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Displaying items by tag: canoeing

#CANOEING - The Irish Times profiles Irish canoeing contender Ciaran Heurteau ahead of the European Championships in Germany this weekend, where he hopes to claim his place at the 2012 Olympics.

Born in Paris to a Northern Irish mother, Heurteau has competed for Ireland since 2006, and is back to fighting fitness following a shoulder injury last year and a lacklustre World Championships performance in September.

“Looking at how I am coming into this race and how I came into the race at the Worlds, it’s a different feeling," he says. "I have never come into a race as prepared as I am now."

Heurteau joins Patrick Hynes and Eoin Rheinisch - who finished fourth in the K1 slalom in Beijing four years ago - among the Irish contingent in Augsburg for the championships, which began yesterday.

Meanwhile, among the women Olympic hopefuls on the team is Northern Ireland's Hannah Craig, who along with Heurteau and others was interviewed by BBC Sport this week.

Published in Canoeing

#CANOEING - The Coleraine Times reports that a fleet of canoes will 'Paddle the Bann' in a two-day charity challenge from 26-27 May.

Participants will be canoeing and camping on the River Bann some 60km downstream as far as Coleraine in aid of the Ulster Cancer Foundation, which supports local cancer patients and their families.

Sarah Atcheson from the charity said: “This is a unique and wonderful way to experience beautiful Irish countryside and meet new people, while raising funds for local people who have been affected by cancer.

“No previous canoeing experience is necessary as training will be provided and participants will be under the supervision of qualified staff at all times."

Registration is £25 - which covers tents, camping equipment and canoe usage - and all those taking part are asked to raise a minimum of £225 in sponsorship. Participants will be paddling in two-man Canadian canoes, but it's not required to register as a team.

The Coleraine Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Canoeing

#KAYAKING - Two intrepid Irish adventurers are crossing Asia on the first leg of their 16,000 trek along the Silk Roads to Shanghai, The Irish Times reports.

Limerick's Maghnus Smyth and David Burns from Derry will be making their way entirely self-propelled by foot, bicycle, canoe and kayak across the Asian continent to the world's largest city, all in aid of Irish-based charity Self Help Africa.

The duo is currently well into an 8,500km cycle across Iran, Pakistan, India and Nepal to the Tibetan plateau, from where they will run through the Himalayas to the source of the Yangtse.

That point marks the start of an epic 6,300km kayak run along the river's length to Shanghai.

To keep track of their adventures and donate to their charity fund, visit their adventure blog at sand2snowadventures.com.

Published in Kayaking

#CANOEING - The Irish Times reports that Eoin Rheinisch and Ciarán Heurteau have secured their canoe slalom qualification spots for London 2012 after last weekend's selection races in Lucan.

Three places were up for grabs in the men's K1, with the third yet to be confirmed after fourth-placed Patrick Hynes contested a touch on a gate by third-place finisher Sam Curtis.

Canoeing Ireland's recently appointed general manager Karl Dunne said the objection is currently being considered.

Meanwhile, in the women's K1, the qualifying spots went go Hannah Craig, Helen Barnes and Aisling Conlon.

The qualifiers will be part of the European Championships in Augusburg, Germany from 10-13 May, where Olympic spots are available for boats from two countries not already qualified.

Published in Canoeing

#CANOEING - Irish canoe slalom paddler Matthew Sykes has secured a place on the Olympic torch relay this summer.

“I am only one of only 8,000 people selected to carry the London 2012 Olympic torch relay," the Northern Irishman told IrishCanoeSlalom.com. "It was a lovely surprise to find out that I was going to carry the Olympic torch.

"To be the first deaf person in Northern Ireland to be chosen is a real privilege and I think it will be a great experience.

"I think it will be a great day when the torch comes to this country and I am sure everyone will be down there to watch so it will be a good experience.”

Sykes will carry torch in Dundonald on 3 June. More details will be available soon on Sykes' website at www.matthewsykes.co.uk/news

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the Olympic torch relay begins in Plymouth on 19 May and finishes at the Olympic Stadium on 27 July, and includes a visit to Dublin on Wednesday 6 June.

Published in Canoeing

#CANOE – An old derelict cottage on Trannish Island has been given a new lease of life, recently refurbished and launched as bothy accommodation for canoeists on the popular Lough Erne Canoe Trail in County Fermanagh.

Managed by the Share Discovery Village in Lisnaskea, this new bothy has been made possible with investment from the South West Action for Rural Development under the Rural Development Programme, Share Discovery Village and Fermanagh District Council and will cater for up to twelve canoeists with bunkhouse style sleeping space, a large living area and wood burning stove. A solar powered shower block and self composting toilet block has also been built adjacent to the refurbished cottage, providing a fantastic resource for canoeists and a wonderful addition to Fermanagh's tourism draw.

Rory Martin, Marketing Officer at Share Discovery Village, explains, "It is fantastic to see such a great facility specifically catering for canoeists here in Fermanagh. Our waterways are ideal for visiting paddlers and we are delighted to now be able to offer unique bothy accommodation that successfully compliments our natural environment."

Rory continued, "The bothy will be perfect for a wide range of canoeists both experienced and those heading out on their first paddle with a short introductory session from our instructors here at Share. Families and groups of friends will be able to get back to nature with canoe clubs and youth groups able to book exclusive use of the bothy and neighbouring campsite for larger group trips."

Developed by the Countryside Access and Activities Network (CAAN), the Lough Erne Canoe Trail is no stranger to winning innovation accolades and indeed was the first Northern Irish project to be recognised by the British Urban Regeneration Waterways Renaissance Awards in 2008.

Chris Scott, CAAN's Activity Tourism Manager explains, "Of the five official inland canoe trails in Northern Ireland, Lough Erne would be the most popular by quite some distance. With sheltered bays, narrow channels and an abundance of islands, this 50 km trail is perfect for all levels of canoeists visiting the Fermanagh Lakelands."

Chris Scott continued, "Now with comfortable accommodation and living space on a deserted island, this bothy project is set to become the feather in Lough Erne's cap and exactly what canoeists visiting this quiet corner of Northern Ireland are looking for."

With bothy accommodation on Salt Island remaining popular amongst canoeists on Strangford Lough and an old fisheries cottage currently being converted in Port Moon Bay on the Causeway Coast in County Antrim, Northern Ireland is continuing to set the standard for high quality canoeing facilities throughout Europe.

Published in Canoeing
Tagged under

#INLAND WATERWAYS - A new mobile app that guides visitors around the trails of Lough Derg has gone live, the Clare Champion reports.

More than 20 trails are included in the app, from walking to cycling, driving, cruising and canoeing.

The app - developed in partnership between Shannon Development and US firm EveryTrail - uses Google Maps and the GPS system in smartphones to pinpoint trails near the user's location.

Users can download route descriptions, images and notes, get directions to the starting point and follow the the pre-plotted course.

The Lough Derg Trails app is available for iPhone and Android devices.

The Clare Champion has more on the story HERE.

Published in Inland Waterways

#OLYMPICS - Yesterday Ireland's Olympic hopefuls celebrated recognition of their success in the 2012 round of funding.

But cuts to the budget of the Irish Sports Council (ISC) have prompted a "major" review of high performance programmes from 2013 onwards, the Irish Independent reports.

Finbarr Kirwan, director of high performance at the ISC, said: "Changes are coming, things are tight and we will have to make strategic cuts in the next two years."

The result could be fewer grant awards of lesser value for athletes, as Olympic qualification standards are set to get tougher from here on out.

The two tiers below 'podium class' - in which individuals receive awards of €20,000 and €12,000 respectively - are expected to be hardest hit in the review.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, canoeing's Eoin Rheinisch, swimmer Grainne Murphy and sailors Annalise Murphy, Peter O'Leary and David Burrows each received the top level of funding of €40,000 each, which is on a par with last year's support.

The Irish Independent has more on the story HERE.

Published in Olympics 2012

#WATERWAYSIRELAND – In its first notice to mariners of 2012 Waterways Ireland has published a list of the most important aspects of waterways regulations for boat owners. It includes the Registration of Vessels, Canal Permits, Events Held on the Waterways, Berthing in Public Harbours and many more useful reminders for the use of the waterways this coming season. Full details of the 'special notice' from the Inspector of Navigation Charles J Lawn Lt Cdr (rtd) is below:

Registration of Vessels

All vessels using the Shannon Navigation and the Erne System must be registered. Only open undecked boats with an engine of 15 horsepower or less, on the Shannon Navigation, and vessels of 10 horsepower or less, on the Erne System, are exempt.

Canal Permits

All vessels using the Grand and Royal Canals and the Barrow Navigation must have a current valid Permit displayed before being navigated or moored.

Events Held on the Waterways

All organised events taking place on the waterways must have the prior approval of Waterways Ireland. Application forms for this approval and the associated indemnity form may be had from the Inspectorate offices.

Berthing in Public Harbours

On the Shannon Navigation and the Shannon-Erne Waterway craft may berth in public harbours for five consecutive days or a total of seven days in any one month during the period 1 April to 31 October. This also applies in Clondara / Richmond Harbour on the Royal Canal and in Shannon Harbour and the Tullamore Spur Line on the Grand Canal.

On the Erne System no vessel may berth at a public mooring for more than 48 hours without a four hour intermission.

Pump Out Berths

Masters of vessels should note that it is not permitted to berth at pump out stations.

Smart Cards

Waterways Ireland smart cards are used to operate certain locks, to access the service blocks and to use the pump-outs along the navigations. Electrical Power is also available using smart cards at a limited number of public mooring locations, including Scarriff, Shannonbridge, Garrykennedy, Carrick and Ballina (Tipperary). Operating instructions are displayed in English, French and German.

Passenger Vessel Berths

Masters of vessels should not berth on passenger vessel berths where it is indicted that an arrival is imminent. Passenger vessels plying the navigations generally only occupy the berths to embark and disembark passengers and rarely remain on the berths for extended periods or overnight.

Lock Lead-in Jetties

Lead-in jetties adjacent to the upstream and downstream gates at lock chambers are solely for the purpose of craft waiting to use the lock and should not be used for long term berthing.

Vessel Wash

Vessel wash, that is, the wave generated by the passage of the boat through the water, can sometimes be large, powerful and destructive depending on the hull shape and engine power of the vessel. This wash can be detrimental to other users of the navigation when it strikes their craft or inundates the shoreline or riverbank. Masters are requested to frequently look behind and check the effect of their wash particularly when passing moored vessels, on entering harbours and approaching jetties and to be aware of people fishing or recreating on the riverbank.

Speed Restriction

A vessel or boat shall not be navigated on the Shannon Navigation at a speed in excess of 5 kph when within 200 metres of a bridge, quay, jetty or wharf, when in a harbour or canal or when passing within 100 metres of a moored vessel or boat.

Vessels navigating the Shannon-Erne Waterway should observe the general 5 kph speed limit which applies along the waterway. This is necessary in order to prevent damage to the banks caused by excessive wash from vessels.

Vessels navigating the Erne System should observe the statutory 5 kt / 6mph/10kph speed limit areas.

Bank Erosion

Narrow sections of all the navigations are particularly prone to bank erosion due to the large wash generated by some craft. Masters are requested to be vigilant and to slow down to a speed sufficient to maintain steerage when they observe the wash of their craft inundating the river banks.

Unusual Waterborne Activity

Unusual waterborne vessels may be encountered from time to time, such as, hovercraft or amphibious aircraft / seaplanes. Masters of such craft are reminded to apply the normal "Rule of the Road" when they meet conventional craft on the water and to allow extra room to manoeuvre in the interest of safety.

Sailing Activity

Mariners will encounter large numbers of sailing dinghies from late June to August in the vicinity of Lough Derg, Lough Ree and Lower Lough Erne. Vessels should proceed at slow speed and with due caution and observe the rules of navigation when passing these fleets, as many of the participants are junior sailors under training.

Rowing

Mariners should expect to meet canoes and vessels under oars on any part of the navigations, either recreating, in training or in competition but more so in the vicinity of Athlone, Carrick-on-Shannon, Coleraine, Enniskillen and Limerick. Masters are reminded to proceed at slow speed and especially to reduce their wash to a minimum when passing these craft as they can be easily upset and swamped due to their very low freeboard and always be prepared to give way in any given traffic situation.

Canoeing

Canoeing is an adventure sport and participants are strongly recommended to seek the advice of the sport's governing bodies i.e The Irish Canoe Union and the Canoe Association of Northern Ireland, before venturing onto the navigations.

Persons in charge of canoes are reminded of the inherent danger to these craft associated with operating close to weirs, sluice gates, locks and other infrastructure particularly when rivers are in flood and large volumes of water are moving through the navigations due to general flood conditions or very heavy localised precipitation e.g. turbulent and broken water, stopper waves. Shooting weirs is prohibited without prior permission of Waterways Ireland.

Portage is required at all locks, however, a heavily laden canoe may be put through a lock unmanned provided it is attended with a head and stern line.

Fast Powerboats and Personal Watercraft (Jet Skis)

Masters of Fast Powerboats (speed greater than 17kts) and Personal Watercraft (e.g.Jet Skis) are reminded of the inherent dangers associated with high speed on the water and especially in the confines of small bays and narrow sections of the navigations. Keeping a proper look-out, making early alterations to course and /or reducing speed will avoid conflict with slower vessels using the navigation.

Age Restrictions

In the Republic of Ireland you have to be at least 16 years of age to operate a PWC e.g Jetski and 12 years of age or over to operate a vessel with more than a 5 hp engine.

Prohibition on Swimming

Swimming in the navigable channel, particularly at bridges, is dangerous and is prohibited due to the risk of being run over by a vessel underway in the navigation.

Towing Waterskiers, Wakeboarders, Doughnuts etc

Masters of vessels engaged in any of these activities are reminded of the manoeuvring constraints imposed upon their vessel by the tow and of the added responsibilities that they have to the person(s) being towed. These activities should be conducted in areas which are clear of conflicting traffic. It is highly recommended that an person additional to the master be carried to act as a "look-out" to keep the tow under observation at all times.

Lifejackets and Personal Flotation Devices (PFD's)

Lifejackets and PFD's are the single most important items of personal protective equipment to be used on a vessel and should be worn especially when the vessel is being manoeuvred such as entering / departing a lock, anchoring, coming alongside or departing a jetty or quayside.

In the Republic of Ireland all persons on board any craft of less than 7m (23 ft) must wear a lifejacket or PFD while on board an open craft or on the deck of a decked craft that is not made fast to the shore. This requirement also applies to Personal Watercraft Craft and any vessel or object being towed e.g. waterskier, wakeboarder, doughnut, banana etc.

Danger Area

The attention of mariners is drawn to the Army Firing Range situated in the vicinity of buoys No's 2 and 3, on Lough Ree in the Shannon Navigation.

Shannon Navigation, Portumna Swing Bridge Tolls

No attempt should be made by Masters' of vessels to pay the bridge toll while making way through the bridge opening. Payment will only be taken by the Collector from Masters when they are secured alongside the jetties north and south of the bridge.

Shannon Navigation, Abbey River and Sarsfield Lock, Limerick

The attention of all users of this stretch of the Shannon Navigation is drawn to the published notices regarding navigation. Users are advised to contact the ESB Ardnacrusha Hydroelectric Power station before commencing their passage to ascertain how many turbines are currently running. It is advised NOT to undertake a voyage if more than one turbine is operating, due to the increased velocity of flow in the navigation, which can be dangerous. This situation may also arise when flood conditions prevail. Further, passage of Sarsfield Lock should be booked on 353-87-7972998, on the day prior to travel and it should be noted also that transit is not possible two hours either side of low water.

Lower Bann Navigation

The attention of all users is drawn to the "Users Code for the Lower Bann", in particular to that section covering "Flow in the River" outlining the dangers for users both on the banks and in the navigation associated with high flow rates when the river is in spate. Canoeists should consult and carry a copy of the "Lower Bann Canoe Trail" guide issued by the Canoe Association of Northern Ireland.

Overhead Power Lines (OHLP)

The attention of all is drawn to the dangers associated with overhead power lines in particular sailing vessels, sailing dinghys and workboats with cranes. Vigilance is required especially in the vicinity of slipways and dinghy parks, while voyage planning is a necessity in order to identify the location of overhead lines crossing the navigations. If the vessel or its equipment comes in contact with an OHLP, do NOT attempt to move the equipment or a person if either is still in contact with, or close to, the OHLP. The conductor may still be alive or re-energise automatically. Maintain a 5 m clearance, if possible, and prevent third parties from approaching you or your vessel because of the risk of arcing. Contact the Coast Guard for assistance. Fishermen are also reminded that a minimum ground distance of 30 metres should be maintained from overhead power lines when using rod and line.

Submarine Cables and Pipes

Masters of vessels are reminded not to anchor their vessels in the vicinity of submarine cables or pipes in case they foul their anchor or damage the cables or pipes

Aids to Navigation – Shannon Navigation - Recognition

Masters should consult Waterways Ireland Marine Notices to inform themselves of the roll-out of the change over from the colour black to green for starboard hand marks. Topmarks remain the same i.e square on starboard and circular on port marks. White arrows on markers indicate the safe water side of the mark.

Caution to be Used in Reliance upon Aids to Navigation

The aids to navigation depicted on the navigation guides comprise a system of fixed and floating aids to navigation with varying degrees of reliability. Therefore, prudent mariners will not rely solely on any single aid to navigation, particularly a floating aid to navigation. With respect to buoys, the buoy symbol is used to indicate the approximate position of the buoy body and the ground tackle which secures it to the lake or river bed. The approximate position is used because of the practical limitations in positioning and maintaining buoys in precise geographical locations. These limitations include, but are not limited to, prevailing atmospheric and lake/river conditions, the slope of and the material making up the lake/river bed, the fact that the buoys are moored to varying lengths of chain, and the fact that the buoy body and/or ground tackle positions are not under continuous surveillance. Due to the forces of nature, the position of the buoy body can be expected to shift inside and outside the charted symbol. Buoys and perches are also moved out of position by those mariners who use them to moor up to instead of anchoring. Further, a vessel attempting to pass close by always risks collision with a yawing buoy or with the obstruction that the buoy or beacon / perch marks.

Published in Inland Waterways

#CANOEING - The Evening Herald reports that top Irish canoeist Jenny Egan is headed to Florida for a few months of training towards a spot at the 2012 Olympics.

A sprint and marathon racer, Egan was named as The Irish Times/Irish Sport Council's Sportswoman of the Month for May 2010 in recognition of some very impressive performances.

Indeed, the Kildare native enjoyed much success in 2012, with second place in the 5000m at the World Sprint Cup in the Czech Republic and a new Irish record in the 500m at the Canoe Slalom Worlds in Hungary among her achievements.

Heading into 2012, the Salmon Leap club member will surely be shrugging off setbacks like her crash in the heat and humidity of Singapore at the Canoe Marathon Worlds last October.

The new year brings a new focus, as Egan will concentrate on the 500m and 200m K1 sprint distances for the London games, with the final qualifiers - for just 15 spots - taking place in Poland in April.

The Evening Herald has more on the story HERE.

Published in Canoeing
Page 8 of 11

Dublin Bay

Dublin Bay on the east coast of Ireland stretches over seven kilometres, from Howth Head on its northern tip to Dalkey Island in the south. It's a place most Dubliners simply take for granted, and one of the capital's least visited places. But there's more going on out there than you'd imagine.

The biggest boating centre is at Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the Bay's south shore that is home to over 1,500 pleasure craft, four waterfront yacht clubs and Ireland's largest marina.

The bay is rather shallow with many sandbanks and rocky outcrops, and was notorious in the past for shipwrecks, especially when the wind was from the east. Until modern times, many ships and their passengers were lost along the treacherous coastline from Howth to Dun Laoghaire, less than a kilometre from shore.

The Bay is a C-shaped inlet of the Irish Sea and is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and 7 km in length to its apex at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south. North Bull Island is situated in the northwest part of the bay, where one of two major inshore sandbanks lie, and features a 5 km long sandy beach, Dollymount Strand, fronting an internationally recognised wildfowl reserve. Many of the rivers of Dublin reach the Irish Sea at Dublin Bay: the River Liffey, with the River Dodder flow received less than 1 km inland, River Tolka, and various smaller rivers and streams.

Dublin Bay FAQs

There are approximately ten beaches and bathing spots around Dublin Bay: Dollymount Strand; Forty Foot Bathing Place; Half Moon bathing spot; Merrion Strand; Bull Wall; Sandycove Beach; Sandymount Strand; Seapoint; Shelley Banks; Sutton, Burrow Beach

There are slipways on the north side of Dublin Bay at Clontarf, Sutton and on the southside at Dun Laoghaire Harbour, and in Dalkey at Coliemore and Bulloch Harbours.

Dublin Bay is administered by a number of Government Departments, three local authorities and several statutory agencies. Dublin Port Company is in charge of navigation on the Bay.

Dublin Bay is approximately 70 sq kilometres or 7,000 hectares. The Bay is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and seven km in length east-west to its peak at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the southside of the Bay has an East and West Pier, each one kilometre long; this is one of the largest human-made harbours in the world. There also piers or walls at the entrance to the River Liffey at Dublin city known as the Great North and South Walls. Other harbours on the Bay include Bulloch Harbour and Coliemore Harbours both at Dalkey.

There are two marinas on Dublin Bay. Ireland's largest marina with over 800 berths is on the southern shore at Dun Laoghaire Harbour. The other is at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club on the River Liffey close to Dublin City.

Car and passenger Ferries operate from Dublin Port to the UK, Isle of Man and France. A passenger ferry operates from Dun Laoghaire Harbour to Howth as well as providing tourist voyages around the bay.

Dublin Bay has two Islands. Bull Island at Clontarf and Dalkey Island on the southern shore of the Bay.

The River Liffey flows through Dublin city and into the Bay. Its tributaries include the River Dodder, the River Poddle and the River Camac.

Dollymount, Burrow and Seapoint beaches

Approximately 1,500 boats from small dinghies to motorboats to ocean-going yachts. The vast majority, over 1,000, are moored at Dun Laoghaire Harbour which is Ireland's boating capital.

In 1981, UNESCO recognised the importance of Dublin Bay by designating North Bull Island as a Biosphere because of its rare and internationally important habitats and species of wildlife. To support sustainable development, UNESCO’s concept of a Biosphere has evolved to include not just areas of ecological value but also the areas around them and the communities that live and work within these areas. There have since been additional international and national designations, covering much of Dublin Bay, to ensure the protection of its water quality and biodiversity. To fulfil these broader management aims for the ecosystem, the Biosphere was expanded in 2015. The Biosphere now covers Dublin Bay, reflecting its significant environmental, economic, cultural and tourism importance, and extends to over 300km² to include the bay, the shore and nearby residential areas.

On the Southside at Dun Laoghaire, there is the National Yacht Club, Royal St. George Yacht Club, Royal Irish Yacht Club and Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club as well as Dublin Bay Sailing Club. In the city centre, there is Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club. On the Northside of Dublin, there is Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club and Sutton Dinghy Club. While not on Dublin Bay, Howth Yacht Club is the major north Dublin Sailing centre.

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