Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:12 pm

What sort of distance is that?
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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by journeyman » Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:16 pm


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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by MikeB » Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:21 pm

Some Scottish ones -

22/23 Mar 14 – The Great Glen Paddle
http://www.greatglenpaddle.co.uk/the-challenge/

29/30 Mar 14 – Loch Shiel Viking Challenge
http://www.lochshielvikings.org.uk

August sometime - Oban Sea Kayak Race.
http://www.obanseakayakrace.org/

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by pathbrae » Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:54 pm

http://www.greatglenpaddle.co.uk/how-to-enter/

The blue on blue text is a bit challenging in itself!
So much sea - so little time to see it.

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by pathbrae » Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:57 pm

LOL - Mikes post wasn't there as I posted mine -- but that's two votes for the Great Glen Paddle :-)

Although it is £125 for an entry "per vessel" this year
So much sea - so little time to see it.

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Owen » Tue Dec 17, 2013 8:56 pm

http://www.yukonriverquest.com/

Always fancied this but getting there could be expensive.

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by WillH » Tue Dec 17, 2013 10:36 pm

http://www.performanceseakayak.co.uk/index.html

Likewise, little sea paddling done this year but circumnav's of Lewis, Yell and Unst amongst others remain on my list...

Cheers
Will

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Uisce
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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Uisce » Tue Dec 17, 2013 10:49 pm

The Eddystone Challenge is definitely on my list for 2014.

An Irish Sea crossing is an obvious contender with distance options available to suit a range of ambition/ability.

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by snuggle_bunny » Tue Dec 17, 2013 10:58 pm


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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Strad » Wed Dec 18, 2013 9:45 am

Owen wrote:http://www.yukonriverquest.com/

Always fancied this but getting there could be expensive.
I've fancied this one for quite a while too.
Old School?? I miss my AQII..
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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by jamesw2 » Wed Dec 18, 2013 9:54 am

Dyffryn Conwy Mountain Triathlon.
http://www.dcpaddlers.co.uk/triathlon

Not ultra but combines a bit of everything

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by justin-g » Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:27 am

The Okere Falls Enduro on the Kaituna.

6 Hours - team - how many times can you paddle down and run back up the Kaituna in 6 hours. You would be surprised that the top teams did well over 20.

Second the Conway tri as well - its on my list this year.
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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Sprucey » Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:36 pm

It's not a sea kayak challenge but I have signed up for the Devizes-Westminster canoe race. It's 125miles (over 4 days in a K1 or non stop in K2 if you want to), 233,000 paddle strokes and includes running half a marathon over 77 portages.

It's all over by the end of Easter allowing me to go back to sea paddling, lighter and fitter for the summer.

Warning! Flat water paddling and racing is whole new world. The boats are tippy, they don't wear sensible paddling clothes, often don't wear a BA and they seem to know what the inside of a gym looks like. When told I paddled like a sea-kayaker, I thought it was a compliment - apparently it was not! I'm still struggling to paddle faster than the 10 year olds - technique is everything.

Despite that, it's surprisingly addictive and I'm learning a lot. I have also lost a stone in a month of training (2more to go) and am a lot fitter (although, sadly, not better looking!)

http://www.dwrace.org.uk

Sprucey

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Mark R » Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:08 pm

I do indeed have a Sea kayak attempt at the DW in mind...but I thought entries didn't open until Jan 1st?
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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Jim » Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:29 pm

Mark R wrote:What sort of distance is that?
It's not really an endurance event, there are (hopefully) frequent breaks.

You pick your own route, but there is a 2 hour time limit so I'd guess around 15km if you can collect all the checkpoints.

It is arranged over the turn of the tide so you have to work out which estuaries you want to hit in which direction when, some you might need the flood to help against the current, but you won't have it for all of them. Some of the estuaries might be dry for part of the duration so timing for them is important.

The best thing is that the range of participants from familes in canoes to more serious racers on skis makes for an overall fun event.

Another roughly 2 hour challenge you can tackle anytime is John Willacy's Menai Challenge - the basics are on his website, you can be responsible for timing yourself (or if he and/or other locals are free they will join you which means you will have a shuttle and don't have to do it again 4 hours later to get back to your car).

But how can you say you have never done anything endurancey? Surely most days of your ongoing circumnavigation have been long distance days? IOW circumnavigations? Anglesey? For sure most of us could train and go further, but I don't get the impression that you don't already go pretty far in a day?

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Sprucey » Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:32 pm

Hi Mark,

no they don't open until January and I don't think they close until a couple of weeks before the event but the serious paddlers are all out there training now. I have been told there are no limits re: numbers so I think a lot of people wait until nearer the race to see how their training is going and make sure they are not injured before entering. I think I will enter straight way in January - I need that commitment to keep me motivated to train.

I think a Taran or other fast seas kayak would be good but challenging - the ,main issue are the portages with the weight of the boat making it hard. I think you can use a trolley as long as you carry it with you on the boat when paddling.

If you are a single you can only do it over 4 days which means it becomes a potentially expensive logistical challenge although I think you can camp.

I am doing it in a K1 and have bought a second hand boat to do the event. I'm a pretty experienced sea paddler and am finding the learning curve in the K1 very steep.

Sprucey

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by grumpyoldman » Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:55 pm

How about the Eddystone challenge.

I believe the next one is July 2014 and involves a trip from Plymouth to the Eddystone Lighthouse and back with out stopping. There is also a time limit to reach the halfway point.

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Mark R » Wed Dec 18, 2013 7:49 pm

+ I've taken part in the Eddystone event before, great fun...didn't quite reach the lighthouse though, was paddling with Mrs R. Must do it again.

+ That's good news about the DW allowing trolleys...my boat is NOT carbon...

+ Conwy Triathlon looks right up my street, thanks for the info.

+ Jim, by 'endurancy' I mean pushing my own limits, in terms of distance/ time in the boat. I guess I've done a lot of 20-30 mile crossings, but nothing longer. Fairly sure that I've never gone beyond c40 miles in one day, sea paddling*. I want to a] at least be fit enough to do such stuff once more and b] go further still. I somehow survived some pretty hardcore trail ultramarathons this year, given that I'm mainly into paddling, I'd be interested to see what I can survive in a boat.

Cheers for useful suggestions, all.

* Managed to bang out 110 km in six hours on a monsoon river once, though...
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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Aled » Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:32 pm

+1 for the Conwy Triathlon, and the Conwy Ascent

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by pathbrae » Fri Dec 20, 2013 9:55 pm

Not an event as such - but I presume you've read "The Canoe Boys"? Retracing their route in a modern boat with modern camping gear would be an interesting challenge - and these days you'd probably pick up a fair bit of company along the way to do sections of it with you.
So much sea - so little time to see it.

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Mark R » Fri Dec 20, 2013 10:42 pm

It's a wonderful book. As it happens, I have indeed retraced their route, and more besides.
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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by simple » Sat Dec 21, 2013 6:19 am

A seasons warm up with CCL around the IoW in a day...

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by EK Sydney » Sat Dec 21, 2013 11:00 am

We've got a few around Sydney Mark. The Hawkesbury Classic is a 100km race down a river overnight, the Myall Classic is 47km along another beautiful coastal river, and we have multisport paddling events like the Hydrothon (1.5km ocean swim, 11km ski paddle out through the surf, along Cronulla Beach & back through the surf, then a 10km run), and the 42km Royal Challenge (11km paddle, 20km trail run, 11km paddle).
This year I've done the first three as well as the 20 Beaches Ocean Classic, which is a 26km downwind ski race, and have the Royal Challenge to go in a month. I'm new to endurance running so it's been a great series of varied challenges, for sure.
You'd only have to stay here for three weeks to get them all done!
Mark.

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Nick P » Tue Dec 24, 2013 9:54 am

Mark,
How about a tour of the 9 Lights?

Godrevy Island
Pendeen
Seven Stones lightship
Round Island
Bishops Rock
Wolf Rock
Longships
Tater Du
Lizard

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Jonathan. » Tue Dec 24, 2013 10:24 am

http://glurl.co/djy

Last year's challenge - but none the worse for that.
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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Mark R » Fri Jan 03, 2014 8:55 pm

Sprucey wrote:I am doing it in a K1 and have bought a second hand boat to do the event. I'm a pretty experienced sea paddler and am finding the learning curve in the K1 very steep.
So...I'm about to enter the DW, but need to check one thing. Are there any rules regarding kayak dimensions? I've read the various rule sheets but can't find anything. My kayak is 562 cm, plus rudder.

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Helen Newseakayaker » Sat Jan 04, 2014 4:55 pm

Hi Mark,
There is a Facebook group 'Devizes to Westminster international Canoe Race'. I'm sure you'll get a prompt response if you ask your question there.
Best of luck with your DW endeavours.
Helen

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Re: 2014 challenges

Post by Erling » Sat Jan 04, 2014 6:47 pm

Arctic Sea Kayak Race in Vesterålen, just NE of Lofoten.
https://www.facebook.com/ArcticSeaKayakRace
http://www.askr.no/
It seems like they will replace the marathon with a half marathon this year.
The older I get, the better I used to be.

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