An incredible experience not to be missed

Wednesday morning dawned, promising to be a glorious day on the Bay. I grabbed my swimming gear and sun protection and headed out the door to mingle as an extra, with the people involved in the filming for the program on Channel 7 “The Great South East”.

My friend Caroline was already sitting under the awning enjoying her coffee made by Kelly from the Move It, Move It Coffee Van. I joined Caroline and Kelly promptly asked me what I would like to drink. Service was excellent and Kelly, warm, friendly and hospitable.

Lance and Kelly Judd work together as an awesome team. Kelly manages the coffee and snacks van, while Lance hires out Stand Up Paddle Boards (SUPS) and kayaks. He gives lessons to anyone who is interested in learning how to paddle or kayak and the cost is very affordable and incredibly reasonable.

Lance’s magnetic personality and quick wit is charming and immediately puts you at ease.

The Channel 7 crew arrived ahead of the people demonstrating their skills on the boards and kayaks. Unfortunately an accident had occurred on the highway, blocking the road and delaying the paddlers and Lance looked to “the extra’s” for assistance. I know my capabilities and paddle boarding is not one of them.

Understanding the dire situation I offered to get in the kayak … knowing next to nothing and with little prior experience. Mmmm many years ago I had canoed in a double canoe, on the Zambezi River and seem to remember my partner was doing the paddling while I kept my eyes constantly and cautiously watching the wildlife splashing a bit to close for comfort. This had to be easier and far less dangerous. I was given a quick lesson, slipped into the life jacket, climbed into the Kayak and off I went. Matty, who owns the Segways, and I were instructed to stick together and paddle out to the yacht, which was sitting out on the water. Lance and Kelly’s grandchildren were on the paddle boards and ready to begin. As I slipped the oar into the water I immediately fell into a comfortable and peaceful mindset. It was sheer bliss paddling on the calm bay water with the warm sun on my back and the crystal blue ocean ahead. A seaplane was also buzzing around looking for a place to land on the water. It couldn’t get any better, or so I thought.

Thankfully, the paddlers arrived and before long the water was dotted with skilled paddlers of different ages manoeuvring their boards in and around each other. I was thoroughly enjoying myself and happily paddling on the outer edges until we were called and told we could come back in.

I climbed out the kayak and was greeted with a congratulatory High Five by Lance.

Before I knew it I had accepted a quick flight in the Sea Plane over Victoria Point, Coochiemudlo and Horseshoe Bay and off I went. The varied blue colors of the water from the air and the stillness of the day took my breath away. Absolutely stunning is a word to describe what I witnessed from the air. All too quickly the flight was over and I was back on the water.

Kelly prepared the most delicious Mango Frappe and service with a smile is the most apt description of what you get. My morning was beyond expectations – what an unforgettable experience right here in Raby Bay!!

We all need to de-stress and unwind and I would recommend a few hours at Raby Bay Beach in the capable hands of Lance & Kelly. An incredible experience not to be missed. I have booked my Paddle Boarding lesson for Friday and I can’t wait to be back giving it my best shot.

Rhona

 

The fun time I had learning to paddle board

Friday began the same glorious way as Wednesday. I was very excited at the prospect of learning to paddle board and I looked forward to my time on the water.

Caroline picked me up and the 2 of us arrived before 8am and before the heat of the day set in. It felt like it was going to be a scorcher. Lance was expecting us and once again with his humour and quick wit he immediately put us at ease. We signed all the necessary paperwork and the challenge began. I say challenge as I knew it would be challenging for Lance as the Instructor and myself as the student. Direction has never been a strong point and getting my brain to understand which direction the Paddle goes as it controls and manoeuvres the board is the challenge I faced. Caroline was in the kayak and off she went like a pro. She had never been in one before and no-one would have believed it as she took to it like a duck to water, paddling confidently and happily in the Bay.

My lesson began on the beach on my knees in the sand. Lance was succinct and easy to understand. His explanations made so much sense as he patiently showed me how to hold the paddle, how to control the movements and what to do to get off my knees and stand up. Practice done and I was ready. Off I went into the water and on my knees on the board, paddling from side to side. Lance giving instructions and never to far away if I needed help. The next step was turning and with much effort and paddling I mastered the turns. Now to stand!

The key was paddling fast, putting down the oar, standing as I had been taught and then picking up the oar and paddling like crazy. I managed to follow all the instructions and once I was up I discovered my legs were like jelly as they wobbled on the board. My arms were beginning to ache as I paddled from side to side. I felt exhausted and I had only just really begun. Lance sensed my struggle and called for a rest time. We paddled to the shore and I hopped off for what I believed was a well earned rest. After a few stretches, water and more sun screen I was ready. This time it felt so much easier and in no time I was up and I could Paddle! Great cheering from Lance – he really knows how to boost your confidence. What an awesome experience standing up paddling around the Bay on another stunning day. When I was ready to call it a day in I came, pleased as punch with my successful 1st lesson.

I would encourage anyone thinking of learning to paddle board – just do it!

Call Lance and arrange a lesson and enjoy the experience and all it has to offer. Once I am competent I will be able to paddle with Kelly to the Lighthouse and experience a bit more of the sea beyond the Raby Bay stone walls. I believe the Dolphins are often around escorting the paddlers and there is a resident turtle who pops his head up to say “g’day”.

Thank you Lance and Kelly for your expertise, friendliness and the fun time I had with Bay Island Paddleboards and Kayaks Company. Looking forward to the next time.

Rhona