We were a group of 12 lads going canoeing for my stag do. My best man had had quite a difficult time booking this trip as only a month earlier a whole group of lagered up lads had got into difficulty on the Wye and required a full scale rescue operation to get them out the schtuk when the river rose! So many of the Canoe hire companies were very hesitant to take our booking.
However, Wye Canoes took on the challenge and were very clear about the rules of hiring from them (without being preachy or overtly judgemental). When we rocked up at 8.45 with a minor change to our numbers - this was no problem at all. We were quickly suited and booted with kit including dry kegs, river guides and a safety reminder sheet, given a very good safety talk and paddling lesson and then dispatched with canoes up to Kerne Bridge to start the days canoeing.
The Canoes were all Old Town Canadian boats so very robust and in very good condition. Yes, we did have to carry the canoes down to the river but PLEASE, don't go canoeing if you are not willing to carry the darn thing!!!! In an emergency you might have to.
Off we went a paddling! It was a beautiful day and we made it to the Old Ferry pub in time for lunch, beers and a rest - plus another beer or two!
At this point we were given the option to finish at Monmouth or carry on to Redbrook which was a good option for the hardy. We opted for Monmouth as our final destination and scooted the final few miles down there over some fun grade 1 and 2 rapids and generally having a hoot.
The team at Wye Canoes picked us up in good time and we returned back to Symond Yat.
Overall the experience was superb, made even better by the lovely weather (especially for September), great service from the team at Wye Canoes, especially their friendly guidance and good hearted banter. I cannot recommend them highly enough as they juggled our large party with a few others and were on the ball all the way.
Many thanks to all the Wye Canoes Team - you made my Stag Weekend very special.
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