White Water Safety Rescue Training
Written by Clive Edwards
Great weekend. The whole team came with a positive and can-do attitude. Ollie was a great coach, instructor and guide who took part in the activities, not just bankside. His briefs were clear (stop it..) and to the point. He had to make decisions because of the high water levels. ~~Safety: carry out assessment~~ We travelled further west beyond Capel Curig from The Dee, to a more suitable site on the Llugwy (Jim's bridge). On Sunday, water levels were up again so a short drive through the woods to further up the Llugwy, just below the lake.
The weather was odd because it threw it down at night but not during the day, and the water was still warmish.
Best aggressive swim - Mitchell, by swimming across the river through the rapids. Only Ollie managed it. The rest of us failed miserably.
Best rescue - Mitchell, by live fish-baiting Ollie. Great catch!
Best bad boy - Mitchell, within a minute of being on the water he had Naomi swimming. BAD BOY.
Best whispered affection - only Mitchell knows!!!
Best miss with a throw line - Mine, it ended up in the tree as Jamie floated by. Ushma missed me twice but perhaps not her fault as I was blinded by water.
Best failed rescue - Naomi, she hung on for dear life but had to let go in the end.
Funniest bit - Forming a pyramid to cross the river. Paul at the front (he's a big lad), with Mitchell and me behind, then Jamie, Naomi and Ushma behind again. Face up river and all take one step at a time towards the opposite bank. Within three steps Naomi and Ushma were floating. Two more steps, Jamie's floating. I'm shouting "Keep going we can do this". Mitchell starts to float and he shouting "No Clive". I start to float but still shouting "Keep going". Mitchell's shouting "No". Paul is now like Superman with five people floating off his shoulders. I'm still shouting "We can do it". Mitchell's shouting "No". Paul takes one more step and we're all starting to float and Ollie pulls us back. Still think we could have done it.
Just a brief picture of what went on. If you want to paddle white water, do this course. It's fun, you'll try all sorts of things that work well in some situations but not others. You can practice. My recommendation, get a good dry suit.