Last night’s SUP Club was never going to be a busy one – gusting Force 5+ wind and rainshowers understandably put many people off. Plus the windsurfing fraternity had race night down at Chalkwell… But a small, yet perfectly formed, group of five (Julia, Claire, Alex, El and Dunc) met up at Hayes Leisure Park on the Crouch to see what was possible.
It was blowing alright, with some big gusts rattling up the creek, but the water stayed flat so we decided to head upwind into Battlesbridge. 40 minutes of hard paddling later, under moody skies and accompanied by dozens of swans who took flight in front of us every so often, we made it to The Barge Inn at the bridge. A muddy scramble up the bank later we celebrated with a swift half before an even swifter downwinder back to Hayes Leisure Park in about 15 minutes. Huge thanks to the clubhouse team at www.leisureparksuk.co.uk/hayes/ who welcomed us into their bar and even cooked us a huge bowl of chips for our well-earnt traditional post paddle pint.
Despite the weather – and this was undoubtedly the windiest SUP Club yet – we had a surprisingly enjoyable paddle: so the question remains, how windy is too windy for SUP Club?!?
If you fancy joining SUP Club, all we ask is that you have some paddling experience (if not, check out our SUP Lessons) – we call Wednesday SUP Club on our Facebook page and Wet’n’Dry SUP calendar location depending on weather and tide conditions. If you have your own kit, just turn up and you’ll be very welcome. If not, we do offer limited SUP hire for £25.