Sussex Kayaking River Trip – Lewes to Hamsey Weir

Heading over to Lewes, I couldn’t help but notice the perfect weather for our Kayak adventure. As Rebecca and I arrived at Phoenix Causeway West Car Park, I noticed the brightly coloured kayaks lined up all ready for us. You couldn’t miss it – it was such a practical meeting point as there were lots of parking spaces and it was right by the entrance to the river.

As we walked over to the group, we were greeted by Steven, our friendly guide, who quickly showed us to our kayaking gear. After a quick briefing, the group headed to the River Ouse with our kayaks. Within the group, there were 8 participants. For Rebecca and I, this was great, as it was a sociable tour and we love meeting new people.

Before setting off, we were all designated the right sized kayaks and given help adjusting our foot rest. It was also much appreciated when Steven gave us a few tips on the basic use of our paddles. By this point, Rebecca and I were extremely excited to begin exploring the natural beauty of Lewes from the river. The wonderful weather only got us more enthusiastic about the trip.

Once the whole group was on the river, we set off on our adventure. One of my favourite parts of this experience has to be the views while traveling from Lewes to Hamsey, through the scenic countryside surroundings. During the two and half hour tour, we kayaked past historical churches, farm animals and beautiful swans – one even led the tour for about 10 minutes as we went through a narrow part of the river!

During our midway stop, we pulled our kayaks onto the river bank, where we stretched our legs and enjoyed a truly beautiful landscape. It looked as though there was nothing for miles. Before we got back into our Kayaks, our wonderful instructor informed us of a small drop in the river that we could go through, or avoid. Everyone in the group was very keen to try something different and challenge themselves, and this was another fun part of the trip – I recommend going through it!

As the Lewes to Hamsey kayak experience is a round trip, I loved the fact the instructor knew a different route back to Lewes. This route was slightly more challenging, but more intriguing as it was a smaller river with more character to it. We went past a large farm house, under old brick bridges and through the over grown plants that nearly take over the river. This made the whole experience feel like a real adventure!

As we emerged back onto the main river, the instructor got the group to come together for a short break and group chat. After this, we began our route back on the River Ouse, to Lewes. The instructor gave us a few last development tips as our confidence had grown from the start – this was really appreciated by the group. Once we could see the end in sight, our instructor went ahead to make sure our exit from the river was safe.

Our experience was extremely enjoyable, and I would definitely join another kayak adventure in the future. This tour is a perfect beginners’ course, for all people and abilities – decide yourself whether you’d like a slow or fast pace!

A massive thank you to The Kayak Coach for having us and for a really pleasant experience!

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