2024 News

Clean up Australia Day - Sun 3 Mar - 8:00am

Join “Clean-up Australia Day” on Sunday morning 3rd of March 8:00am (Low Tide at 9:00am)

Whoever is keen to get muddy this year I guarantee lots of fun for kids and adults alike. Last year we retrieved around 80kg of rubbish within 3 hours. There is still plenty to find! You can support this event on the water or on land, both is very much needed. Please bring your own stable boat if you have, but there is a limited number of stable boats available from the club fleet. Please inquire through the committee before the event for boat options. Canoes are very handy for larger items.

LCRK Special Technique Training Morning - Sun 18 Feb 2024 (Organiser: James Harrington) - Report

On Sunday the 18th of February the club held a great small groups technique training morning with 29 eager to learn LCRK club paddlers and 5 expert coaches and instructors attending. It was misty at first but then the sun broke through providing a very warm and humid morning.

First there was an off-water review of paddling technique demonstrated by James H with each of the other coaches Brett, Paul, Naomi and Tony providing some key points on technique. This was followed by breaking out into 5 separate groups that were dedicated to a single coach for the rest of the morning.

First the groups spent another 30-45 mins on land, some working on the Erg and also a brilliant home made paddling/balance simulator (see photos). Try paddling that at home while watching a full replay of last years World Canoe Marathon Championships open Mens or Womens singles!

The groups then hit the water at separate times to follow the coaches exercises and drills for the morning.

Eventually everyone returned to the shed at about 11am for a bacon and egg roll expertly bbq'd by Justin and John Thearle and providored by Alanna (thank you). There was an thoughtful buzz about as everyone tried to digest what they had learnt during the session. So much to work on. All round it was a great session.

Many thanks to the coaches/instructors for a really excellent morning. Everyones' time is valuable so your efforts are much appreciated by all. A big thank you!

LCRK 2x2 relay Sun 11 Feb 2024 (Organisers: Caroline and Wade)

This month’s theme was ‘Iconic Aussie Food’ which might be the reason for the biggest turnout in a whole year with 20 paddlers in 8 teams, including 4 doubles and 12 singles, 16 adults and 4 kids. It’s been another fun event with Chiko rolls and Aeroplane Jelly childhood memories for some. Thank you to all attendees, hope to see as many paddlers and particularly youngsters again. Spread the word and bring your friends, (grand-) kids or parents, anybody is welcome!

The Details
It was a peaceful and quiet Sunday morning until the first fleet of paddlers arrived at Lane Cove River Kayak Club around 7am on the 11th of February 2024, with enough food supply for a whole settlement. With inadequate expertise in hunting and gathering, paddlers relied on salty Chiko rolls, Twisties, Cheezels and excessive sugar as ‘the earth affords them no food at all, neither herbs, roots or any sort of grain to eat (William Dampier 1697, English Seafarer). Blind to what was in front of them they adopted literally no indigenous foods, except for the kangaroo meat in the dog food section. Anyway, a salty diet of fat and carbs provides good energy for a 2x2 relay and cardiologist Dr. Chris Quirk will manage the anticipated. But wait, I don’t want to be too negative here, so let’s investigate that further:

Australian food scientist Thomas Mayne developed a powdered chocolate malt drink with all the vitamins and minerals to address the malnutrition in Aussie kids and named it after a Greek wrestler with legendary strength. There seems to be some truth in that as team ‘Milo’ (Kim, Anne and Caroline) was paddling to the first podium position this morning with great distance to all other teams. Then there was Frank McEncroe who developed a ‘Chicken Roll’ inspired by Chinese spring rolls but not as flimsy and with no chicken. What sounds to me like a copy with nothing in it what it promises has been described as an Australian cultural icon. Is that because of the ‘Chiko Roll’ or the ‘Chiko Chick’? Well, ‘You can’t knock the roll’ as Jeff H. and Esther paddled to second place on the podium and supplied a big tray of Chiko rolls for everyone. Thanks guys!

There is one food that is ‘shrimply the best’ in Australia. It’s not processed or fried, nor preserved or sweetened. It’s the fresh Aussie Prawn. Banana, Endevour, King, Tiger or School prawn, Australia is blessed with a productive fishery of prawns. Team ‘The Prawns’ (Patrick and Jeff T.) appreciates the low fat and high protein food source which added to their muscle power this morning as they paddled to third podium position. After the prawns we have another secret weapon on the Aussie table. A quite unusual, large, oily, single-seeded berry with exceptional nutritional value. Its origin is America, but Aussies smash it up, serve it on sourdough and declare it as theirs. The high unsaturated fat content provides many benefits for gut and heart health. Our team ‘Smashed Avos’ is the living proof of all the Avo health benefits as 12 years old Eli Tyers brings his dad Scott and Wade over the finish line as 4th out of 8 teams. Wade has also been spotted eating ‘Smashed Avo on Toast’ at the café this week, secretly preparing for the event and for a long healthy life. An Avocado a day keeps Dr. Quirk away!

Then there was Team ‘Snags’. Wth…are ‘Snags’? Alright, the dictionary is my best friend, and it says: 1. an unexpected or hidden obstacle 2. a sharp, angular projection 3. to catch or tear something on a sharp projection. All of these are a thing on Lane Cove River but are not food! Then there was the slang dictionary telling me about ‘a submerged tree stump', 'an unexpected drawback', and more recently as an acronym for ‘sensitive new age guy'. Still all true for LCRK club but ain’t food! Finally at the end of the slang word list there was the word ‘Sausage’. I can only proudly say to my Aussie family: ‘You’ve got no idea what a sausage is. Definitely not yours!’ The cruel reality is that the ‘Snags’ were 7 seconds faster than the ‘Prawns’ based on time. This high energy fuel is performance enhancing during a sprint race, though I am concerned about its long-term cardio-vascular effects. Team Snags came fifth based on handicap.

Team ‘Cheezels’ (Rich Y and Craig E.) were fastest team of the day, but 6th on handicap. ‘Cheezels’ are a real Assie snack made of corn starch and rice. As a highly digestible carb source and just enough salt to prevent muscle cramps it appears to be the perfect energy source for long distance paddling. Rich made all efforts to dress appropriately for the current theme and was seen dressed in a Cheezels shirt. Thanks Rich! Love your commitment for the 2x2 relay. We accept Cheezels as an authentic Aussie food, but not sausages.

‘To paddle Arnott to paddle’, that was the question this morning for Duncan and Kyla J. who came 7th. What started as a little bakery from Scottish immigrant William Arnott has become the Australia’s biggest producer of biscuits and snacks. With currently 73 types of sweet or savory products on the market they are proof of Aussie’s hunger for high energy food. Not too sure if it is Aussie though, established by a Scottish immigrant and now owned by Campbell Soup Company of North America. Despite the fear it might become Americanized, the production of biscuits always stayed with Australia. Duncan and Kyla J. were not sole distributor of Arnott’s selection this morning, Patrick also brought Arnott’s famous TimTam for us. Kyla just recently joined the club again, maybe we will see her again. Good effort Kyla!

Last but not least there was team ‘Paddle Pops’ on their ‘Paddle Pop Adventures’ with Tim, Thomas, Dylan Binns and Liam Branley. I have to say Thomas (10 years old), Eli, Dylan and Liam (all 12 years) were my highlight of the day! I am excited to have them with us. All of them managed to paddle the full 8km distance. Dylan and Liam even paddled in their own double kayak keeping everyone honest! What a fantastic effort, you guys are amazing! Please come back for another round!

Time keeper was Justin Paine today as team Fish’n Chips. Thank you Justin for sacrificing your Sunday morning for us, much appreciated.

So here we are with nothing left but Milo, Prawns, Cheezels and ice cream. It becomes almost questionable if there is such a thing as iconic Aussie food. We learned nothing from our native culture but instead we slowly adopted a typical English cuisine and later all other food cultures in the world. There are claims for national dishes such as meat pies which were featured already around 6000 BC on ancient Egyptian tomb walls. Shepherd pies were invented by peasant housewives from Ireland and Northern England and we still argue with NZ about Pavlova. If anyone wants to expand on this? I did indeed find a truly authentic Aussie food: the ANZAC biscuit, but even that we must share with our NZ neighbours. The term ANZAC has been protected under Aussie law and can’t be used without permission. There was one exemption granted for ‘ANZAC biscuits’ as long as these biscuits remain true to the original recipe and not sold as cookies! Based on my little research today and only using grey literature it appears to me we are the ‘Stolen food’ generations and need to come up with something better, something no other country in the world would have or I suggest going bush tucker style!

LCRK 2x2 relay 21 Jan 2024: Blues, Indie Rock, Minimalism and Footrot Flats.

If you are new to this relay and read the headline you probably think that this is very strange. Yes, you are right, it is very strange. I am astonished every time I write my reports about the scenarios a bunch of Aussies and Aussiefieds choose with their team names. Whether it is ‘Wildly Weird Aussie Animals’, ‘Famous Couples in History’, or a music style, you get to know yourself and your fellow mates when you join the 2x2 and that is our goal! Thank you to our members who embrace this slightly strange 2x2 relay, thank you for being your authentic selves, for being creative and for sharing your passions with your fellow paddlers. That is the heart of the 2x2 relay. We are all unique and bring our distinct characters, capabilities, and mindsets to the relay.

This month we wanted to know what music style best describes our paddling. It was, but it wasn’t, a surprise that most of our teams rocked and some relaxed into some good old Blues. Derek S. and Justin P. teamed up as ‘Delta Blues’. Derek is a huge Blues fan. One of his fave Blues star, Tony Joe White, died recently, famous for ‘Polk Salad Annie’ which was a world-wide hit in the 60’s. Today he named his team ‘Delta Blues’ because our mangroves here in Sydney are like those in the Mississippi Delta wetlands. I had no idea! Thank you Derek for another piece of local wisdom and I am sorry to hear about your fave Blues star. Unfortunately, Derek was unable to paddle this morning and Alanna had the joy to paddle with Justin.

Jeff C. has exclusive naming rights for this team with Jeff T., so he shared his passion for soul-music which has its roots in African American Gospel music and Blues. Jeff and Jeff paddled as ‘Motown’ around the course. ‘Motown’ stands for motor town Detroit. Detroit is where most American cars and rock music artists came from. Check out Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul!

Karen H. and Esther W. rocked around the course as ‘Indie Rock’. I am a bit rocky when it comes to rock music. I imagined Native American Indians or music by Indiana Jones? ‘Indie Rock’ is actually a subgenre named after ‘inde-pendent’ rock bands. Duncan J. was on the same wavelength with his team’s name ‘The Strokes,’ an Indie Rock band. Duncan explained that ‘Strokes’ has at least two more meanings related to paddling, one being the paddling stroke and the other a brain stroke. Very creative Duncan!

Naomi and Pauline also rocked but represented the subgenre ‘Punk Rock’ that is rather raw in energy and of fast tempo. Later, Naomi explained that her paddling style is also inspired by Minimalism, a style of music with minimal notes, few words, few instruments but steady, harmonic, and pleasant in nature. That sounds just like her paddling style!

And there was Jeff H. and Rich Y. with ‘Two Slices of Heaven’. The song ‘Slice of Heaven’ is the well-known default national anthem of New Zealand, heard every day when you visit our great neighbours. It is also a comic about Wallace Footrot, a farmer who runs a sheep and catle farm called Footrot Flats. He owns a Border Collie, known as "the Dog"?! I tried hard to share Jeff’s H. and Rich’s passion but for now I just hope the cattle stays well clear of Footrot!

Here we are again, I have heard some interesting but strange things today. I am still contemplating all that I learned about rock music and NZ comics. God help me to never have an opinion on any of those passions, but to allow myself to be astonished. To be open to ‘Footrot flats’ was a hard one for a veterinarian, but I am very curious how my paddling mates arrived at such a diverse set of music and literature. There is so much depth in choosing team names that I am more and more interested to get to know everyone’s personal flavours within the scope of our 2x2 relays in 2024.