To take advantage of the wonderful paddling opportunities within easy reach of Inverness – as well as further afield – a programme of regular trips is arranged each year. To get an idea of what trips with ICC are like, have a look at the Club’s Facebook page.
Members take it in turn to organise these trips and a meeting of all those interested in becoming involved is held around February time in order to sort out the calendar. The aim is to arrange a camp site based trip each month during the summer; this is open to anyone meeting the minimum criteria for joining club trips and numbers will be limited only by the availability of coaches and leaders. There will normally also be a number of day trips, as well as trips that require a higher level of skill and experience and/or are limited in numbers due to wild camping. It is Club policy to restrict the numbers on wild camping trips to a maximum of 8 people in order to mitigate the impact on the environment.
Trips are graded as per the definitions used by Doug Cooper & George Reid in their Scottish Sea Kayaking guide Fifty Great Sea Kayak Voyages:
Grade A – single day trips from 6 – 20 km in distance. Relatively easy landings with escape routes available. Offering relative shelter from extreme conditions and little affected by ocean swell. Some tidal movement may be found, but easy to predict with no tidal races or overfalls.
Grade B – Mainly day trips from 10 – 30 km in distance. Some awkward landings and sections of coastline with no escape routes should be expected. Tidal movement, tidal races, overfalls, crossings, ocean swell and surf may be found on these trips. They will also be exposed to the weather and associated conditions.
Grade C – single and multi-day trips from 25 – 93 km in distance. These trips will have difficult landings and will have no escape routes for the majority of the trip. Fast tidal movement, tidal races, overfalls, extended crossings, ocean swell and surf will be found on all these trips. They will be very exposed to the weather and conditions, therefore requiring detailed planning. With this considered they will all require good conditions for the trip to be viable.
Once the programme has been finalised, details of individual trips – including the date when bookings open – will be added to the events calendar. All trips are bookable here, using the Club’s WebCollect Membership Platform. The complete calendar, as a Word document, including organisers’ email addresses, is circulated to the members who are sea paddlers in Spring (make sure you are on the “sea list” in WebCollect) . As wild camping trips in particular tend to fill up very quickly, do take note of the date and time on which bookings open!
The year’s calendar is still being added to events: please keep an eye on the Club’s Google Calendar – this gives a view of all planned future events, including those which aren’t confirmed. Also don’t forget to check your members’ emails!