Welcome to my website, this is the online journal of my life on the water. Currently based in Christchurch, New Zealand, I have been keeping a record of my various kayaking adventures for over a decade now. Hopefully you’ll find something useful or interesting here, whether you are a local kayaker or a visitor from overseas, new to the sport or an old hand.
If you are expecting extreme adventures in exotic locations, sorry, better try Ben Browns’ or Graham Charles’ websites, my adventures are a little more low key. Adventures are an important part of life, so remember to pursue your own and live life to the fullest.
News and Upcoming Highlights
A new year has begun and I’ve managed to get a good trip down the Ashley Gorge under my belt already. A new position at work and a change of roster has put the brakes on a planned trip to Murchison but I’m sure there will be other opportunities before the season ends. Things are looking a little brighter, work is picking up again, I have a better job and hopefully we’ll also get some progress on our EQC repairs. I am still looking for a suitable science based job in Christchurch, but until I find one, it looks like I’ll be working in the Queensland for the time being.
There has also been a few other changes, with two Canterbury Rivers returning the their original Māori names, the Waiau River is once again the Waiau Uwha River (the female river) and the Clarence River returns to the Waiau Toa River (the male river). I’ve updated their names in the local rivers sections and will use the new (old) names on subsequent trips down them.
Currently there is a lot of speculating on what the Christchurch Residential Red Zone will look like and what features it will hold. I would certainly like the Avon River to retain some of its’ current “rural” feel and it would be great if there was more native bush areas like the one near our home. More kayak launching points would be appreciated too, especially one on our side of the river near Evelyn Cousins Ave. There were 10 possible options put forward and Regenerate Christchurch is currently reviewing the submissions on the proposals.
One interesting proposal for development in it, is a combined White Water & Surf Park (Wai Huka o Waitaha). This idea seems to be gaining a lot of interest and more details can be found here. This would be a great asset for Christchurch for both residents and tourists alike.
Looking for an interesting read? I’m currently reading New Zealand’s Rivers: An Environmental History by Catherine Knight. The book is an easily read and well illustrated text that explores the relationship between New Zealanders and our rivers, explaining how we have arrived at a crisis point, where fresh water has become our most contested resource and many rivers are too polluted to swim in. New Zealand’s Rivers is a must-read for all New Zealanders interested in the future of our environment and economy. Definitely worth buying a copy, you can order one by clicking on the photo.
Bill Park’s film “Rivering” has been released for free streaming on VIMEO and YouTube. “Rivering” is an Ode to Whitewater: a feature-length film with a different take on the sport, highlighting a diverse group of paddlers with the amazing New Zealand wilderness as a backdrop. Instead of showcasing the skills of a few elite paddlers on extreme white water runs, the film reveals the wide range of people you might meet on the river, with amazing scenery, kayaking and plenty of humour. It explores their motivations, taking you on a journey with them, sharing their adventures and their paddling highs and lows. There is plenty of great paddling footage, incredible locations, interviews and even some historic footage of the early days of white water paddling in New Zealand. You can view a trailer for the film here.
Paddle safe and we’ll see you on the river.