We met at Skerries Yacht/Sailing Club tonight as we were going out on the water to do some kayaking with Outdoor Dublin in order to complete some of our Paddling Adventure Skills badges. We met at 6:45 so it was s a bit earlier than usual. Unfortunately Ciaran couldn’t attend tonight and a few of the scouts are away in the Gaeltacht already so we had 19 scouts and 3 leaders.
We met with the instructors, Brian, Ann, & Conor, and went to get some wetsuits. Some of the scouts had their own shorties and we told them to put one of the full wetsuits on top to be extra warm. They thanked us later. Brendan has his own wetsuit, of course, but unfortunately they did not have any adult size wetsuits for Alan and Fiona so they could not go out on the water. They were bitterly disappointed since neither of them will be around next week.We’ll just have to make sure they get to go when we are on Summer Camp.
We moved down on to the beach, where the instructors got all of the scouts divided into the sit on top kayaks and went over some basics of how to sit and how to hold the paddle. When this was done, we had to carry the kayaks down to the water and start paddling. The wind was blowing on shore so it was very difficult for beginners to get going. We headed out as best we could towards Hoare Rock. Some of the scouts found it more difficult than others, but eventually everyone made it out to the meeting point at the far end of the beach.
We had time for a quick splash about in the water out of our boats before getting back in and heading back to the start. It was a little easier on the way back as most of the scouts had gotten used to how to steer the kayaks.
When we landed back on the beach, we had to carry the boats back up to the slipway and deposit the paddles and buoyancy aids. We then went back to the van to get our bags and get changed, and a nice hot drink that Brendan had told everyone to bring.
When everyone was changed and warm and dry, we went down to the grass beside the RNLI station on Red Island. We played a quick game – it was a trust exercise, but lets just say it turned out to be a nasty trick played by Brendan where everyone ended up on the ground when they thought their friends would support them. It was a beautiful location to finish our meeting as the sun was beginning to set. We are really looking forward to next week’s meeting where we will be doing it all again.