Sunday, 4 March 2012

Pub Paddles

This is my sort of boating. Awaydays on some of the loveliest rivers in the world, with a pub somewhere on the route.
All the technical info you need is in Pub Paddles - where the slipways are, distances and obstructions, what licences you need and so on. Peter Knowles also describes the landscape very clearly and honestly, so you know what to expect.
The core market is with canoeists, of course, but most of the rivers can be rowed or (when I fulfill my new life aim of building one) punted. There are several rivers I had never heard of, such as the Chelmer in Essex (flows through Chelmsford, obviously, but Knowles wisely warns against paddling there. At least, for fun).
I came across Pub Paddles when I went into Foyles the other day to kill some time before a press junket important meeting, and devoured it on the train home. Of course, I would have spent a lot less money if I had bought it on Amazon.
With any guide, the first thing you do is look up your favourite places to ensure the writer shares your prejudices, so I turned to the Hamble pages. The picture of Swanwick is the archtypical boaty photo of two male bottoms sticking out of a canoe, but there in the background is a rowing boat - none other than Gato Negro, being rowed by her designer and builder Max Taylor, Esquire, Blogger of Bursledon.


JP said...

Now that sounds like a brilliant book.

I'll add it to my Amazon wish list and feel guilty I didn't go to a proper book shop like you did.

I was in Foyles last Sunday and spent a happy time wandering between the stacks before it was time to head off to Don Giovanni

Bursledon Blogger said...

Famous at last - don't suppose there's any chance of a complimentary copy from Mt Knowles !!!

O Docker said...

I can certainly understand the joys of rowing or sailing to a pub.

But punting? I question the wisdom of making the return trip in any conveyance that requires the operator to stand upright.

JP said...

Nothing beats punting to the pub.

I'd be happy to demonstrate but I'd need to be in Cambridge on a warm summer's day with appropriate passengers (see latest post) who would of course be impressed at my technique.

Necessary provisions would include strawberries, cream, pimms etc etc

Bursledon Blogger said...

I've always thought a thames punt would go pretty well with a 25HP outboard - would certainly get to the pub before closing time!

Chris Partridge said...

Them's fightin' talk...and given the way the average punt steers, you'd probably end up in the bar without having to get out....