Archive for June, 2011


Val Sesia

Levels in the Sesia valley were low but we stayed a few days in ¬†Campertogno and managed a run on Alpine. Alpine sprint was fantastic and the low levels enabled us to run Mollia- one of the more challenging rapids in the locale. The bottom hole kicked two peoples butt’s and was definitely a painful encounter by all accounts…but a good, steep rapid to run.


Photo by Andy: Mr Westaway on Mollia


Photo by Andy: Dave C.  and Westgarth on Mollia.


Photo: Entering Campertogno

A beautiful run down this classic stretch of river, followed by lunch at the campsite. We paddled from the campsite down on the Middle Sesia, portaging the mandatory portage at river level. Some fun rapids along the way followed by ice-cream at the get out. Does life get any better?


Photo by Andy: Me on a little drop.


Photo: Corkage was wearing the best t-shirt; never a truer word written!


Italia- Ciao Bella!

The northern Italian alps are a popular destination for kayakers from all over europe. One valley in particular, namely Val Sesia, offers some of best localised boating for this time of year. I stayed at Campertongno for the first time last year and experienced the prime white water goods and so when the Exeter Boys asked me along with them this year, how could I refuse?


Photo: Ewart starring as Timmy Mallet…

We caught the eurotunnel and set off on our mammoth journey taking in France, Belgium, Luxemberg, Germany, Switerland and finally Italy. We were forced to rest for a while in Switzerland when we’d run out of petrol and the filling station was closed. Some of us contorted ourselves into weird shapes to sleep for a few hours in a gear filled car, while others set up bivve-camp on the grass at the petrol station. And there was no way we were budging from there without our morning espresso.


Photo: Our petrol station camp.

Caffeine and croissant fuelled we travelled around the stunning Lac Maggiore and through the small villages to Campertogno in Val Sesia. Setting up camp and eating lunch in a mahussive downpour, we discussed what we should run first. With all the rivers low on water, we decided on the customary Sorba slides. Gronda was far too low to run and Sorba had enough to run the slides; thankfully. Ewart was a bit crippled after the long car journey with his dodgy back and charged himself with the title of official photographer.


Photo by Ewart: Andy on slide number 1


Photo by Ewart: Me going off slide number 2


Photo by Ewart: Booftastic dude! Dan on slide number 3

After 4 or 5 laps it was back to the campsite to partake in a game called “drink like a pirate”…bring on the flaggon of cheap red wine!!!


Photo: Oh no me heartys the flaggon be empty…crack open the next…arrrrrr.


Photo: Wise Corkage say….”raise your hand when you tell a funny to ensure laughter!”


Ptoto by Andy: Everybody loves Ewart…need I say more :-)