Gladiator Paddle-Board Review

ABOUT THE AUTHOR My name is Andy Bartlett and I have been paddle boarding since I stepped onto a board for the first time on the Hudson River, New York in 2015. Since then, amongst many hours of recreational paddling I have also completed longer distance journeys. In 2016 I became the first person to Stand up Paddle 3000km along the length of the Danube River. 2017 saw me complete the River Thames from Lechlade to Putney in 4.5 days and then in 2018 I returned to Lechlade once again but this time to undertake the same journey on a tandem board. Together with my paddle partner Spike Reid we completed that paddle in just 59 hours. In July 2020, together with my good friend Tam, we set off to p

Sup the River Wye - Kit List

BOARD AND BAGS Gladiator Pro 12'6" x 32" Inflatable Board Gladiator Cardon Nylon Pro Paddle Gladiator Pro pump 4" Flexible river fin 90 & 70 Ltr Auqapac Lightweight Waterproof Duffle Bag (the ‘Upano’ range) Aquapac PackDivider Ultra-Lightweight Drysack - Various Sizes CAMPING Tent - Nature Hike Cloud UP 2 Ultralight Two Man Tent (for 2 very small people or one full sized adult with bags) Sleeping Mat - Decathlon Trek 700 Inflatable mattress Sleeping Bag - Alpkit Pipedream Inflatable Pillow - Exped Air Pillow XL Sleeping Bag Liner - Mountain Warehouse Silk Mummy Sleeping Bag Liner COOKING & HYDRATION I carried 3 litres of water with me in 2 bottles (both securely clipped to my board) along wi

SUP the River Wye - Day 5

LOCATION: Symonds Yat (West) to Brockweir DISTANCE: 16.7 Miles PADDLING TIME: 5 Hours 16 Minutes ​ START: River Wye Camping FINISH: Brockweir Bridge ​ STRAVA ROUTE: ​ With the private landing area closed until 09:00 and us keen to move on as soon as we could we snuck down some steps; loaded our boards whilst standing in the river and were paddling by 07:30. Almost immediately after passing the Saracens Head on the left bank you come to Symonds Yat Rapids. The river splits in two by a small island with the man made (or man enhanced) rapids on the left and an all but dry trickle to the right. Having heard various reports on their strength, ferocity

SUP the River Wye - Day 4

LOCATION: Ross-on-Wye to Symonds Yat (West) DISTANCE: 14.5 Miles PADDLING TIME: 4 Hours 15 Minutes ​ START: Ross-on-Wye Rowing Club FINISH: River Wye Camping ​ STRAVA ROUTE: ​ Ross was bathed in glorious blue skies and bright sunshine as we slipped away from the rowing dock on to a once again empty river. Following the main A road for the first few miles our paths soon diverged as the river headed first towards the ruins of Goodrich Castle before entering the Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Slowly the surroundings change from flat fields with far off hills to near vertical bare rock faces and steep sided forest covered hills. From t

SUP the River Wye - Day 3

LOCATION: Hoarwithy to Ross-on-Wye DISTANCE: 11.6 Miles PADDLING TIME: 3 Hours 30 Minutes ​ START: Tresseck Campsite FINISH: Ross-on-Wye Rowing Club STRAVA ROUTE: ​ With a shorter day ahead we departed later than previous days for what would be just a third of the distance from the day before. The river continued south before turning North East into a long loop before turning again and heading south into Ross-on-Wye. The only two things of real note on this short stretch were the old railway that crosses the river in two places. The bridges have long since been removed but their supporting pillars and columns still stand tall as an eerie reminder

SUP the River Wye - Day 2

LOCATION: Byford to Hoarwithy DISTANCE: 29.5 Miles PADDLING TIME: 9 Hours ​ START: Byecross Farm Campsite FINISH: Tresseck Campsite STRAVA ROUTE: ​ Day 2 was the longest day of the trip both in distance and time spent on the water paddling. A short distance after setting off the main channel dries up leaving the flat rock bed of the river exposed on the right side. All water is funnelled through a narrow channel to the left where the flow picks up speed and will do its best to deposit you into the branches of the over hanging trees. Choose a good line, a few hard paddle strokes and its easy enough to navigate but if in any doubt stick to your knee

SUP the Wye - Day 1

LOCATION: Glasbury to Byford. DISTANCE: 24.2 Miles PADDLING TIME: 7 Hours, 10 Minutes ​ START: River Wye Campsite, Glasbury FINISH: Byecross Farm Campsite STRAVA ROUTE: ​ ​ The River Wye Campsite and bunk house is a lovely place to spend the night before starting your journey. They offer a range of activities and can help plan your journey as well as supply equipment if you're not bringing your own. ​ A near perfect stone bank allows for a simple put in and start point for the journey. If you're not staying at the River Wye campsite there is public access to the river behind the public toilets on the North side of the Bridge. There are two campsit