Five top tips for enjoying an unforgettable early morning summer paddle
From lazy river paddles with the family, to after work kayak sessions among the waves on the Devon coast, there are many ways you can make the most out of the extra light and warmer temperatures, with one of the best ways being out on the water before the majority have even woken up, in what is called a ‘dawnie’.
What’s a dawnie?
As the name kind of gives away, this is when canoeists and other water sports enthusiasts from kayakers to surfers will get up pre-dawn and are in the water ready for action before and during the dawn sunrise in the morning.
There’s no denying that dawn patrol canoers are starting the day off right, and when teamed with the lighter mornings that are on offer during the spring and summer months, you’ll struggle to understand why you haven’t ever done one before, if you haven’t already!
Tempted yet? Of course you are! But before you dive in head first you might want to take on board our helpful tips to help achieve that early morning sessions:
Get yourself up
If you’re not used to this, getting up might present you with the hardest challenge of them all. For some it’ll come naturally, and for others it’ll get easier the more you do it (honestly). Just remember that no matter how tempting it is to just stay under the sheets, once you’re up and at it, you’ll be over the moon that you did; there’s fun to be had!
Keep the curtains open
This might sound silly, and it might be tough to comprehend but this is a really helpful trick if you struggle to get yourself up in the mornings. Why? Because when the sun rises, you will too.
So to help you roll out of bed, leave the curtains peeled. Just think about those amazing skies you’ll be greeted with when you open your eyes in the morning!
Put the Tech away!
Probably the most alien idea in this day and age, but we say this for good reason. The bright light that is emitted from your screen’s definitely no good for helping your brain to wind down and switch off for sleep mode.
The opposite, in fact. The best thing to do is to get those devices powered down, phones and tablets especially. This way you’ll be well rested and raring to go in the morning, helping you to have a great dawn paddle.
Doing some prep for breakfast carries two incentives. This helps to make sure you don’t skip breakfast altogether – because if you do you’re going to be running on an empty tank in absolutely no time and have a shocking time on the water.
The ideal sort of thing to fix that would be a good bowl of porridge around 30-minutes before you set off. If possible, eat a banana around the same time. This will give your mind and your body the right kind of energy needed to enjoy a canoeing session at your full potential. It’s worth thinking about taking a couple of energy gels with you to put in your canoe just to keep you ‘topped up’ during the time you’re burning off all those calories first thing in the morning.
This should be applied no matter what time of the day you plan to go out on the water, but if you pack the night before, maybe use a gorilla-bucket for storing wet suits and other kit, you’ll save time and can head straight off to your destination once you’ve finished breakfast.
Don’t forget a couple of towels, one is NEVER enough!