We left Cardiff at 0530am on a saturday morning for a uneventful drive to Stanstead for a flight to Trieste in Italy near the Slovenian border. Mid afternoon we met Simon in the Gene 17 wagon and had a fun and relaxing drive to Trnovo in the sunshine which we were told to make the most of as it was raining in Slovenia!!
A quick walk across the road was the pub, local store and Alpin Action Kajak Store and just down passed the fields behind these was the start of the Trnovo 1 Slalom site which we walked down to kill some time in the sun it was looking as good as I remembered from many years ago and with higher flow :)
A quick beer or two before food and we were pleasantly surprised a large Lasko was only €2.00 (Tuborg same price!)
Day 1- We paddled the Classic section of the Soča from Bokka down to Trnovo Slalom site, the emphasis of the day was to brush off the cobwebs and improve techniques such as use of flairs, boofing, using the flow and how to trim the boat to gain the most out of the hull, finishing off with a quick blast down the slalom course saw me grinning from ear to ear!
Day 2- We went upstream above the 3rd Canyon and ran the class 4 section running a few rapids twice and improved the moves from the previous day, and introducing some extra things to play with every rock was used to help with positioning with either a simple boof through to flairing and rock spins and also recapped on leadership and ways to help calculate running and guiding class 4 rapids with piers.
After lunch we walked back up and launched above the 3rd Canyon and had another run down and then worked on some other techniques with Tom Parker, and continued down to the Prijon Shop which had some fun and tight S turns to make rocks to launch off and some wave trains which were just too tempting to launch a wave wheel on (with success in the Mamba 8.6 man I love this boat!) A quick tour of the Prijon shop and some free local schnapps (more like rocket fuel) from the Lovely Anna's followed by a night another night out for great food courtesy of Simon
PM- After lunch we headed to the Koritnica which is a tributary of the Soča that comes in just above Bovec at Kajak Kamp Tony
I was observing and still on skills which saw some awesome flairs and rock spins and then 1/2 way down took over the lead on some fun class 4 and then some read fun to the confluence on the Soča and then read and fun down to the Prijon and some more down river play in big boats.
Slalom Course which was higher than the first day and making some fun lines throughout.
PM After Lunch we went for some swimming fun above the slalom course where I managed to use my knee and shin as a brake when jumping into the flow (remember to be careful where you leap!!!) after a quick yelp and swim across the other side of the river to See Tom the leg was throbbing badly so left it in the cold water to reduce the swelling, I must say I was using Palms Atom cag and Combi bibs and was as dry as my Stikene no seepage even swimming on the high flow of the Soča (highly recommended) after a swim back and some more rope work including use of harnesses vectors and live bait we walked back to our apartment (well more of a hobble for me!) where I found the rock had broken the skin deeply but not marked the Combi Bibs (thumbs up!) That evening we had another nice night being fed by Simon
I would defiantly recommend Simon Westgarth's courses through Gene 17 awesome paddle and coach and alsoTom Parker who was the second assessor of the week both gave us lots of hints and tips that I will be passing on through my courses to everyone. We were fed & watered (had to buy our own beer but not bank breaking and very nice) and put up in a nice apartment for a week close to the river