No Van = No Paddling??? Think Again!

When my van was towed away by the AA on Monday, my plans of going paddling the day after seemed to fade away.  However with Mother Bear offering me her Toyota Yaris to help me get around for the day, it seemed like an adventure could be back on the cards.  However the Yaris has no roof rack and no kit space, but for an inflatable SUP that is no problem!

My Red Paddle Co Explorer 13'2" fits nicely in the boot of the Yaris

As I am currently in training for our Maltese SUP adventure I was keen to get some distance in so decided to head off up to Windermere to paddle its full 18km from Fell Foot to Waterhead.

Parking up, pumping up and packing took no more than 20 mins

Even though the weather was due to be a bit damp throughout the day, I was expecting a very light breeze blowing me all the way up towards Ambleside throughout the trip.  At the moment Im using a Red Paddle Co Explorer 13'2" which seems perfect for the type of adventures I want to go on with a SUP.  Check it out here  and you can contact Andy at Go Kayaking Northwest to arrange to try one or buy one 

I was keeping track of my progress with my Garmin GPS throughout and was averaging around 6kmh throughout which I am really pleased with at the moment.  I certainly can go faster, but Im a long way away from keeping that up for 18km! 

As I was on a "one man, one board, one way" type journey I was going to need to get back to where I started at Fell Foot at the south end of Windermere.  Usually with kayaks/canoes this typically involves needing two vehicles or an extra shuttle back and forth.  This involves leaving whatever you have just been paddling on its own at the end of your journey whilst you return back to the start to get your vehicle.  

It was at this stage that my inflatable SUP showed once again how versatile it is!

Removing the fin, deflation and roll away only takes about 5 minutes

Packing down into a very portable package, traveling with the SUP was going to be a breeze

5 minutes later I was ready to head back to my car at the start!  If I had brought a big enough drybag rucksac and had been using a 3 piece split it would have been a bit easier to put it all in one bag, but still it was more portable than my open canoe!

All that was left was to catch a lift back to the start, fortunately due to the amount of traffic and the kindness of the local people, it only took about 5 minutes before I was already on my way!

The 18km journey took 3 hours and 20 minutes which I am really happy with and I managed to average 6km an hour moving speed.  Bring on more SUP adventures!