The Bristol Avon is more that just a river. In fact most people don’t get to see just how amazing it really is! One way to explore this stunning river is by Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP). This is a clean, quiet and tranquil way to travel along the many miles of ever changing river.
I started paddling down the river on my SUP three or four years ago and I was overwhelmed with the amount of wildlife and stunning scenery before me. It’s not uncommon to see Kingfishers darting up and down the river, while Herons swoop from perch to perch, Woodpeckers tapping on trees and songbirds signing loud from every tree. I have recently spotted Otters too which is a great sign of the good health of the river.
On a summers’ day you can be surrounded by the dancing Mayfly or a variety of Dragonflies and Damselflies, while fish leap from the river. This might all sound very dramatic, but a paddle on the river can be pretty amazing and good for the soul.
If you pick an early morning or evening when the light levels soften and glow, the river once again comes alive and it can be a photographers dream. The wind often drops during the evening to leave a glassy surface that reflects the surrounding scenery and if you get a sunset the river lights up like its on fire!
What I like about using my SUP on the Avon is the freedom it gives me explore it. Not only are you able to move about, looking in to rushes, up tributaries or under bridges, but the vision you get from a SUP is unlike anything else. Traveling along the river so quietly also allows you to get close to wildlife that would normally be long gone.
You never know what you might see on the river and how you might see it which is a good enough reason to go back again and again.