Give the Gift of Landcare this Christmas! Landcare’s expansion worldwide has been accelerated by our small projects fund, and your small donations can make a BIG impact on international communities into the future. Looking for a different way to give? We welcome donations here: alci.com.au/christmas-giving/... See MoreSee Less
So ...our team The Bounce Back Team No 129 has completed their adventure and survived to tell the tale! Congratulations. You can still pledge your support for their 106 kms at alci.com.au/massive-murray-paddle-2018/
And here is Mick's (and Elena's) story - amazing effort!
We realised after a practice beforehand that the goal we should set for ourselves was one leg per day, and we achieved that. This was in spite of a couple of problems on the way. On the fourth day of the race, it was bitterly cold, raining with a strong headwind. We had considered two legs that day, but at the end of the first leg I got hypothermia and we couldn't go on. I was okay as long as we kept paddling, but the minute I got out of the canoe at the first checkpoint, my body started shaking. They actually called an ambulance, but by the time the ambulance got there, it had pretty well subsided. The ambos measured my body temperature at 35.9 degC when they first got there, but about ten minutes later it was up to 36.5 and they were happy that I was okay. It is the first time I have ever had that. There were a few other cases of hypothermia as well and apparently one guy got pneumonia, so they probably should have cancelled the marathon for that day.
The fifth day we had strong headwinds. It was coming up against the current and forming sizable waves, in some spots up to about 30 centimetres. It was cold too, but there was no rain and we were dressed more warmly than we had been the day before, so we had no more problems.
We actually did pretty well that day. One of the organisers was standing at a spot marking the 7 kilometre point (i.e., the point from which there were seven kilometres to go). We did that last 7 kilometres in 42 minutes, which works out to a speed of 9 kilometres per hour. For inexperienced paddlers against a headwind, that is pretty good and Elena and I are both very happy with it.
We did only one leg a day for a total of 106 kilometres. But many of the paddlers only did that much, either because they were in relay teams or because that is the way they planned it from the beginning. What we did was considered enough to be given a finishers award.
Tim Roadley of the Yarrawonga-Mulwala Amateur Canoe Club, from whom we had borrowed the kayak, told me that our achievement was greater than what the comparison with other paddlers suggests, because we were using a much slower kayak than they were. When we first went to see him before the marathon he tried us out in the faster kayaks but realised we were too inexperienced and would be tipping over all the time, so he switched to a slower but more stable kayak!
Thank you to Pam ‘Dwyer from Barooga—who provided a homestay for Elena and helped us in countless ways.
Anyway, Elena and I are both very happy with the whole experience, and in fact would be happy to go into it again in the future--particularly now that we know all the things we need to do to prepare properly.
I think that this could be an effective way to raise funds for Landcare. The best would be to get more people involved and organize relay teams. That way, we could be more sure of covering the whole distance. Both preparations and advertising need to begin much earlier, though. ... See MoreSee Less
The Yarram Yarram landcare Network was fortunate to host a visitor from Uganda last week. Dr Prossy Isubikalu paid a visit to the Landcare offices in Yarram before departing for a tour in Staceys Bridge. Dr Isubikalu is a Lecturer at Makerere University in the Ugandan capital, Kampala and has a particular interest in developing stronger Landcare connections in her home country. Pictured is Rob Youl Australian Landcare International, Prossy Isubikalu and Albert River Landcare Group member David MacAuley. ... See MoreSee Less
They are paddling to their ability and have mastered 25 km in Day 1, 25 kms in Day 2 and will tackle at least 20km tomorrow. Tremendous effort and it seems many teams have relay groups so very few actually do the full 404 kms themselves...Maybe next year we can put together a team of 8 to fly the ALI flag and raise some funds.... See MoreSee Less