As most of the staff at college were relaxing from a long first part of the year
Matt Toogood (Media), Mark Woodward ( Maths) and JR ( Estates) decided to have a challenge - to paddle the River Thames.
Initially we thought we could paddle from the top of the navigation to the sea but after considerable thought we decided this was not practical in only one week. Therefore we decided to enjoy the river at a more sedate pace, after all we were on holiday!
Paddling for six hours a day was always going to be a challenge, getting up day after day when you're body is not use to long distance paddling was going to hurt! All we can say is a lot of deep heat on muscles that don't get used whilst teaching, was a must.
The weather was not the usual Autumnal scene as Storm Brian decided to hit at the beginning of the week with some pretty strong winds. But these lads were not easily put off, after all they run the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme and the Adventure programme in College, they are a hardy lot! Having learnt to deploy the pop up sail they managed to harness the wind and actually enjoyed a bit of respite.
After a couple of days on the water they were joined by Joe McCarthy-Holland (Physics) and his son Issac in their inflatable kayak, to boost any spirits that might be flagging. However while the inflatable kayaks are great for recreational purposes they are not built for long paddles and the rest of the group ended up towing the inflatable at the end of the day.
The team enjoyed the great outdoors with 5 days paddling and 4 nights under canvas, covering 80 miles of the Thames from Lechlade to Henley. They proved that it can be done in the timescale and had a great week.
What will the next adventure be for this intrepid trio?