In the words of Ned Stark, “Winter is coming”. And as the season starts to wind down, we here at Colwyn Bay Watersports thought we’d share with you what we’ve been up to this summer and let you know about what we have coming up for the remainder of the year.
The summer was kicked off in style this year with students from Ysgol John Bright joining us for an action packed enrichment week. This consisted of sailing, windsurfing, kayaking, catamaran sailing, raft-building and plenty of games both on and off the water. A week of basking in the sunshine, combined with water-sports, made it a thoroughly enjoyable week for all.
The first weekend of July saw Colwyn Bay Watersports host its first major sailing event, with various classes of boats travelling to Porth Eirias to take part in the Club Youth Racing Circuit organised by RYA Cymru Wales. It was great to see so many young people take to the water, from national squad sailors to those new to the art of sailing.
July also saw the next generation of instructors put through their paces, with both a start windsurf instructor course and a dinghy instructor course taking place. As always, it was great to have head Welsh windsurf coach, Ali Yates, back in the bay to teach both courses. A huge range of conditions made things challenging, but thoroughly prepared everybody for the beginnings of their careers as water-sports instructors.
This summer saw the launch of our newest activity, Beach Club. Targeted at 8 – 14 year olds, and running every weekday in the summer holidays, no two days were ever the same. As Beach Club was guaranteed to run every day if booked, we had kids come play in the Bay from as little as half a day to as long as two weeks. With so much kit to be played with, each day was filled with action. Activities ranged from sumo wrestling to windsurfing, from stand up paddle-boarding to powerboat rides and from blasting around in catamarans to raft building competitions.
As we are sure you’re all aware, the migrant crisis has become of increasing concern in Britain over recent weeks. We saw the effects of this in the Bay too – with them arriving as the sea temperature rose. We are of course talking about the plague of red coloured jellyfish that we experienced this season. Fortunately, they did not arrive until the end of the summer and their stings were unable to penetrate through our centre wetsuits, leaving the majority of us able to enter the water unscathed. If you are unlucky enough to suffer from a sting disregard anything you may have heard about vinegar or urine! Latest advice is to scrape off the jelly and man up – you are allowed pain killers if you can’t cope.
This season we have been running many more windsurfing and sailing taster sessions and it was great to see so many new people trying out the sports that we love. We have also had various groups in participating on the water. It was particularly thrilling for us to welcome students from Cardinal Wiseman School in Birmingham to our centre. For some of the students it was their first experience being in the sea! It’s always great seeing people try out water-sports for the first time; but it was particularly wonderful to see the fascination and enthusiasm that some of the students had with the environment that we so often take for granted.
It was also fantastic for us to get involved with sea swimming and the first few events in the Gog Triathlon Open Water Swim Series, as well as working with USwim based from Manchester. We look forward to seeing more events from both in the Bay next year.
Lastly, but certainly not least, we have been very busy with hire of kayaks, windsurf kit and dinghies this summer. This has only be made possible with the help of our large team of volunteers who were an enormous help in keeping day to day operations running smoothly at the centre. However, as the season comes to an end, so does the availability of some of our volunteers. So from this point on if you are wishing to hire in the week, please give us a call the day before to see if this is possible.
As things quieten down for the winter, we will not be opening on a Monday or Tuesday. However, there are still plenty of great opportunities to get out onto the water before the year is up. So if you are interested in learning a new sport, or progressing with a current one, there are still spaces available on our adult courses shown below:
|Level 1 Sailing||19th-20th September|
|Level 3 Sailing||26th-27th September|
|Level 1 Sailing||10th-11th October|
|Intermediate Non-Planing Windsurfing||24th-25th October|
|Level 2 Sailing||7th-8th November|
Once again, we would like to take this opportunity to thank everybody that has helped to make this season such an incredible one for us. In particular we would like to show our appreciation to all of our volunteers and instructors who we could not have managed without.