Sunday, 30 June 2013

Canoeing on the Nene

Today I went on a family day out, dog in tow, brother at Glastonbury, to a little village the other side of Oundle called Waddenhoe. My dad's new obsession is canoeing and so we thought we'd have a paddle on the river Nene and a picnic on the river bank. For our base we used a lovely pub garden which ran right down to the river, called the King's Head. On a day like today, where we are blessed with blue skies and sunshine it really is a magical spot.

I had a wonderful time with my dad out on the water and it's a shame I couldn't take my camera out with me, but I fear that could have ended in disaster. It's lovely to see a familiar landscape from a different angle. The river was teeming with life, from fish and birds, to plants and insects. We saw swans with their cygnets, a moorhen with its chick, ducks and ducklings and even a heron. The edges of the river were lined with tall reeds tangled with some form of water lilly with beautiful yellow flowers which protruded through the surface of the water, while underneath bloomed a forrest of freshwater weed. Among many other insects, there were amazing blue dragon flies with opaque black wings that danced across the water, the motion of which couldn't be caught on camera.

I think this may well be my favourite hobby that my dad has adopted so far, sailing and mountain biking were less successful, while skiing remains a constant. I would really recommend taking to the water, along the Nene there are various places to hire canoes, and lots of pretty spots to stop at along the way. I've decided that in the future I rather fancy having a house that backs on to a river, or taking a holiday on a narrow boat.

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