The 2017 Immersion Research 7 Figure Dry Suit

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For 2017 season Immersion Research launched their updated 7 Figure dry suit, which in IR’s range is their highest performance dry suit. With IR comparing the suit to ‘running shuttles in a luxury sedan’ and ‘making you feel like a million bucks on the water’. I could not wait to try one out.

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I have been using the previous 7 figure and was very impressed, so was keen to see how they could improve an already great suit. Form the start of 2017 I was lucky enough to get my hands on one and have been wearing it ever since. Whether it’s for white water, freestyle or coaching, the 2017 7 figure has been my go to piece of equipment. The 3 layer 100% pcw recycled polyester has held up extremely well and keeps me dry even when used day to day for work.

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There are a few noticeable changes to the 2017 model which I could see as soon as I got it out of the packet. Firstly, is the colourway. With green being my favourite colour I naturally went for the Lime Punch/ Black Iris, which not only looks rad in photos it’s also super bright making it easy to be seen (this is great for safety and making sure I can be seen by clients). I found on the previous model the white on the arms could look dirty after time. This has been solved with the introduction of the black iris being used instead of white.

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The second change I noticed straight away was the wrist construction. Gone was the Velcro from the previous model and in was the volcano style neoprene overcuffs, not only looking smart but making the suit super easy to get on and off over the wrists.

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IR have also introduced a handy chest pocket perfect for storing my waterproof key in making sure I never leave it behind on a shuttle, which has happened on many occasions prior to this suit.

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The next substantial change I found with the suit was once I put the suit on. The cut has changed from the 2016 model. Giving the suit a closer feel. I have a medium in both and have found the 2017 model to have less bagginess under the arms for a more athletic feel, but still having adequate space for my IR Union Suit to fit underneath and not being too tight.

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I have been happy how the first 6 months have gone with the suit. It’s been hardwearing enough for long days coaching and durable enough to withstand walk ins to rivers, but still gives me the flexibility for freestyle and creaking in, while keeping me dry. Good job! Immersion Research you have made yet another great product. I will keep you posted on how the suit is doing after a year’s use.

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Catch you on the water.

Alex

 

 

 

 

10 Years with Square Rock

This year has been another great year for kayaking for me. I got the chance to travel to the Outdoor Mix Festival in France with Mathieu Dumoilin, head to Hurly, and Cardiff White Water Centre for freestyle, and to top it off, took a trip to Scotland in November. While, of course, also managing to fit in some fun runs down some of my local rivers.

I was planing on doing a year review and a video when I realised that this year has been my tenth year paddling for Squarerock. So, I thought I would go through some of my footage over the last few years and put a together short film with some photos of the fun I have had over the last ten years kayaking for the guys at Squarerock.

I would like to say a big thank you to Aaron and Rhona for the support, let’s see what the next ten years have to offer!

Bank Holiday and Flat Water Freestyle

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The sun is out this weekend and with the lack of water in the rivers I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to get out in my playboat for a bit of Flat water freestyle. So  I grab my  Jackson Kayak Rockstar and my Sandiline shorty dry cag and head out on the water.

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It been great being on the water in the sun, But I can’t wait for the white water session to start down here in the South West, and we have already started to plan this winters trips.

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See you on the water

Alex

 

France 2016 Road Trip and Outdoor Mix Festival

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For the last two years we have done trips to Italy, this year we decided to do something a little different.

OutdoorMix festival – France

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This year we decided to check out the OutdoorMix festival in France, after being invited by Mathieu Dumoulin to compete in the extreme river race. We thought it would be good to have a go at racing and enjoy the other sports going on.

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OutdoorMix is basically an extreme sports and music festival. So lots of different sports during the day such as, kayaking, slacklineing, bmxing, longboarding and more! The evenings were party time, with the music side of the festival starting at 7pm going on till 3am for the ones that love the party.

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We split the journey up by stopping off on the way at a little Whitewater course called Saint Pierre De Boeuf. Straight away we loved this place! It had two nice freestyle spots, just took a bit of practising to work out where the deep spots were.

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We had a great time at the course getting back into proper freestyle kayaking and practising some new moves.

OutdoorMix started on Friday 13th May, with the first kayaking event being a sprint race, with the top 32 competitors going forward into the boatercross. With no previous race experience, and having only paddled the section once, about 20 minutes before, it is fair to say we didn’t come in the top 32, but we still had a great time on the water as well as watching the other competitors race.

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The next day we thought we would chill out in the sun and check out some of the other sports going on in the event. We also managed to have a go at standup paddle boarding on the lake. We also thought we would try some slacklineing, as they had various lines set up on the trees, and also across the lake. As we were in board shorts already, we thought we would try one over the lake.We got wet. A lot. But it was great fun!

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That evening we thought we would hit up the party as we had been told they were meant to be really good, and they weren’t wrong! Great music and a great atmosphere.

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We liked doing some freestyle on the white water course we stopped at so much, we decided we would skip the last part of the festival and go back there. The next morning we packed up camp had a little walk around the festival again, then started the 4 hour drive.

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We got there in good time so were able to get a good few hours paddling in that day as well as a full solid day the next day. By the end of it we had both learnt some new things and refined our freestyle paddling some more.

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It was then time for the big journey home with Aaron and Rhona from Squarerock kindly letting us stop at there to continue the journey the following day.

We had a great time in France, and look forward to another trip there to explore some more of the rivers available.

Big thanks to Hatherleigh Motor Services for lending us their wicked T4 van for the trip!

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See you on the water

Pete and Alex

Freestyle Boating at Cardiff White Water Center

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So last weekend was Easter weekend and Chris and I decided to spend the holiday at the Cardiff White Water Center for a bit of freestyle kayaking. The journey up from Cornwall is a bit of a trek but well worth it as it was nice to get back into a playboat following a winter of river running and creeking .

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So it was the perfect opportunity for a bit of practice and have a laugh with some friends. The White Water Center in Cardiff is a great place to brush up on your freestyle skills with some good challenging features.

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It was a great day boating, and even the random rainstorm towards the end of the session didn’t dampen our spirits. I always have fun playing around in my Jackson Kayak Rockstar due to its versatility and its ability to go big while looping. Can’t wait to get back out in it soon!

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Alex

 

Hurly Weir on 3 Gates with the 2016 Rockstar

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With the lack of water down here in the South West it was the prefect opportunity to head up to the Thames Valley for a spot of Hurly on 3 gates with my 2016 Jackson Kayak Rockstar . It was a great day with good levels in the sun what more could you ask for. This boat is so much fun!

Alex