The life and lies of Callum Stone

Posts tagged “Kayaking

Black Glass

I’ve always been a white water kayaker, sea kayaking never really appealed to me that much until last summer. Then the bug bit. Although there’s certainly a journey element to white water kayaking, it’s more about getting whatever feature you’re on at the time right, and the adrenaline it gives. However with sea kayaking, it’s all of those small parts put together that make the journey so special. That’s what did it for me, when I finally discovered the pleasure and satisfaction in the journey. It’s been written and said a million and ones times in a variety of different ways by various lyrical florists, but  sometimes it needs to be said simply, and at the risk of pulling the biggest cliché in adventure media, it really is about the journey and not the destination.

With the abundance of flat water (even though there is only one true lake), sooner or later it was inevitable that I’d end up in a sea kayak getting some lake touring done in the Lake District. Being one of the most beautiful places in the UK, it makes sense to get out and about to get to see all it’s natural beauty from a view point many haven’t and won’t get to, whether it’s in the mountains, on the crags or on the water. Doing it at night though….well you don’t quite get to see the place quite as well, but I’ve lived here 3 years now, I’ve seen it quite a lot and it seemed like it’d be more of a challenge at night.

Myself and two friends from uni (Luke and Laura), headed down to Ullswater layered up with thermals and armed with head torches, glow sticks and our paddling gear. After getting kitted up, we climbed in to our kayaks and launched in to the lake, breaking it’s obsidian like surface in a landscape bathed in moonlight. On such a still night, each of our paddle strokes was silent as our kayaks carved through the smooth surface with just the slightest rushing noise as the water ran along the sides of our boats. We’d launched around about the middle of the lake and were paddling down towards Pooley Bridge, some 3 and a half miles of paddling with water for a hundred or so meters either side of us and dwarfed by the dark outlines of the surrounding hills against a clear sky. Even with the glowing lights of the various properties dotted along the lakeside, the middle was a profoundly lonely yet peaceful place to be, but a place where the company of friends is very much appreciated as opposed to being there alone.

Taking a kayak out at night really isn’t a great way to see any of the sights of the Lake District, but it really is a different way to experience them and one well worth doing, especially on such a calm night.


Chocolate, Cows and a million ways to screw you for your money.

I’m back in the UK once again! Only for about two weeks this time. My latest trip was a week kayaking in the Swiss Alps courtesy of Arthog Outdoor Education Center. Firstly, bloody hell what a lot of cows! I suppose they’ve got nothing else to do in the summer over there but farm cows though, so it’s fair enough i guess.


Street View

Wow! My permanent mark has been made upon the internet through the medium of Google Street View.  Yellow boat, red dry suit. Also there is Iain Robinson in the orange dry suit, Sean McGrath in the dark red dry suit and Miles Saunders in the grey dry suit.

North Wales 2009

Here’s a short video we made using GoPro headcams last June on Swallow Falls and Pont Cyfyng Falls, both near Betws Y Coed in North Wales.

Latex, squirting and neoprene.

Such an innocent sport with so many possible innuendos. Marvelous!

Martin Psych Up

Martin Hagan preparing to run Right Angle Falls, River Etive.

Miles Aira Beck

Miles Saunders running Aira Beck, Cumbria

Martin Right Angle

Martin Hagan running Right Angle Falls, River Etive