Last weekend May 31st saw the first running of a new kayak and canoe race in Athy, Co.Kildare. The Blueway Canoe Marathon hosted by Waterways Ireland is the first race offering an ultra distance course for kayaks in Ireland to my knowledge. With three courses on offer, 10km, 21km and an ultra 46km there was something for everyone. Starting in Athy the courses went north on the canal towards Monasterevin with portages at different points for each course and on to the River Barrow to head south again to Athy.
This river section posed a few issues with kayak choice. I was all set on using my carbon Elio Sprint for the race but the day before I got some info that the river might not be deep enough in places to accommodate the under stern rudder and that an over stern might be safer. With that I loaded up my Vantage River K1. It has an over stern rudder and is comfortable to paddle but is slower than the Elio and has the wash hanging characteristics of a bulldozer!
AT Oracle paddle review
The Oracle is the high angle, big blade touring paddle from Adventure Technology, offering more powerful stroke and stability than their other touring paddles. I was kindly sent these paddles to try out for a few weeks. This is the first time I have used AT paddles, having seen many people using AT paddles both on whitewater and the sea I was interested to try them out for myself.
Kayak instructor, athlete, business owner and outdoor enthusiast from the west coast of Ireland.
Paddle & Pedal Blog HERE