French Alps 2019 paddling trip – Day 08a Middle Durance 2019 by Mark Benson

French Alps 2019 paddling trip

Day 08a Middle Durance 2019 by Mark Benson

After a full day and night of rain and the prospect of a chilly wait for some, the group decided that discretion was the better part of valour and the Middle Guil was left for one of the warmer days expected for the rest of the trip. Instead, we reverted to that old standard, campsite to St Clement, starting on top of the slalom course.

It was a late, relaxed start, so plenty of time for the customary leaving of kit behind in the tent. This time it was Ron’s honour but luckily, chauffeur-driven transport was on hand to help and, in the time it takes for a chrysalis to transform into a river-butterfly, Ron and the rest of the rear-guard were bouncing down the slalom course to join the rest of the group.

The river was a little higher thanks to the aforementioned rainfall. The Fressinières rapid did not disappoint and, making the most of the revised itinerary, some put in eddy practice, whilst others let the river take the strain. So we continued in like manner, on a pleasant paddle to the top of the St Clements slalom course. There Keith encouraged us to venture into the top wave, some meeting with more success than others.

All in all, not the drama of the Middle Guil, but a good choice for the group, given the weather.

More photographs……….