The Challenge requires you to be in your Canoe / Kayak clothing for more than 6 hours in each day.
Not only is this much longer than any usual canoe session but in also has other considerations.
Primarily that during this length of time British weather can go through “four seasons” in a day, particularly in April when the weather can be very changeable.
So you need to have with you clothing which can cope with:-
Cold Weather – I have known it snow on 14th April!
Wet Weather – ever heard of “April Showers” – they can be very wet!
A Heat Wave – yes it can get up to about 25°C in April – I suffered sunstroke one Easter.
Certainly it is highly likely that the mornings will start quite cold, frost is frequent at that time of year. Hopefully by the afternoon it will be pleasantly warm “T Shirt” weather.
Water temperature is always going to be cold.
You will obviously need to have clothing which will cope with getting wet, even if you don’t fall in, there will be enough splashing from paddling to thoroughly dampen anything you are wearing.
Most of the River Bank and many of the places you will be embarking or disembarking are deep mud! So leave your " Sunday best " clothing at home.
All clothing must be comfortable to wear after 6+ hours of activity!
Wet Suit (could be long or short legs / sleeves – preferably choice of either)
Wind / Splash proof Jacket with plenty of arm movement!
Helmet – will only be compulsory to wear for rapid below Iron Bridge
Warm – Thermal or Wool
Wide brim all round and neck cord (they will get blown off!) preferably waterproof.
Baseball Cap style
You need ALL of these!
Canoeing (water sports) boots / shoes.
Must be secure on feet else will be lost in River Bank Mud!
Old pair of trainers.
Gloves – with good grip when wet
Sunglasses – or “reactor light” lenses in prescription glasses.
Make sure you have a retaining cord with safety pin. It will be very expensive and highly inconvenient to loose them if you capsize!
At least 3 of following:
i.e. one set on, one set in dry bag in canoe, one set at base drying!
Shorts / Swimming Trunks
You may also wish to use “thermal” versions of Shirts / Shorts / or Long Johns
Also required to be carried in Dry bag in Canoe
Towel – Bath Sized! - “micro fibre” versions are ideal.
Fleece or Hoody or Sweat Shirt
Jog bottom or Activity Trousers
All of above will be required by you with addition of a sports / activity underwear.
It is very important that ALLyour items of clothing have a name label which must be indelible and waterproof!
We could have some 400 items of clothing drying on washing lines overnight.