Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Can I canoe you up the river....

NEVER let it be said that I don't do my market research....Yesterday, I went out to play with cardiganbayactive .

I was asked by some people coming in August if there was any outdoor activities in the area, and after a quick look on the internet, I conacted CBA to ask if they had a daily programme running over the summer? Oh and by the way, as they outsourced accomodation, would they like some of my cards? They came straight back and invited me to an event (Monday) to try some of their activities myself. Object of the exercise was to build links with some of the local accomodation providers, and hopefully manage to exchange some business between us. After a cup of tea and chat, we decided that we would start the day with canoeing.

Canoeing up the Teifi from the wildlife centre was absolutely magical, we went across a small set of rapids, and continued upstream for a while to one of the deepest parts of the river, where the water was so still, the steep sides of the valley and trees were mirrored in the water. There are otters in the river, unfortunately we didn't see any yesterday, but we did see a magnificent pair of herons and four red kites circling overhead. Turning and coming down stream, was a lot faster ride and we shot through the rapids this time, before returning to Cardigan for lunch.

In the afternoon, the choice of activities were sea kayaking, or coasteering. I REALLY wasn't sure that I was up to coasteering, but was persuaded to give it a go, after being promised that they wouldn't make me jump off anything, or do anything I didn't feel comfortable with. We headed off to Ceibwr Bay, nr Moylgrove, which is just over the 'border' in Pembrokshire. I've never been there before and it is a fantasic place, with wonderful geology and wild flowers.

It was quite cool by then and the sea was a lot choppier than I would normally venture into, but suitably kitted out in a wetsuit, buoyancy aid and a helmet, and with bucket loads of bravado I set off into the waves after the very capable Fiona! It soon became apparent that I really HAD bitten off more than I could chew. To be honest after the mornings activities I was quite tired, and a couple of small attempted scrambles, and wave dunkings later I told her that I couldn't do any more. The sea kept knocking me off my feet, and I was slipping and sliding all over the place on the seaweed. I felt that if I'd gone on any further I would have been a complete liability to get safely back to dry land - as it was she ended up towing me to shore floating on my back, as I simply couldn't stand up! She took me back to the cars, and I sent her and the other novice coasteer back to carry on, while I dried off. I still LIKE the idea of pootling about the bottom of the cliffs in the sea, inspecting the normally inaccessible crevices and stuff...but unless it's a nice hot day and the sea is like a mill pond, I think I should leave it to the young and fit!

Anyway upshot of all this is that there WILL be a weekly program of events from cardiganbayactive all through the summer months, everything from family stuff to more challenging adult sessions, so if anyone comes to stay here, I should be able to advise them what is running, and give them a code to book on with that will give them a £5 per person discount. Simples.


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