The annual Isle of Man Sea Kayak Symposium ran during the last week in September, and this year attracted over 70 kayakers from the United States, Sweden, Estonia, Finland, Spain, and the UK, as well as some of the growing number of local kayakers from the Island. The symposium is hosted by the adventure sports centre Adventurous Experiences and sponsored by the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company.
Keirron Tastagh, director of Adventurous Experiences and lead coach said “The island is now firmly recognised as a world class location for sea kayaking. This year we had many international kayakers visiting us for the first time, the feedback from them on what the island has to offer has been incredible.”
Keirron also said “The symposium is only possible thanks to the sponsorship from the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company and the support from Sea Kayaking UK”.
The event allows visiting kayakers to train in the wide range of conditions experienced on the island under the supervision of renowned sea kayak coaches, supported by the local coaching team at Adventurous Experiences. A circumnavigation of the Calf of Man and trip out to Chicken rock lighthouse, training in the tidal race at the Calf Sound and surfing in Gansey bay being various highlights of this year’s event.
Launched in 2003 to promote the Isle of Man as a sea kayaking destination, the annual Isle of Man Sea Kayak Symposium & International Training Weekend in late is now a sister event to the Anglesey Sea Kayak Symposium in May which is organised by Nigel Dennis. Nigel, a worldwide sea kayaking explorer held a talk at the Claremont Hotel, Douglas during the weekend on the development of modern sea kayaking and some of the incredible expeditions he has been part of including the first ever circumnavigation of Great Britain in 1980, rounding Cape Horn in 1992 and several crossings from Gibraltar to Morocco.
Mark Woodward, Chief Executive of the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company said “this is a strong event which showcases the variety of sea conditions that are available around the island. The Steam Packet Company are especially pleased to be involved in something which helps extend the tourist season and which brings money in to the island’s economy during the quieter shoulder period.”