The Weir Pub by the river in Walton played host today to a good sized group of Hamptoneers who had paddled, cycled, walked or driven to the annual prize giving lunch, superbly organised by Kathryn. The awards were many and varied from Best Capsize which went to Peter McBride to the more serious ‘Platinum’ paddling award to Babs and Jeff Simmons for winning multiple Gold awards during their lifetime.
Jeff and Babs Simmons – winners of the Platinum Paddling award
Sally (Dipstick award), Jenny (Best New Touring Paddler), Dan (Best Photography) and Peter (Best Capsize)
Go to the members page and click on the link to ‘Prizegiving 2014’ to see more pictures
Congratulations to Sam Adams and Will Pope in the Senior K2’s at Thameside 2 last Sunday, completing the 19 mile course in 2 hrs 52 mins.
Thameside 2: Reading to Marlow
This is a downstream race with mass class starts, starting in Reading and finishing at Marlow.
Approximate total distance: 19 miles
Suddenly every man and his boat were out on the the river today. Bright sunshine was tempered by a stiff easterly breeze whipping up substantial waves on some stretches of water.
Mark and Tony were out early in a Canadian, practicing for their two star assessment. Jenny and Dan (37 today!) were also out in a canoe and did a long trip down from The Bells of Ouzely in Old Windsor with myself in a kayak, 3 hours on/in the water including a quick swim for me, I can only think I must have nodded off paddling along in the sunshine after a bacon buttie at the Walton bridge cafe! We met up with Adam and Christine at Shepperton lock who had come upstream via the loop and we spotted Gabriella out in a Tor heading upstream.
Barnet and Andrew were heading downstream to Vauxhall where earlier in the afternoon a number of racing eights had foundered in the chop kicked up by the wind over tide conditions!
Remember, Charles is running a trip tomorrow (Sunday) downstream for tea and cake at the Royal and on Monday Andrew is going down to Richmond/Twickenham, contact them if you would like to join in.
A reminder to all members that membership renewals are due on 31st March.
The easiest and quickest way to renew is to pay directly by bank transfer. You can find details of membership fees, together with the Club’s bank details on the Renewal Form (see the link on the members page)
If you have any questions please contact Adam or Barnet.
Some amazing pictures here of the Dusi canoe marathon in South Africa – lots of big rocks and long portages!
The Thames has subsided back into its bed, leaving a couple of centimetres of mud across the lower part of the wharf. The pontoon is floating on the river again.
However the river is still flowing quickly; strong paddlers should reckon on taking 70 – 100 minutes to get up to Sunbury Lock; other paddlers should stick to canals for the time being.
When river levels are really high, and the red boards are out for the Thames nearby, the actual levels of the river at Bell Hill can be inferred by looking at the water levels recorded just downstream of Sunbury Lock. When the level there is 4.95 m, the car park at Bell Hill is probably all under water; when the level is 5.04 m which was the peak reached on Monday 10th February , the canoe drying area in front of the clubhouse is probably under water as well. Paddling on a canal is a good idea at these times!
The level on Thursday 13th February at midday was 4.94m
See the environment agency river levels page here : Sunbury lock river levels
The forecast for flooding at Bell Hill over the next day or two is in the middle of this page.
The Wey conditions page is here. Call Thames Lock 01932 843106 for the most up to date information on the canal parts of the Wey.
Note for drivers :- the direct route from Sunbury to Walton Bridge (Fordingbridge road) is impassable, you need to turn right in Sunbury along the Halliford road to avoid the flooding. The route from Walton bridge along the river to Weybridge is also under water. Chertsey bridge is closed as are many other roads in the area.
As the national news is saturated with terrible stories of flooded homes, businesses and farms, the Thames in Hampton has risen to within 6 inches of flooding the club house. A hardy band of volunteers in wellies turned out yesterday to tackle the job of flood proofing the club. The main jobs were to get everything up off the floor by at least a foot, including the fridge which is now sitting precariously on a canoe stand. The chest of drawers is in the ladies changing rooms and the lower canoes and kayaks all moved up higher or out to temporary lodgings in Kathryn’s garden. Just the green canoes remain for now but they would need to be moved out if they started to float up and put pressure on the racks above.
Thanks to Andrew, Adam, Phil, Clive, Val and Lesley for their hard work.
Andrew was up early in his kayak gear to secure an extra line to the jetty which is now a happy little bird sanctuary – see last photo taken on Sunday evening. The other pictures were taken at 8am this morning, Monday 10th and show the water almost over the bottom step of the club. We are watching water levels closely in case equipment needs to be moved up or out of the club building.