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Special “High Flow” Tour Series

Guided Kayak Tours on the Murray River during high flows.Kayaking through creeks which are normally dry, on a high flow guided kayak tour.

At Canoe Adventures we are SO EXCITED that the Murray River is in a period of high flows and we can offer a special “High Flow” Tour Series.  The last time we saw the river with flows as high as those predicted for this November/December, was in 2011, so get ready for an awesome time of exploring places that are often inaccessible; and creeks that don’t often flow.  Feel yourself unwind as you drift over floodplains amongst the redgums.

During this period of high flows we are offering a special series of guided tours, as detailed below. “But is it safe?”, I hear you ask.  Our qualified instructor will take you to places where the flow is mild to moderate  Please note that we don’t recommend these routes for unguided hires.

We have a number of options, as listed below.  Please note however that they are subject to change or cancellation according to weather (e.g. strong wind), flow, vehicular access and attaining minimum participant numbers.  Our booking terms and conditions are available here

Times indicated include vehicle transfer back to our starting point.  Trips are one way, going with the flow.

Bookings are essential and can be made by phoning Kym on 04211 676 45

  1. Katarapko Floodplains Tour – Saturday 5th November, 8 a.m. meeting at Lock 4.

From Lock 4, along Sawmill Creek, Eckert’s Creek, The Splash, and Katarapko Creek, to Milich’s Landing.  Highlights of this tour will include paddling in a redgum forest, along picturesque Sawmill creek, the Winkie Floodplains and Katarapko Creek.

Approximately 6 ½ hours  $70/single kayak, $105/double kayak

2, Rumpagunyah Exploration Tour (In the Pike River Area) – Saturday 12th November, 2pm, meeting at the Berri Visitor Information Centre

Exploring the rarely visited gems that are Rumpagunyah and Tanyaka creeks. (This loop tour will include some paddling against a mild current.)

Approximately 4 ½ hours  $60/single kayak, $90/double kayak

3 The Floodplain Redgum Tour – Sunday 20th November, 1:30 pm, meeting at Lock 4

From Lock 4, along Sawmill Creek and into the start of Katarapko Creek.  Highlights of this tour will be paddling in a redgum forest and along picturesque Sawmill Creek which is inaccessible except for times such as this.

Approximately 4 ½ hours  $60/single kayak, $90/double kayak

4. Katarapko and Minor Creeks Tour – Saturday 26th November, 9am, meeting at the Berri Visitor Information Centre

From South Eckert’s Creek, along Sawmill creek and Katarapko Creek to Milich’s Landing.  Highlights will include paddling over the floodplains, amongst the towering redgums and straight over the top of the Stone Weir without having to portage.

Approximately 6 hours    $70/single kayak, $105/double kayak

5. Horseshoe Lagoons and Yabby Creek Bird Survey Tour – Saturday 3rd December, 8am, meeting at Loxton Caravan Park (near the big pelican)

A rare opportunity to enjoy a relaxed Paddle through the Horseshoe Lagoons and along Yabby Creek on Katarapko Island while participating in a Citizen Science Bird Survey. Experienced bird watching guides Peter Waanders & Helga Kieskamp of Bellbird Birding Tours will lead the tour and help you identify more birds than you would imagine (46 different species on the most recent survey of this area). This tour is offered for free due to collaboration with Natural Resources SA Murray-Darling Basin.  Registrations are available here.

Approximately 4 ½ hours.

6. Berri Floodplain Tour – Sunday 4th December, 2pm at the Berri Visitor Information Centre

A short circuit near Berri, paddling around the sandhills on the floodplains.  A good short tour for all ages including a short stop-over in the sandhills.

Approximately 2 hours. $40/single kayak, $60/double kayak

7. Eckert’s & Sawmill Creek Tour – Saturday 10th December, 9am at the Berri Visitor Information Centre.

From Berri to Eckert’s Creek, South Eckert’s creek, Sawmill Creek and the first few kilometres of Katarapko Creek.  Highlights will include paddling over the floodplains and amongst the towering redgums.

Approximately 4 ½ hours. $60/single kayak, $90/double kayak

8. Lyrup Gurra Backwaters Tour – Sunday December 11th 1pm at the Lyrup Riverfront Reserve – downstream end.

Near Berri, the highlight will be exploring the backwaters between Lyrup and Gurra.

Approximately 3 hours. $50/single kayak, $75/double kayak

9. Our regular Sunset Tour Sunday December 18th, 6:15pm (or almost anytime, by request)

While not specifically a high flow tour, we will still be offering our regular guided Sunset Kayak Tours.  Join us for a leisurely tour, enjoying the beautiful wetlands of Gurra Gurra Creek, and the evening colours of the magnificent sandstone Bookpurnong cliffs. Sunset is a magical time on the river: the calm often settles, the birdlife is most active, and the reflections are magical.

Approximately 3 hours. $75/adult, $50/child, (family of 2 adults & 2 children/$210)

 

 

 

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Can I kayak if I don’t know how to swim?

Sometimes people ask us if they can still come kayaking with us if they don’t know how to swim, and we always answer  YES, provided that the considerations listed below have been attended to.  It is important to note that we are talking about kayaking in the Murray River and the side creeks in our area, which  are usually slow moving and calm, and the bank is never too far away.  (We don’t recommend ocean kayaking or white-water kayaking for non-swimmers.)

Considerations:

Life Jackets

  • Marine law in South Australia dictates that you MUST wear a PFD at all times when kayaking. PFD stands for Personal Flotation Device.
  • Our quality PFDs have plenty of adjustment to make them fit well and feel comfortable, and we insist that you wear them and check that they are fitted correctly.   Wearing one of these makes you unsinkable, so even if you do tip in, you are not going to drown.

Fear

  • Even though the life jacket will make you unsinkable, some people, with a strong fear of the water, may panic if they tip in, and instead of acting rationally, may cause problems for themselves and their fellow kayakers –    If you think that you might panic if you tip in, we suggest some trial time in a PFD, in a pool or the river, so that you can reassure yourself that the jacket will indeed keep you up and there is no cause for alarm.

But – what if I do tip in?

If you’re on a tour, our qualified and experienced guide/instructor would ask you to hold onto his kayak while he empties the water out of yours, and then he will instruct you on how to get back in, and give you a hand.  If getting back in is too hard for you, he will help you to the side of the creek and assist you there.  He’ll also have a towel handy if needed and a hot cuppa.  You can view the technique here.

If you’re hiring, rather than going on a guided tour, so our experienced staff are not there to help in the rare event of a capsize, simply kick your legs to push/pull your kayak back to shore, empty it out, and start again.  We strongly suggest that a non-swimmer always go kayaking with someone who knows what they are doing.  It is good practice for no-one to go kayaking alone.

You’re unlikely to fall in because

  • We won’t run tours or hire out kayaks in dangerously windy or high-flow conditions.
  • Our kayaks and canoes have been selected for their stability – it is very rare for anyone paddling with us to fall in.

But even if you DO fall in, you can be assured that all of our cockpits are wide and open – you won’t get trapped in.

Not sure and want to discuss it more? – give us a ring – 04211 676 45

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This Saturday 10th September, 2016, will see the Berri Kayaking Group and interested others exploring new territory near Loxton at Yabby Creek and the Horseshoe Lagoons. Click here for a detailed trip report.   We will meet at 8 at the riverfront at the Loxton Caravan Park (Look for the trailer full of kayaks).  Let me know if you’d like a lift from Berri – I’ll be leaving home at 7.30am.  We expect to be back at the cars late morning.

Please bring: – a few water bottles,  snacks, sunnies and hat, suncream, sneakers or kayaking shoes, quick-dry clothing and a change of clothes, including longs and a jumper.  Kym will have dry-bags for sale if you need one.

Cost will be $25 per single and $17.50 for a seat in a double (and as always – you don’t need to have a partner for your double – we can team you up with someone) People supplying their own kayaks will be charged $5 (This will cover insurance, admin etc.)

Spaces are limited.  Bookings need to be made by phone/text to Kym on 04211 676 45 before 7pm on Friday.

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Increased flows into South Australia at the moment are presenting  a great opportunity to explore places that aren’t always accessible. Last weekend  (27-8-16) we explored from the regulator opposite the Loxton Caravan Park, travelled up Yabby Creek and into the horseshoe lagoons.

We were fortunate that the levels were exactly right – just low enough for us to limbo under the regulator, and deep enough to be able to paddle right through to the lagoons.

Increased flows into South Australia - still able to go through the regulator

Some limbo-ing required.

One of the highlights of the trip, for us, was the clarity of the water.  Normally when we paddle the water is fairly turbid, but on this trip we could see clearly to the bottom, and the bottom was land that is not always under water. Other highlights included a nest full of swans eggs, flowering lignums, identifying an Australian Hobby (a raptor), some excitable striped mountain ducklings, swans, and the largest flock of Australian Coot I’ve ever seen.

mountain ducklings - found while exploring during increased flows.

Mountain Ducklings

Increased flow into South Australia has filled Yabby Creek, near Loxton SA

Yabby Creek, near Loxton SA

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