Kingfisher and its members involve themselves in many forms of paddling. Whether its local or further a field. We have formal sessions and there are is a great deal of paddling that members organise themselves through our Facebook group.
Local paddling involves regular sessions as well as impromptu ones including visiting Thames Weirs or just relaxing on the rivers, canals and backwaters around Abingdon-on-Thames and the surrounding area.
Trips further afield are regularly arranged some of these a more formal club trips and a great deal more are informally arrange by members. These trips can take members far and wide from Wales and Devon to the Alps and beyond. But more often than not Devon! Details are circulated via email and the clubs Facebook group and added to the clubs even calendar.
We hold and maintain a supply of boats and equipment, but this is primarily intended for training courses. Details on borrowing club equipment can be found HERE.
The Pathfinders Youth Section (formerly a a separate club and now incorporated into Kingfisher) has been established for over 25 years and provides progressive development canoe and kayaking activities for the 11-18 age range.
Activities include Introductory and Improver courses, monday evening river club sessions for members, exploratory trips, white water training sessions on local weirs, day and weekend trips to whitewater rivers and an opportunity to take part in an alpine whitewater kayaking trip.
We try to cater for a range of abilities and interests from those with little or no experience to those who want to develop their activity to a higher level. If you are interested in joining or just finding out more please contact the Youth Development Officer in the first instance
Child Protection and Welfare information can be found here.
Pathfinders – Courses
2017 Course are to be decided
Kingfisher – Wednesday Evening Sessions
During the summer months Wednesday Evenings are the mainstay of the club calendar. All members are welcome and encouraged to come along; whether it’s to just bimble along the Thames or play in the weirs at Abingdon or Sutton Courtenay.
From the beginning of May a duty officer will be at the club hut every week to perform the following duties:
- Open the hut.
- Record details of non-members on temporary membership forms
- Record details of who borrows kit and ensure it is returned.
- Collect money from those who borrow kit.
Club members and non-members who wish to visit the club, and can paddle to BCU 1* level are welcome to join these sessions. Note the duty officer is not responsible for looking after or coaching any paddlers, though of course they may if they wish to.
On the last Wednesday of every month we will be offering taster sessions where people who have not paddled before may come along and have a go. The club will ensure these sessions are staffed by a BCU level 2 coach.
Mixed Sessions – Sunday Mornings
During the Winter months we try and formalise a rota to enable access to the club huts on Sunday mornings so that members can paddle between 0900 and 1200. If you would like to volunteer to cover some of these dates you will have to be able, and willing to:
- Go out paddling for a few hours on a Sunday morning. We have access to the Wilsham Road site from 0900 until 1200.
- Be onsite to open up the hut for anyone who wants to borrow equipment. If you don’t have a key for the hut we will provide you with one.
- Be capable of looking after paddlers on the water. You don’t need to have any qualifications but must be able to handle yourself and be willing to look after others whilst paddling on the Thames. If you’re unsure about this but would like to help then let us know and we’ll do our best to make this happen.
If you can help please let a member of the committee know and we’ll add you to the list. We’ll put the list on the club website and Facebook group as well as publish it in the Trasher once we’ve a few names on it. As the season progresses we’ll keep it updated. The idea is to keep it quite flexible so if people want to swap sessions at short notice that would be fine.
On the last Thursday of every month we will be offering taster sessions where people who have not paddled before may come along and have a go. The club will ensure these sessions are staffed by a BCU coach or appropriately experienced paddlers.
All of these sessions start from the club hut at 6:15.
If you don’t have your own kit then we can provide a boat, paddles, BA and spray deck though we do ask for non-members to give a contribution to the upkeep of the equipment from their second session onwards.
You will need to provide the following: Neoprene shoes/wet-suit boots or other shoes suitable for use on/in the water, lightweight windproof jacket, tracksuit or thermal trousers (or shorts if warm). Thermal t-shirt, woolly jumper or fleece. YOU SHOULD BE PREPARED TO GET WET IN THESE CLOTHES. A towel and change of clothes will also be needed.
Details of our 2017 courses can be found on this poster 2017_BEGIBNNERS_poster-v1.
The Beginners courses usually start in the middle of May run for 6 weeks. One course runs on Tuesdays whilst the second run on Thursdays in the evenings between 6.15 pm and 9.00pm. Full details of this year’s course will be publicised on this site when the details are confirmed.
This course is designed for people looking for an introduction to paddling and would like the opportunity to work towards the BCU 1star award. It will be run from our site at Wilsham Road, Abingdon between the rowing club and sailing club.
The only requirements are that you should be able to swim 50 metres in your clothes, be over 18 and be prepared to have some fun and get wet.
We will provide kayaks, canoes, paddles, buoyancy aids, helmets and spray decks. Please feel free to bring your own if you have this equipment. You should also bring clothes that you are prepared to get wet in e.g. neoprene shoes or wet-suit boots (not trainers!), a lightweight windproof jacket, tracksuit or thermal trousers (or shorts if warm), thermal t-shirt, woolly jumper or fleece. A towel and change of clothes are advisable for when the session is finished
We also run an improvers course once a year for those for people having a 1 star award and looking to progress and work towards their 2 star. Details of this will be posted on this site and distributed to members when they are confirmed.
KCC also arranges other courses and assessments for it members including 2 star, 3 star and BCU Foundation Safety and Rescue. We also organise more advance paddling and safety training (usually arranged by members as a group) with external course providers as required.
We are able to advise members on the best way for them to improve their paddling skills and help you find the appropriate training for your needs.
Pool sessions – An ideal opportunity for club members to practice rolling and other skills in warm clean water. A selection of boats, paddles and spray decks are available at the pool. these sessions are run regularly during the winter months – see HERE for more details