Open DofE
Gold Canoeing

Canoeing Expeditions

Our Open Expeditions by Canoe are a unique way of doing your DofE Expedition on some of the UK’s picturesque rivers. Participants do not need to have any previous canoeing experience as our comprehensive Training Programme will take you from the raw beginner to a competent paddler. However, all participants must be able to competently swim at least 50 metres for safety reasons.

Training & Practice Expedition (5 days)

Day 1: Basic Paddle Skills Training covering all aspects of the DofE Paddles Skills syllabus followed by an overnight camp.

Day 2: Consolidation of Paddle Skills on an accompanied journey with overnight camp.

Days 3 - 5: 3-day, 2-night Practice Expedition with an end of expedition briefing with your Expedition Supervisor.

Qualifying Expedition (5 or 6 days)

Day 1: Travel & arrival day. Additional paddle skills training relating to the local environment. Kit checks, assessor briefing and overnight camp.

Days 2 - 5: 4-day, 3-night Qualifying Expedition.

Caledonian Canal expeditions are 6 days, with the first day reserved solely for travel to the area. All other training and pre-expedition checks then take place on Day 2 with the Qualifying Expedition taking place over the next 4 days. Overnight bunkhouse accommodation before the expedition is included.

Also included as standard:

  • Online Factsheets including kit lists, menu ideas and other key information.

  • Supervision and training by our team of qualified Canoe Expedition Leaders.

  • Camp site fees, river licences and launch fees.

  • Group Kit – tents, stoves, fuel, maps, map cases, group first aid kit.

  • Paddle Kit – canoes, paddles, buoyancy aids, helmets, throwlines, paddlesport dry bag set.

  • Public Liability Insurance of £10million, AALA Licence and DofE AAP Licence.

  • Expedition On-Call Support – dedicated “home contact” support during expeditions.

COVID-19 Procedures

All our expeditions will comply with COVID-19 safe procedures including:

  • A COVID-19 Screening Questionnaire will be sent to all attendees (participants and leaders) prior to attending.

  • Restricting the numbers on each expedition to comply with current Government social distancing rules.

  • All participants must bring their own hand sanitiser and face coverings. There will also be a supply of these available on the expedition.

  • All surfaces of canoes and paddles will be sterilised before and after use.

  • Paddles and buoyancy aids issued to participants will remain in their own property during the expedition and must not be left unattended.

  • Participants will be issued with their own tent, stove and fuel for the duration of the expedition. Participants will not share group equipment or food.

  • Campsites will be disinfecting and cleaning communal areas (toilets and washing-up areas) regularly and all users must follow the campsite rules.

  • Expedition dates set to avoid Fridays and Saturdays which are likely to be busier than other days.

  • Travel - Participants should travel to/from the expedition areas within their household or social bubble. If using public transport, participants must comply with Government rules and wear face masks.

Full details will be sent to participants on confirmation of dates, along with the Joining Instructions.

2021 Caledonian Canal Open Gold Canoeing Expedition

Qualifying Expedition July/August 2021

What a way to gain your Gold Award! This is a truly memorable experience and a fantastic opportunity to make your Gold Award that extra bit special. Starting under the shadow of Ben Nevis, you will canoe along the 95km of the Caledonian Canal, including the length of Loch Ness (watch out for Nessie!) to finish at Inverness.

Price: £690.00 including VAT per person

Package includes Training & Practice Expedition in the Midlands in March/April 2021 plus Qualifying Expedition in July/August 2021. Exact dates will be confirmed in once the Department of Education have confirmed 2021 Exam dates. Please contact us for further information.

DofE Expedition Information

All our DofE training is based on the DofE's Common Training Framework at each level. Canoeing Training also incorporates the Paddle Skills Training.

All our expeditions are subject to the DofE's 20 Expedition Conditions.

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