River Leven Paddle 25th April 2021 – by Craig Ford
The first opportunity for many, many months for paddlers to get out to the Lake District saw an organised group of 24 paddlers arriving early Sunday morning at the River Leven get in. Like turning up to the beach when the tide is out there was talk of “Where has the water gone?” This was going to be a first for everybody paddling this stretch of the Leven at such a low level.
No need for the usual queue to get on to the water and everybody waded out ankle deep into the river to get in their boats. A gentle float down to the first feature where normally we would stay away from the weir, which today had no water running over it. With the insight that the remainder of the river would be very scrapey we were encouraged to use the play wave here to have fun in, along with ferry gliding across for those keen to practise.
Then it was time to paddle downstream which now gave new features with proper drops and the ability to scramble back upriver and have a couple more practices. Everyone safely over the drop and it was time to navigate down river around the rocks and the newly named “Gravel Yard”. Even with the low levels the get out had the usual “socially distanced” conversations about the enjoyment of the day’s paddle.
Thanks to everyone for making this a great day out and especially the leaders and assistants for volunteering to run this trip.