A statement from the Team
We set out our aim to paddle around Ireland, allowing ourselves a month away from family and business commitments to complete it. Weather permitting, we would challenge the record time in a standard sea kayak. We wanted to raise substantial funds for the RNLI in the process.
Our ethos was:
- have adequate training and knowledge to make informed decisions en-route
- carry food and shelter for the expected duration
This ethos of real risk management forms the backbone of our Adventure Sports Centre on the Isle of Man.
We have forged links with the RNLI on the national water safety forum through Coasteering and the establishment of the National Coasteering Charter, as well as regular local fund raising efforts. We hold the RNLI’s strategy of incident prevention being the long-term solution in high regard, and have adopted this approach in adventure sports on the Isle of Man. This parallel includes regular training, experience and can do attitude to manage incidents.
It is incidents that require external assistance which attract media focus, and where the vital lifeboats and their dedicated crews come into play. This is where funds are especially required.
Our aim to paddle to and around Ireland, was part of our overall strategy to blend these factors and promote positive risk management, be good ambassadors of the RNLI and inspire others to reach their potential.
As we journeyed along both the East and South coastline of Ireland, making real decisions which involved real risk, we both realised that the sea kayaking trip we had committed to, given the relentless winds we had encountered during this time, allowed for limited options. The impact on our bodies was relentless; recovery time minimal. The expedition in this format was unlikely to achieve our aim, with the current weather and related sea conditions (May has been one of the coldest and windiest on record), and our associated physical state.
In short, responsible risk management for us was to take a break from paddling.
Our main aim going forward is to increase our options. We aim to increase support and continue to raise funds for the RNLI, carrying its message of real risk management on our journey. We kayaked along the East and South coastline over 2 weeks; we aim to explore more of the the West and North coastline over the forthcoming years…
We are both indebted to our sponsors and really appreciative of the warm Irish hospitality, the boundless support of the RNLI and having plenty of reflection time ourselves.
Catch you on the water soon
Keirron & George