Last week we ran a whitewater adventure in central Burgundy, France.
We had a non stop week paddling Le Chalaux, La cure and even doing a few descents of La Saut de Goloux (a 20ft slide on a small tributary to La Cure). We were living outside for the full week, sleeping in hammocks and tents. We spent one of the nights on a small island in the middle of the lake which feeds Le Chalaux, our main river of choice for the trip.
On the evening of arrival, over a top quality BBQ in the sunshine, each person set themselves some goals for the week, they included; boofing, surfing, gaining confidence in higher grade water, refining existing skills, rolling in anger and just generally being able to have a good time on the river without fear of carnage!
The following day we got up for 8:00am French breakfast and then headed straight to the river Cure for a skills session to get used to the kit and see how each other paddled on a fun grade II jet. After a late lunch we headed to Le Chalaux where we spent the rest of Monday and the whole of Tuesday, finding out the characteristics of the river and discovering what the lines were for doing a straight run down.
On Wednesday we took the morning off the river and spent some time on the lake working on rolling skills and flat water paddling skills. We then headed to the top section of Le Chalaux to do a moving water skills session, working on river running techniques and boat handling in whitewater.
After a slightly less energetic Wednesday we were all fully fired up to get back on the rapids again, we spent the day combining the skills from the previous three days and putting them to the test on some of the more technical parts of the top section. The afternoon seemed to turn out to be a bit of a “game changer” for most, everybody feeling much more confident on the river in comparison to the first couple of days. We then headed back upstream to the lake which feeds the river and had an awesome evening/Friday morning living on the island enjoying food cooked on the fire and having fun in the water.
Friday afternoon took us to a new location for paddling, the upper section of La Cure, which is also the location of La Saut de Goloux, a 20ft slide. We spent the afternoon reading the lines of these slightly steeper rapids and also did a couple of descents of La Saut de Goloux.
It was back to business as normal on Le Chalaux for our final river day on Saturday. After a couple of laps in the morning of the now familiar top section, we did a full lap, linking the sections of rapids together without any portages. It was a fun way to finish and really showed the progression in the groups paddling ability, now all in complete control for the full decent, even in the bigger rapids.
It was then an early start on Sunday ready for the journey back home. All in all, we had a fantastic time running the week, and it sure looked like all who came did as well. We will be running more of these in the future so keep your eyes out on our website for more dates!
Below are a few photos and a video made by Sophie Rooney.