If you feel that a sedate commute along cycle-paths is too tame, you could always add some adventure by taking a canoe with you.
Through Velo Vintage, Alistair and Sebastian Cope organize really good fun days out where cyclists come from all over the area and dress up in Victorian costume to “cycle, converse, take tea and dress with style.” Steampunk on two wheels (without the steam).
On this occasion Alistair has dreamt up a fantastic charity fundraising adventure: cycling and paddling a beautiful ‘grown’ canoe from Edinburgh to Exmouth.
The canoe was built by husband and wife partnership Simon and Ann Cooper of Flaxland who have come up with a beautiful and practical “home grown” boat made from woven flax and sealed with natural resin.
The canoe is fitted with an aluminium cross-strut acting as an axle, and the wheels simply pop on to the outside of the boat so it can be towed along using a device crafted from old bike frames – thus recycling cycle parts.
And as if that wasn’t enough, some canoeists set up a tightrope between the lock gates and proceeded to treat us all to a display of lunatic imbalance as they tried to walk from one side to the other across a taut luggage strap.
Sadly, nobody succeeded in the desperate deed, but it was fun watching them try.
The docks were absolutely heaving with activity last night. There were dinghies, single and four-woman sculls, canoes, surf-shoe kayaks seal-launching off the dockside, K1 racing kayakers out training and of course the Exe-Calibre Dragon-boat out on a practice paddle.
Exeter: so much more than a load of old buildings!