New Year's Day Paddle

Some people may have had a heavy New Year’s Eve, but seven of us managed to crawl out of bed to go for a paddle and blow away the cobwebs.

We left the paddle until the afternoon when Paul, Hilma, Keith, Adam, Rach and I met at 2pm. The route, chosen by Paul, was a nice and simple one, up the Thames to Osney, through Tumbling Bay and down the Bulstake Stream home. We launched and made our way slowly up the Thames to Osney lock where we portaged around and popped in at The Punter opposite for a New Year drink. It was quite chilly, but thanks to a spare table near the door we managed to squeeze inside in our neoprene and not put too many people off their pints.

Once we’d warmed up we set off again towards Tumbling Bay. We limboed under the chain and, after a quick portage for a couple of the group, me, Paul and Hilma shot the end weir. We all set off down the Bulstake Stream, passing under the bridge through the small rapid, and wound our way down the back stream. By this time it was dark and some fireworks were set off in the distance, heralding in the New Year for us yet again.

We turned off down the third tunnel under Folly Bridge for some manoeuvres in the pitch black and popped out on the Thames to bimble back to the hut in the dark stillness.

No photos of the trip, but a picture of fireworks, in case the London display wasn’t enough for you!

- Jen