Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Low water on the Blyth

Heading for the beach at Walberswick we stopped for a quick picture of the Blyth at low tide, looking east after scrambling over the dyke from the A12


















And at Walberswick







Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Hoxne Weir with 0.37m on the gauge

A mild day in mid December for a paddle from Syleham up to the weir at Hoxne for the waterslide

Waterslide at Hoxne with 0.34m on the gauge from Petro Dobromylskyj on Vimeo.

Below Hoxne Weir there is 1/4 of a mile of little gravel riffles to the mill house. After this is is deeper and slower but soon you meet a killer of a low tree. A solid tree trunk right across the whole river, you could get under it at very low levels or over it at very high levels, but I've had to portage it at mid levels.

IT'S GONE!

Happy happy, thank you to who ever removed it. Environment Agency?????

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Roaring Arch bridge again

Roaring Arch Bridge with 0.25m on the gauge. Less of a bump and scrape than last time, unfortunately no 'yak today...










































Monday, 21 November 2016

Needham with just under 0.5m on the gauge at Billingford

Yesterday at Needham


Needham Weir from Petro Dobromylskyj on Vimeo.

River Waveney at Shotford, Needham and Syleham with just under 0.5m on the Billingford gauge

First flood of the Autumn, should have cleared the weed chokes:

Shotford Bridge  with the river full but only just over the banks in a few places























Looking down stream from the launch point steps

















Needham Weir looking unpleasant but not too lethal

















Syleham House in panorama






Syleham Back Channel as it approaches the road bridge to rejoin the main stream







Thursday, 3 November 2016

Monday, 17 October 2016

Roaring Arch Bridge in very low water

With 0.16m on the Billingford flow gauge the little weir at Roaring Arch Bridge is quite a dry bump and scrape:




Roaring Arch Bridge in low water conditions from Petro Dobromylskyj on Vimeo.

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Bungay Loop last Summer

On the 5th of August I paddled the Bungay Loop with the children in Corfyn.

















We launched at Roaring Arch Bridge, this is looking back upstream as we drifted down the gravel riffle:























Next it was under the A143 and back in to bright sunlight:


















Then we paddled down to Bungay Sluice portage point round the Loop, mostly with me paddling and the children picnicking. Finally we walked back to collect the car through the town centre, via the cafe with the gluten free cakes.

Summer sunset from the garden

Just a sunset from last summer, 4th of August








Friday, 14 October 2016

Walberswick last Summer

Another day from last Summer, July 23rd this time. Crabbing, paddling and some swimming at Walbersick with Mike and Val.


















Paddling Corfyn with the children, having forgotten to put their buoyancy aids on. Luckily we were probably only in three feet of water:
















Mike had a turn:























Then over the sand dunes for a swim off of the beach. Tolerably warm:




















Thursday, 13 October 2016

Picnic at Stiffkey last Summer

A day from last Summer, 28th July, up at Stiffkey salt marshes on a neap tide. Corfyn unloaded from the car and waiting with the picnic and paddling gear on board:























The day started with crabbing on the bridge while we waited for friends to arrive:













































All on board to paddle the short distance to the corner sandy picnic place just down creek:






































Picnic time:

















Paddling Corfyn on my own after the picnic:

















Tony's turn:























A good time was had by all.

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Corfyn on the upper tidal Blyth

Paddled from Blythburgh Bridge, launching by the A12, up to Blyford Bridge and back down. Upstream with the last of the flood tide against a brisk westerly breeze then back down with the ebb and a tail wind. Fantastic paddle, hot and sunny.












Launch point with the last of the flood tide still pouring up under the rather busy A12:

















The first section was open with a decent fringe of reeds which kept some of the wind off and the last of the flood tide helped:













Working upstream the river became narrower, much more sheltered and somewhat obstructed. The flood had finished by now and the ebb just begun so it was safe to squeeze under. Lying down in the boat to do so!

















Just emerging on the upstream side, looking back at the squeeze. This was HW on a 5.12m tide at Walberswick. Another 40cm and it would have needed a wait or a portage:

















At HW the flow of the (very dry!) Blyth drops in to a foot or so of water rather than on to flat concrete:

















The river above is quite different from the tidal section:

















Looking downstream from under Blyford Bridge. Time to head back:


















At times this upper section got quite narrow:

















But there were lots of cattle for company:












Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Daniel and the kayak

Daniel's first try in a kayak. With the keel moulded in to these sit-ons it's a matter of get in and go!























Now a doting relative has said he does not have to wait for Christmas for his own kayak!

Friday, 2 September 2016

Memories of Cowley Steps

This is Cowley Steps on the river Exe just north of Exeter. We visited last week as part of a holiday in North Devon. This is where I finished the Exe Descent marathon race, somewhat prematurely, by breaking my paddles. Back in the late 1970's. The river was in high flood at the time and there was no way to avoid being rotated where the slope meets the wall and curls over... This is very low summer level. The race was after an overnight downpour.

















I didn't leave the boat at that point but tried to push up off of the bottom to stay in to the race. That's probably when I snapped my paddle. I dropped over the next drop more or less sideways and got stuck in the stopper. A helpful frogman (provided by the race organisers!) lifted my bow out and pushed it downstream towards the last drop. That's the stopper I got stopped in, showing rather white.
















At this point I realised one paddle blade was missing, by trying to use it for support. This proved to be time to swim over the last drop, under the bridge and drag the boat to the bank. No way to replace the paddle, so that was it.

















I've heard, on T'internet, that Cowley Steps was designed by an engineer with a pathological hatred of all kayak paddlers.

Amen, brother. Amen!

Friday, 8 July 2016

Self Heal

Forgot to put this one up. Self Heal is one of those exquisitely pretty flowers which are so common, a bit like Ground Ivy, but still worth looking at:







Orchids around Metfield

A pleasant hour at Winks Meadow. Among the thousands of Pyramidal Orchids all over the meadow there was a small group of about six of these. Each had that neat little circle of crushed grass in front of them which says "Multiple photographers were here". So I took some pictures:























They don't look like anything on the web site for Winks Meadow or on the information board there. After some time browsing the web and my pocket guide I decided they must be the same as these:























This is from a year or two back on a reserve just outside Lowestoft where Southern Marsh Orchids are the predominant species. So I'm guessing that's what they are.

The overwhelming orchids for July are the Pyramidal Orchids which are, happily, pretty ubiquitous all over the place.























The meadow itself is covered in them:



















On the way back to Weybread I had to stop for a group of Common Spotted Orchids growing on the verge (with a few Pyramidals mixed in). This one came out nicely:














Thursday, 7 July 2016

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Orchids on the A146

Pyramidal Orchids are just coming in to flower on the A146 near Beccles