70 miles on River Spey...in kayaks

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A GROUP of young people will kayak 70 miles down the River Spey in Scotland to raise funds for a children’s cancer charity.

Gemma Longbottom, 24, of Shelf, Warren Tolley, 22, Matt Hodgson, 19, and Rachel Smith, 17, all of Halifax, will be a among a 10-strong West Yorkshire team attempting the challenge.

All are members of the Bradford Scout Network and if successful expect to receive the Queen Scout Award from the adventure.

Miss Longbottom said the challenge involved kayaking for four days and spending five nights camping – and everything had to be packed into their boats.

“We are all adventurous and excited but are having to be really strict on what we pack,” she said.

Boil-in-the-bag food and pasta will help sustain them on the route from the Cairngorms National Park through to the North Sea.

The group have been training at Mixenden Reservoir and had a 10-mile return trip on the Calder and Hebble Navigation from Copley to Brighouse.

Under the direction of instructor Mike Smith, of Halifax, all have now qualified for a two-star kayaking certificate and are ready for the fast-moving waters on the River Spey.

He will be keeping checks on the group, which will be split into two teams of five, with the first setting off this weekend and the rest late next week.

They hope to raise £2,000 for CLIC Sargent which gives support to families with children suffering from cancer. More information is available at http://cobwebqsa.blogspot.com/