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Urban Kayaking through Central London.


The sun finally put its hat on and we went out to play! 

We hooked up with Tommo from Moors 2 Mountains and went on a spur of the moment paddle through central London. 

With the hope of a beautiful sunrise, Tommo convinced me to camp out in our cars in the middle of nowhere just outside central London. The last minuet decision rewarded us with a lush morning paddle on an empty stretch of the River Lea and sun rising over misty waters. 

 

We hopped in the "Polar Bear" van and made our way into London. 

As Tommo was getting the kit out and ready I went to brush up on my non-existent Kayaking skills. After turning down Tommo's offer of helping me to get in the water I geared up and sat at the side of the river bank exactly how I watched Tommo do it hours earlier (how hard can it be?), with a shaky shuffle I plunged towards the water and then more apparently UNDER the water.....

What a great start to my Kayak adventure - rattled, soaking wet and a bit embarrassed being on a busy walkway in central London I scampered out and tipped the water out of my vessel. Not one to give up and without thinking about how disgustingly dirty the water was I hyped myself up for round 2! With the knowledge from my first capsized attempt and my willingness to somehow save face I glided with prowess and gale right up until I hit the water and instantly capsized AGAIN. 

Defeated and soaking wet I squelched back to the van and to Tommo's howling laughter. "Hahaha you cant drop in on that kayak it has a V shaped bottom you idiot HAHAHAH" Im laughing about it now as I type, what a fool. 

With Tommo's instruction I sheepishly got into the already floating kayak and off we went to explore the waterways around the Olympic stadium and Hackney. 

It's such a cool way to see London, away from the rushing crowds but still fully present with graffiti, smells, sights and sounds of London all around you. 

We even got served ice coffee from a boat while on the water. We hooked up with some pals and had a couple of beers on Hackney Wick before paddling back under the setting sun. 

What a fun day and great way to see London in a totally different light. I will definitely be back again to explore more areas when even more restrictions are lifted, we may be stuck in the UK for the summer because of Covid but trips like this show there is so much more to experience on our doorstep.