Riding the Dee bore on an SUP – stand up paddle board
Lucy Pearce Instructor with SUP North.
The Severn bore may be more famous, but the Dee bore is much closer and was begging to be ridden on stand up paddle boards!
Simon and I had never seen a river bore apart from videos on the internet and had no idea whether the River Dee would be safe to paddle at all.
But after a stormy day on Saturday, Sunday turned out to be a beautiful, crisp sunny day and the river looked flat and calm.
We headed out early from Southport towards Chester, got on the river at the Saltney Ferry footbridge and paddled the 6km downstream to the Jubilee road bridge – we had read this is the best place to get on the wave.
We had no idea whether conditions were even right for a tidal bore and the time can vary by half an hour or so, so we hung about.
There was a surfer ready to get on and, at the last minute, two other paddle-boarders.
When we first spotted the white-water of the wave coming around the corner the adrenaline kicked in!
Usually when we surf there’s always another wave and it’s only the fading light that stops play – this was one chance only!
As it got closer we could see the considerable size and good shape of the wave, and started trying to paddle upstream.
Simon was wiped straight off the board, as you can see in the picture.
On my knees on my board, the wave passed under me which was disappointing, but I stood and paddled upstream with the following chop.
Suddenly I was on a wave, took an extra stroke and changed to a surf stance, getting a few seconds ride and an un-matchable buzz.
The incoming tide provided a great conveyor belt to get us back up the river to our starting spot.
We were stoked to have seen and paddled the bore, even if we didn’t get a mile-long ride.
The bore is caused by a high spring tide, coinciding with the right weather and river level conditions, so we’re watching the forecasts and will be back soon for another go.
Stand up paddle boarding is a relatively new watersport, and the fastest growing in the world. Using boards similar to large surf boards the rider stands and uses a long paddle.
Stand up paddle boarding or ‘SUP’ can be done on rivers, canals, lakes and the sea, on flat water and in surf. It’s great for fitness and balance, as well as being a great stress-reliever and it’s surprisingly easy for just about anyone to learn.
SUP North teach beginner SUP on Southport marine lake, Merseyside.
Lucy Pearce is an Instructor at SUP NorthSpotted something? Got a story? Send a Facebook Message | A direct message on Twitter | Email: News@Deeside.com
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