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Introduction to Open Canoeing



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Excellence Award 2015

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What our clients say...

"Fantastic course aimed at the level of the group. Selection of river grades suitable for each day as the skills of the group improved. Equipment provided perfect for the level of course. I felt like I improved as a paddler and over the course of the week and gained a confidence in running harder graded water."

"Good structure, very positive, progressive, variety, insight to what coming (rapid sets). Confidence boosting.  Great river variety, sufficient support and challenge."

"Good delivery and speed. Pre-course info was perfect – knew exactly what, where and when. Technically there was a lot of useful info personal paddling wise."


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Introduction to White Water Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP)

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Cumbria has some of the best white water rivers in the UK. It is the perfect place to start your white water sup paddling obsession.

If you love stand up paddling on canals and lakes our introduction to white water will add a new amazing environment for you to enjoy.

Be ready to be amazed at the stability of our white water boards as you cruise down the white water rapids on the rivers of Cumbria.

You could enjoy the beauty of the river Eden as you paddle through its sandstone gorges on its bouncy wave train rapids or perhaps the gentle meanders of the middle Derwent as you paddle towards Bassenthwaite.

White water paddleboarding river Eden

All courses start with an introduction to your equipment using a range of high quality boards. After a fitting session we will take you on some easy water and start to coach you in the skills required for white water paddling. From there we will move you on at your own pace setting challenges that will suit you.

Course content

On the course we will look at

  • Board design
  • Use of leashes and releasable waist belts
  • Using positive blade pressure to create stability
  • Reading white water
  • Using river features
  • Simple rescue techniques
  • Planning river trips and gauging river levels
  • SUP Cumbria

SUP Cumbria


If necessary, we can provide you with a white water paddleboard and paddle.

You will need:
Clothing to stay warm. Drysuits are often the best option for these days. Alternatively good quality steamer wetsuits work well and provide a bit of impact protection. Drysuits are available to hire (£30 for 2 days).

You should bring:

  • White water appropriate buoyancy aid.
  • White water helmet with plenty of side protection.
  • Sturdy footwear that protects the sole of your feet and your ankles from impact on the river bed or sharp rocks.
  • Knee, shin and elbow pads are also used sometimes.
  • Drybag to carry your lunch in.

We have a range of buoyancy aids, drybags and helmets that can be borrowed if requested in advance.


There are a range of rivers that could be used to tailor this course to meet your individual needs. The most likely options include:

  • Middle Derwent near Keswick.
  • Various sections of the river Eden between Penrith and Carlisle.

We will agree the exact venue closer to the time, taking into account the water levels at the time. The most likely venues are within 30 minutes of Penrith so basing yourself close to there would limit travel time. On occasion we might have to travel an hour from Penrith to get the right water levels.

Course Dates

Dates to be arranged.

Course Fee: £220

We can deliver all or part of this course to a group or individuals at the following rates:

One person £250 per day
Two people £300 per day
Three people £350 per day
Four or five people £400 per day

If required, we can provide you with a white water paddleboard and paddle. Drysuits are available to hire.

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Paddleboarding on the Eden
Paddleboarding on the Eden

Additional Info

Wild River recommends that all customers take out personal insurance for the activity.

We can tailor a course to your specific needs.

If you cannot find the course you want or the date you need then please contact us and we will try to meet your needs.

River gradings

Wild River Course Dates



Paddlesport courses in the Lake District