The tale of 2 Krazy Kayakers embarking on a rather adventurous charity event! Kayaking from London to Sheffield in aid of the Premature baby Charity, Bliss
Questions I have been asked
Q Was it hard?
A Yes it was a living hell, but it was good as well.
Q Best bit?
A Setting off after months of planning and we get off onto a flat, calm Thames, tunes the wife put on my ipod were very emotional, obstacles and problems( sure beats suduko), shooting down tidal Trent that baby sure does move, home coming, money raised.
Q Worst bit?
A Having to set up camp at night in the cold and putting my gloves on in a morning!
Q Best laugh?
A To many to detail, swan attack, traffic chaos on the A road, tunnel vision, water fever when you see up hills on canals, pimp my canoe.
Q Low point?
A Hypothermia was near on two occasions.
Q Every close to giving up?
A Never even entered my head, it was a case of when, not if we would finish. Some people said I could not do it and I put this in my head for motivation if needed when I was ready to quit but never needed to call on it.
Q Do it again?
A Not the same stretch, but maybe ……………to………………….!!!
Q What about canoeing in the future?
A Yes bring it on! I love it. Have found a brill hobby. Just need another boat and another plan.
Q What you going to miss?
A Planning for this event since July o7, I have done nothing but plan for 11days in April , it's left a hole in my life.
If you have given or helped or read this blog thank you.
Dave was on radio Sheffield again this morning.
If you want to listen then scroll right to the bottom and turn the video off first or you won't be able to hear it :-)
It’s now 24 hours since Dave & I arrived back into Sheffield to what I can only describe as a welcome far beyond anything I could ever have dreamed of! Banners, bagpipes, a kayak armada and a huge crowd ensured it was a moment that brought a lump to my throat and a moment I’ll never forget.
Looking back now it’s still a little hard to believe what we have achieved, 275 miles in kayaks from London to Sheffield in 10 days raising what’s looking like a final figure of around £2500, I know that money will be put to the very best of use. I don’t mind admitting that this has been the single most difficult experience of my life, it seemed at times like everything was against us, from bad weather to all those dreaded locks, we faced it all and came through it. I’m so proud of what we have achieved.
There are a few people I need to thank and so I’m going to do it here. Matt from the Leamington Boat centre (www.leamboatcentre.com) for all his advice at the very start, Deb Mather for highlighting our cause to all of the relevant media, Cath for setting up the website and all your support, Uncle Colin for getting us to London, Fran and Dave for letting us take over your house, the various British Waterways lock keepers for all of your advice and for granting us a safe passage along the way and the many people who stopped us for a chat and to wish us the best of luck. The Hemel Hampstead Canoe Club for letting us spend the night in your gaff even though you didn’t know us from Adam (excuse the pun) and the land lords of the Ferry Boat Inn, Church Laneham for taking us in and keeping us warm at our lowest moment, you’ll never know just how grateful we were. Of course to everyone who sponsored us, without you the whole trip would have been for nothing!
To my family for all of your messages of support both before and during the trip and for being there at the finish line one and all - I love you all and am so proud to call myself one of yours - Rocky won!
To Katie - where do I start! Thanks for all your patience before hand, all your running around during and for being there to sort me out after - coming home to you is what kept me going, I love you all the world Barnpot, thank you!
And finally to the other half of the Blisworth Two and co-founder of ‘Pimp My Kayak’! Dave - you are a living legend. Never in all my life have I met anyone so determined, so committed and so supportive as you. I wouldn’t have got through this without you and I take my hat off to you, the biggest pile of respect I give to you and to quote Superman Christopher Reeve himself, ’A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles’ - that’s you - be proud.
And so that’s it. Would I do it again? Well not today, but maybe tomorrow…..
In the meantime, I have a kayak for sale, one owner from new and used just the once, 275 genuine miles on the clock, very comfortable on long journeys and would suit similar plonker thinking of doing something a little bit mad but very worthwhile!
Thanks for reading and much love
The day started off with the boys having a bit of a well deserved lie in as they didn't have many miles to go to get back to Sheffield.They set off around 930am and paddled as far as Tinsley Locks where they met up with the Sheffield Canoe Club. They had very kindly said they would like to follow Adam and Dave into the Quays. At around 12pm Dave called me to say they were on track and due to land in the Quays on time. At around 1.25pm Adam called Katie to say they would be 5 minutes or so. We all waited impatiently. Adams family were there and had made a fabulous banner saying 'Yo Bliss, you did it!'. It even had a picture of a Kayaker on it. Also lots of friends and colleagues were in attendance to congratulate them. We all got into position on the bridge to cheer them in and Gordon Dale, who had kindly come to play the bagpipes, stood on the side of the canal. Dave Wood, Katies Dad, had had a crash course in how to open the lock so he could let them in. Then in the distance we saw them. In they came slowly followed by the Sheffield Canoe Club.
I was stood on the side of the canal with Corey and Katie was at the side of me. Gordon began to play his bagpipes and i must admit to shedding a tear.
It was quite emotional seeing them finish this 300 mile trek. They have faced awful weather and are really in effect novice Kayakers and i couldn't be more proud!
Dave opened the lock and in they paddled. Dave immediately did an eskimo roll and exited his kayak, Adam paddled to the side and got out of his boat, i don't think he wanted to get wet!
They both greeted family and friends and then Dave decided to get wet again and dived in like the maniac he is! They posed for many photographs and there was a photographer there from East Midlands trains. All in all it's been a really great day. Both of them should be extremely proud of themselves, i know i am. I'd just like to say a massive thank you to everyone who has helped. Far too many people to name but you know who you are. And a massive thank you to everyone who donated money. Today we have smashed through the £2000 mark with more pledges to come so it's been pretty amazing.
I'm sure that Dave and Adam will be adding there own Epilogues so please continue to read and watch other for more pictures!
Well, what an amazing trip these guys have done, its fantastic that they have gotten through the awful weather, freezing cold 5am starts and sun burn!
They plan to arrive into Sheffield at 13.30 tomorrow afternoon. The Sheffield Canoe Club are going to meet them at the last lock near Sheffield Arena and paddle into Sheffield Quays behind them. Gordon Dale from East Midlands Trains has kindly offered to play the bagpipes as the kayakers sweep round the corner into Sheffield Basin! EMT's Comms Team has also arranged for a photographer to meet them at the finish line.
Family, friends and colleagues will be meeting them to welcome them back! If anyone would like to come and cheer them on to the finish line, i know Adam & Dave would love to see you there!
Well, thats all from me as Adam will be adding his posts from tomorrow. I would just like to say thankyou so much to everyone who has sponsored and supported them throughout this. I hope you have enjoyed reading our blog updates for the past 9 days!
Well the Kayakers set off on their final full day of paddling at 05.30 this morning! They departed from Keadby Junction (Keadby Port), the sun was coming up and looked set to be a lovely day.
09.30 - They have reached Thorne, done 10 miles and just having some thing to eat!
15.00 - The kayakers are somewhere near Conisborough but I cannot remember exactly where. They are really pushing hard to get as close to Sheffield as they can to make the last day a leisurely one! Dave said that they've had a few head winds but luckily the seat belt signs didn't come on!
21.00 - The kayakers ended today at Rotherham Central Ralway Station. They did 34 miles today! Without food!! I picked them up so they could get themselves scrubbed up for their final 5 miles in Sheffield Quays!