Well as the summer continues to unfold in front of our eyes down here at the Boathouse, we’ve been very busy over the last few weeks welcoming a number of groups and businesses down to make use of our facilities here at Canoe2 for team building and corporate days.
One of the great things for us about our new space down here at Rushden Lakes, is that visitors not only have access to the lake for events in our Katakanus and other crafts out on the water; but we also have a dedicated meeting room space available as well.
This has been used for all manner of events and meetings over the last year or so - from sit-down training sessions to networking events and all sorts of other uses. Its a really flexible space - not least down to the fact that it comes stocked with brand new kitchen and display / AV facilities to boot.
This week, the Boathouse played home to the fine folk of Northampton Saints who joined us for the day. While we didn’t see any of the players this time, there was a whole array of backroom and support staff down at the Lakes for a day for a team building day.
You can find some photos of the teams afternoon with us over on our Facebook page right now keep your eyes peeled on the social channels as well for a little video clip coming your way as well.
Until then - if you are looking for a space for your next meeting or event, or you’re looking for a fun option for your next team building or corporate away day - be sure to give us a call and discuss your requirements with us.
We tend to see clouds as reflections on the river, backed by blue skies on sunny days, as we gently paddle our way downstream.
Apparently there’s something called the Internet, that lives in the cloud, that joins up all our computers! Really? Where are the cables? And the plug sockets? Surely fluffy white rain clouds shouldn’t mix with electricity?
When we first heard this down at The Boathouse, our first reaction was panic. But then we became REALLY EXCITED, and by harnessing the power of the clouds, the river, and a laptop, we were able to create ONLINE BOOKING for Canoe2 trips of 2-hours to a full day, whenever it suits you! AND, Multi-Day bookings will follow soon!
Rest assured you can still call us to book if you prefer, we have phones too you know! I know, incredible, right?
And this week is a great time to try your first online booking - use our brand new discount code “TWENTY” and get a full 20% off. Offer ends this coming Monday 18th.
And remember that the 20% is also valid on all our multi-day Bundled Short Breaks, whether you choose 2 or 3 days comfy camping en-route in our Tipi, Yurt, or Bell Tents, or perhaps your preference might be a B&B or our lovely Shepherd’s Hut?
For these longer trips you’ll need to phone to book, and that’s great ‘cos we’ll get to say hi, and answer any queries you may have. We’re on 01933 522 223
Well, the swans have been put away to hibernate for the winter and we have drawn the curtain on another incredible summer out on the water…
This year was our second summer here in our Boathouse at Rushden Lakes, and its been our busiest year yet with so many new folks joining us out on the lake. We’ve been blessed with some wonderful weather this year, and that seems to have inspired even more people to venture in and pick up a paddle for the first time.
Its also been a year of new developments for us here at Canoe2 as we launched a number of new projects and products as well. The Shepherds Hut at Barnwell for one, has been a very popular addition to our range of comfy camping and overnight accommodation options and its also been really exciting to see lots of folks getting their official canoeing qualifications out on the lake as well through our new line of tuition and classes which launched this year.
All told its been another incredibly exciting year!
All of that came to a great climax on Sunday as we hosted the first annual Splash and Dash event with Spurgeons here at Rushden Lakes. It was wonderful so see so many teams competing and raising money for a wonderful cause. The team from Anytime Fitness in Rushden wound up victorious in the final, beating out some stiff competition from the guys at Beat Route Radio who were kind enough to join us on commentating and musical duties throughout the day as well.
While the season for hire may be over, there are still plenty of great reasons to come in and see at the Boathouse shop. Our sale on Canoes and Kayaks continue with some amazing deals on brand new craft, as well as a selection of ex-hire canoes (info & pricing can be found here) and we also have loads of great products for canoeing / outdoors that might come in perfect for a certain large end of year festival event which, frankly its too early to even type the name of yet!
In the meantime, thank you again to everyone who has joined us and hit the water this year - we can’t wait to welcome you back next season!
Alas, with a heavy heart - even the most optimistic of souls (which when you are as beholden to the weather as we are you have to be!) we have to acknowledge that summer is finally drawing to a close…
With that in mind we thought we would add a note here with details of our “Last calls” for paddles for this season…
Our Multi-Day Comfy Camping Trips continue along the River Nene until September 29th (and with it continues our 22% off special offer) so there is still chance to get out along the Nene yet. Check out our trip chooser for details of all the options available to you!
Our “paddle-out-and-back” trips leaving Rushden Lakes will only be available to 29th Sept as well. This trip will also be available on the same weekend dates as lake hire, as well as most weekdays as well.
Dont forget of course that September 30th is the activity of this year on the lake with the Splash n Dash event taking place in association with Spurgeons. This weekend is the LAST OPPORTUNITY to get your team registered for this event. You can find full details and the form to register your team over on the website here.
All other river trips to end by Saturday 13th October.
So lets enjoy the last few days of summer while we still can!
Guest Blog: Sue from Spurgeons on the Splash & Dash…
Well as the deadline for signups to this years Splash & Dash event in aid of Spurgeons draws near, today on the blog, we have a guest blog from Sue Dennis to share a little more about the event and how it will support the great work that Spurgeons do across the country…
“As a national children’s charity that supports the most vulnerable children, it’s my job to continuously look for new opportunities and ways to raise vital funds to support the life changing projects that we deliver…
Although we’re a national charity, many people don’t realise we’re based in Northamptonshire, so it’s really important that we utilise all opportunities to raise awareness of Spurgeons as a charity. The more people know who we are and what we do will help us raise our profile and ultimately support more children and families. I’m extremely proud to work for such an amazing charity. In the last year, Spurgeons has delivered over 50 projects and reached out to over 81,000 vulnerable children, parents and carers. Our services ensure vulnerable children and families can access the help they need for a better future.
We aim to help them better cope with their difficulties and provide them with resources and support to find long lasting solutions to challenging problems. We’ve helped people like Jamie… Jamie is a 9-year-old boy who was a young carer with two disabled parents. Jamie managed to attend school, but he was dealing with pressures far above his ability to cope, that left him withdrawn and quiet. No one knew just how much Jamie was suffering with the burden of supporting his parents, and what turned out to be his parent’s verbal abuse of him. As we started to talk to Jamie, we discovered that the day before our meeting, he had tried to kill himself in the school playground. His teacher had found Jamie trying to strangle himself with a rope. Jamie believed his life wasn’t worth living. But we believe he has a hopeful future.
A chance to make history and make a difference
Last year Northamptonshire saw the development of a new multi-million-pound shopping centre, Rushden Lakes. An amazing complex that offers a combination of fashion, food and nature situated beside a scenic lake which is operated by Canoe2 who offer a range of activities on the water. The new complex is only five minutes away from our charity’s Central Office in Rushden. This got me thinking, an opportunity to make history is just around the corner… Since the new complex opened, we’ve built great relationships with both Rushden Lakes and Canoe2. It seemed the right time to take our relationship to the next level.
The next level being the first charity challenge on the lake and the first ever event of its kind for Spurgeons. My vision was to make the event a great success that it would then become an annual event for Spurgeons for many years to come: long after I retire! Thankfully, the wonderful management teams at Rushden Lakes and Canoe2 willingly agreed to my idea. We’ve been working in collaboration for several months to bring together the first ever charity Katakanu challenge on Rushden Lakes. We’re really excited about the opportunities this will bring - not just to the charity – by using the day to build community spirit, have fun and lots of laughs.
My vision is now a reality, the event is now live and we’re in the process of recruiting teams to help us make Spurgeons Splash and Dash a great day for all. We’re looking to recruit a variety of teams to sign up and join us from friends/family, work colleagues/business to sports clubs. We’ve made the process really simple, all we’re asking is that teams: • have a team of six – a team name is also required plus a captain (you need to be 12 and over to enter) • complete our online registration form • agree to our terms and conditions • then away you go, start fundraising for a great cause I’ve been asked a few times about previous experience and the simple answer is no but do bring your ‘A game’ as there will be a trophy for the winning team! Could you be crowned our first ever Splash and Dash champions?! For all information about the event, links to register and links to set up your very own Everyday Hero fundraising page click on the link below.
Go to www.spurgeons.org/splashanddash to sign up now. Family fun on the boardwalks We understand that getting onto the water isn’t for everyone. We would still encourage you to come along and enjoy the day. The teams will certainly need cheering on, plus we have a number of fun activities for children to enjoy. We will also have a selection of local business stalls selling unique items on the Board Walk. Our friends over at local radio station Beat-Route radio will be joining us, helping to commentate on the races and providing music to add what is set to be a great day for all.
We hope to see you all there on Sunday 30th September from 10am – come along and help us raise vital funds to support vulnerable children across England.
Splash & Dash - 1/2 Price Training Sessions Available
We are very excited right now to be just a few weeks away from the first Splash & Dash event taking place down here at Rushden Lakes!
As you might recall, this event is a fantastic day long Katakanu racing event, pitting teams from across the region against each for day of fun out on the water here at Rushden Lakes - all raising funds for the fantastic folks at Spurgeons.
Well as the big day draws near, we are pleased to be able to offer a number of half price training sessions for teams signed up to participate in the event. We understand that people are naturally a little competitive and maybe want to spend an hour out on the lake with their new crew getting to grips with the craft. Like the scene in Cool Runnings where they all sit in the bath together - except our Katakanus offer substantially more room!
The half price training sessions are available on the following upcoming dates:
Sat / Sun 22nd / 23rd September
Sat 29th September
For all dates, teams are required to check in at the Boathouse by 9.45am and will be allowed onto the water from 10.00 to 11.00am. THERE IS VERY LIMITED SPACES, SO MUST PRE-BOOK and pay in advance.
However - we are offering these sessions at a special rate that allows you One hour at half price (i.e. £15 per katakanu). Unfortunately no half hour rate is available. Pop in and see us at the Boathouse at Rushden Lakes or give us a call on 01933 522223 to book while spaces are still available!
As you might remember from last week, we are currently very excited to be running our September sale on Canoes & Kayaks, down at the Boathouse at Rushden Lakes…
Well this morning, we are very pleased to say that we have just made the pot even sweeter still, with the addition of a number of ex-demo and pre-paddled crafts as we’ll including;
Ex-demo “Islander Fiesta Kayak” at £275
Ex-hire “Old Town Discovery 158 Canoe” - just added at £475
All of the boats in our sale are perfect first-time purchases for the novice paddler, whilst also being great upgrades/replacements for those that have some experience in other craft. With the exception of the couple of crafts listed above, all of the other items in the sale are brand new.
The sale has some amazing deals from the likes of Hou Canoes and Wilderness and at the risk of sounding like a QVC video - some of these crafts genuinely won’t be around on the racks for long.
Worried about hitting the water for the first time?!
Don’t be! Even if you do end up a little wet the first time - we have a great range of buoyancy aids, paddles, portage trolleys, and more, we can help make sure you’re completely ready for your future adventures on the water. Indeed come the spring, we will even be launching our series of tuition classes out on the water to fine tune your paddle technique!
The gang here at Canoe2 are very excited to announce that OUR SEPTEMBER CANOE & KAYAK SALE IS NOW ON!
Sorry… we shouted there… we’re all just very excited that’s all, as we have some fabulous craft from HOU, DAGGER, ISLANDER, AND WILDERNESS SYSTEMS all available! All of the craft that are available are perfect first-time purchases for the novice paddler, whilst also being great upgrades/replacements for those that have some experience in other craft.
Plus - don’t forget, our boathouse shop has a great range of buoyancy aids, paddles, portage trolleys all available to help make sure you’re completely ready for your future adventures on the water.
TAKE ADVANTAGE WHILE YOU STILL CAN!
These special prices are only available through September and will be the last chance for a while to snag a bargain like this, so be sure to visit the Canoe Shop, or pop in and see us at the Boathouse at Rushden Lakes!
For now though - we are open all week and looking forward to being back out on the water at Rushden Lakes next weekend - when the Heritage Family Fun Day takes place on Sunday 16th!
We are very proud to call the Nene Valley our home - from our early days at Ditchford Lock, through to today where we find ourself nestled at the heart of the new Rushden Lakes development.
We were very pleased then to be asked to be a part of this years Nene Valley Festival which kicks off on September 15th 2018!
In addition to hosting part of the Heritage Family Fun Day down at the Boathouse on September 16th (which will be taking over the whole Rushden Lakes site for the day) we are also pleased to be offering a special offer for the duration of the festival.
The offer is available on our 2 hour river paddle - a perfect introduction to the river if you haven’t been out before - and is available for the duration of the Nene Valley Festival - from the kickoff on September 15th, through to the conclusion on September 23rd. You can find all the details and the pull out voucher on the back cover of this years festival program which is all over the county right now in visitor centres, libraries and dozens of other locations.
In the meantime you can find all the event listings and other info on this years festival over at the festival website - nenevalley.net/festival
Well as September paddles into view we are still hard at work down at the Boathouse making the end of Summer as busy and productive as we can!
Next week as the schools go back, we will be winding up our midweek service out here on the lake at Rushden Lakes but never fear because there are plenty of opportunities still to get involved - including (although by no means limited to…)
- Weekend Paddles out at the Lakes on our fleet of canoes, katakanus and swan pedalos. The weekend hire will continue until the end of September so still lots of opportunity to get out for a splash before the season ends for this year. Don’t forget - you don’t need to book to get out on the water, just bring a grown up per craft!
- Our river trips continue for a few more weeks yet too, and with one eye on a very sunny looking forecast for the month ahead, we have decided to extend our 22% off special offer on group bookings of six or more people. So if you’ve been meaning to get out onto the River Nene for a short break all summer - now’s the time to take the plunge while you can!
- On the subject of ‘out on the river’ we are now down to one remaining date for our bat spotting paddles with our friends at the Wildlife Trust. The last paddle will take place next week - Friday September 6th - and is the last chance to get Bat spotting from the river for this year. Give us a call on 01933 522223 to book while you still can.
- Finally don’t forget that September also see’s the Splash and Dash event taking place out on the water here at Rushden Lakes to raise funds for the team at Spurgeons. Find all the info you need on that event here, and tune into BBC Radio Northampton on Saturday Breakfast (Sep 1st) at about 820 to hear more about this really exciting event
A quick update on our opening for the bank holiday weekend…
Due to a poor weather forecast for today (Sunday Aug 26th) of heavy rain and high winds, we are closed for hire on the lake down here Rushden Lakes. The Boathouse shop is open all day however, and you can pop in and see the team all day to find out about our trips and browse a selection of canoeing and outdoors items.
The better news is that the weather for Bank Holiday Monday itself is much better and so for anyone enjoying a bonus day off work, we are open all day for hire. Remember there is no booking required to get out on the water down here, you just need a grown up per craft for any of our canoes, kayaks our swan pedalos.
In the meantime - dont forget there is also still time to sign up for next months charity fundraising event with Spurgoens. Full details on the Splash and Dash can be found here. And there is still just a few days left to take advantage of our 22% off offer on group overnight bookings as well. Find all the detail you need on that offer here.
Well - like Danny and Sandy in the bittersweet opening to Grease - we know that at some point Summer has got to come to an end… But for now we’re steadfastly ignoring that nugget of chronological fact and concentrating on enjoying every last drop of the summer holidays down on the water!
This year has been our busiest summer yet and theres still loads of time to get out on the water either on the river or on the lake here at Rushden Lakes.
There is still just over a week left to take advantage of our fantastic 22% off offer for group bookings looking to take a multi-night paddle with us. With the weather set fair for a number of weeks to come, there are still plenty of opportunities to get involved while you can!
In the meantime - on the subject of getting out on the water - we were very happy to welcome the gang from Beat Route Radio down to the Boathouse this week to record an interview for the station. We sent Founder Ian out on the water with his namesake Ian from the Beat Route breakfast show who were brave enough to record an interview out on the water in one of our Katakanus!
The interview aired this morning (Tuesday) and from what we understand you can listen again on TuneIn Radio and a number of other online streaming platforms.
Until next time folks - be sure to keep an eye on our social media feeds where we will be sure to tell you more, tell you more…
We’ve posted before about out partnership with the Wildlife Trust here in Northamptonshire and the wonderful work that they do locally…
Its a really fun partnership and one that brings us lots of fun challenges - like when we worked with the guys to install the new Tern feeder installation here at Rushden Lakes.
This month, we are really excited to be hosting a number of our Bat spotting paddles with the guys along the Nene. These evening’s are always a really popular series and have continued to grow in popularity over the last few years.
The fleet of Canoes will depart Canoe2’s base at Rushden Lakes. After a peaceful early evening paddle along the River Nene you will be met back at Rushden Lakes by your Wildlife Trust experts just as the bats are starting to come out. You’ll then be taken on a guided walk of the Nature Reserve as dusk settles. One of our favourite parts of the Everyone will have the opportunity to use a bat detector which picks up the ultrasonic frequencies used by bats as they hunt. The event usually finishes by around 9.45pm back the lakes.
At present, we have a number of paddles scheduled for August and September for the following dates:
The courses have been a great success so far and its been really exciting watching so many new paddlers (including - a few of our own members of staff!) get out on the water and get their certifications for the first time.
As it stands at the moment we have two final key dates available for our “British Canoeing Certified 1 and 2-star courses”:
1-Star – August 23rd (Thursday – one-day course at £100). Just 5 places available
2-Star – September 22nd & 23rd (weekend – two-day course at £160). Only 2 places left.
These last couple of places on these courses will fill up fast so be sure to book today to avoid disappointment. These will be the last dates for 2018 that we will be running so why not end the summer warm in the glow that comes with a sense of personal satisfaction and a new found mastery of a canoe!
Nick Offerman once said “Build your own Canoe” and while that might not be absolutely practical for everyone - its certainly never been easier to learn how to get to grips with one!
Give us a call on 01933 522 223 or pop in and see us at the Boathouse at Rushden Lakes to find out more and book your space!
I’ve heard people say that you need to make hay while the sun shines and while we’re not particularly the farming type - we’ve definitely getting the most out of the sunny weather in terms of getting loads of new friends out on the water!
The summer has been really busy down here at the Boathouse so far with lots of river trips departing each week, and the lake hire being open every single day of the summer holidays. The swans have never been so busy! Indeed we’ve been having such a great time we decided to extend the good times a little further and open up an amazing special offer for the month of August. You can find out all the details you need over here. This awesome 22% off offer is valid on group bookings of 6 or more people so check it out now while you still can!
In the meantime we are also very excited to be gearing up for the upcoming Spurgeons event out on the lake here at Rushden Lakes. Its shaping up to be a very popular event already and we can’t wait to welcome some new faces down to the lake.
As we get close to the event, we will be opening up the lake early for some half price training sessions for teams that might want to get out onto the water for a little practise ahead of the event itself. Keep your eyes on our Facebook or Twitter page for more information.
And finally - a big thanks to everyone who came down to the Boathouse over the weekend to support the excellent event that Macmillan were running in the Boathouse meeting space. The event was a really big success and supports some really important work that the team do locally, so thank you again to everyone who made it down!
Until next time folks - we’ll see you down on the boardwalk! (Bring ice-cream!)
Well its been a wonderful summer holiday so far down on the lake with the swans, canoes and kayakanus getting a serious workout most of the days!
Indeed it seems like the sunshine is definitely inspiring a lot of people out onto the water generally as we have been very busy out on the river as well and even seeing plenty of brand new canoes and kayaks leaving the shop strapped to the top of customers cars!
For the next month all of our 2-day Comfy Camping Bundles have been reduced down to Just £115 per person (when booked with a min 6 people) Meanwhile, our 3-day Comfy Camping Bundles 5 & 6 have all been reduced down to just £193 per person (min 6 people). These offers are perfect for families and large groups looking to get out for an adventure today so start co-ordinating your diaries and give us a call!
For more info, and to book just phone - 01933 522 223 or pop in and see us on the Boardwalk down here at Rushden Lakes. Obviously it goes without saying that this offer Can not be used in conjunction with family discounts, nor any other offer…
You might remember that a few weeks back we posted on the blog about the Wagamama team here at Rushden Lakes and the great time they had out on the lake here at Rushden Lakes.
Well this week we were very happy to welcome the team from NPS Shoes in Wellingborough down to the boathouse for a wonderfully sunny team-building day out on the water. They always say that talking about yourself is really hard so with that in mind - we thought we would let Debbie from NPS share their experiences for us!
“We all had such an amazingly fun time and your colleagues that were out on the lake with us were fantastic!!!
I think it is safe to admit that a few of us were a little apprehensive about the event but as soon as we got in the katakanus the laughter just flowed. We enjoyed the races and games and learned that many of our colleagues are a little on the competitive side! We all got thoroughly soaked and judging by some of the video clips taken, the screams of joy could be heard all around the complex!!! I don’t think I have laughed that much in a long time. Brilliant!! It is the perfect event for staff teams.
We have all commented that we would like to do it again, both as a company and also with our families and friends and I, for one, will definitely be recommending the activity to everyone I know.”
We are all very happy to hear that the team had such a great time out on the water and we can’t wait to see the guys back down again!
In the meantime - to talk to us about our options for corporate days and team building activities out on the water - get in touch with us today! Give us a call on 01933 522223 or pop in and see us at the Boathouse Shop at Rushden Lakes!
Splash and Dash challenge to raise funds for local Children’s Charity
Over 300 adventurous people will be taking part in a fundraising challenge at Rushden Lakes, to raise vital funds for the local based Spurgeons Children’s Charity.
Splash and Dash is the first ever challenge event to take place at the newly opened shopping, restaurant and wildlife complex. 48 teams of six will be racing in KataKanu’s across the lakes. The winners will take home the coveted challenge cup.
Taking place on Sunday 30 September, the event is run by Spurgeons – the charity that supports vulnerable children and families across England - in partnership with Canoe2 out on the water at Rushden Lakes.
The races will kick off at 10am and there will be a real party family fun atmosphere with children’s activities, stalls and music. So far 8 teams have signed up, with a number of the Lake’s stores taking part – including: White Stuff and River Island.
Sue Dennis, Events and Community Fundraising Manager, Spurgeons Children’s Charity said ‘We are excited to be working with Rushden Lakes and Canoe2 on this first ever ‘Splash and Dash for Spurgeons’. Not only is it the first event of its kind locally but it enables us to bring a fun filled day for local people and businesses while raising funds to support children and families who need our help. I hope that as many companies and groups locally will want to support the children we work with and to be a part of our Splash and Dash.’
There’s still time to sign up and enter a team, so if you’ve ever fancied jumping in a boat with your friends, family or work colleagues and dashing across a lake, this is your chance.
Alternatively, if getting on the water isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other ways to get involved: through sponsoring a team, volunteering on the day, or exhibiting at the event.
Ian Blackwell, Canoe2 said “The incredible work that the team at Spurgeon’s do, is absolutely vital to thousands of families every year and here at Canoe2 we couldn’t be prouder to support such a hardworking and dedicated charity. We are very excited and honoured to play host to the first “Splash & Dash” KataKanu race event in September and we think everyone involved will be sure to have a really fun day out here on the water with us.”
Well with the smell of sunscreen in the air and the breeze blowing through our hair we are very excited down on the boardwalk for a whole bunch of different reasons…
Firstly - today marks the first day of the summer holiday! For us that means the busy time of the is most definitely upon us as we are open out on the lake at Rushden Lakes every single day (Count ‘em folks - thats seven days a week!) for hire of our canoes, kayaks, katakanus and swan pedalos. Best of all you don’t even need to book to hit the water - just pop in and see us in the Boathouse shop with a grown up per craft!
Secondly - this weekend sees the start of the annual Church Tourism Week - an event that is always close to our heart. Our champing site in Aldwincle at All Saints Church was - we believe - one of the very first Champing spots in the UK and continues to provide a stunning place to stay for up to 16 paddlers at a time!
You can find out more over here - but in the meantime, please do be sure to check out the CCT website to find out more about how you can get involved in Church Tourism Week.
We are very happy to report that following a huge amount of interest in our midweek paddle offer, we have decided to extend it until the end of July.
The offer is based on our midweek paddle options out on the River Nene and is now available until the end of July. We are reducing the price of our Thrapston to Fotheringhay route (one of the most popular routes that we offer out on the River) from £148 to just £135 per person. That includes your canoe hire, and the overnight accommodation at our Barnwell Campsite.
The best part is that this offer is available on any of the beautiful camping and glamping options available onsite; from the Tipi al the way to the brand new Shepherds Hut (which is gorgeous - if you haven’t seen it yet, you can check out a video here)
To take advantage of this offer, get in touch either by phone on 01933 522223 or drop in and see us at the Boathouse at Rushden Lakes!
Well as the sunshine continues to bring ever more first time paddlers into the Boathouse for the first time, we thought we would extend the sunshine even further with a special offer for the month of July.
From now until the end of July we are reducing the price of our Thrapston to Fotheringhay route (one of the most popular routes that we offer) from £148 to £135 per person. That includes your canoe hire, and the overnight accommodation at our Barnwell Campsite.
What’s even more exciting, is that this offer is available on any of the beautiful camping and glamping options available onsite; from the Tipi al the way to the brand new Shepherds Hut.
This offer is available for people looking to book for an overnight paddle Sunday to Thursday and is only available through until the end of July. So whether you are looking to sneak some last minute peace and quiet in before the school holidays, or just looking to expand your paddling experience and hit the river for the first time - this stunning stretch of the River Nene is sure to fit the bill.
A few alliterative lines from a breathlessly busy and surprisingly sunbathed few days down at the Boathouse.
The sunshine has certainly been keeping us busy with a number of trips departing over for the weekend for various one and two day excursions down the River Nene. We’re big fans of this stretch of the river as you probably guessed, but when its bathed in the kind of stunning sunshine we’ve had this last week or two and with a nice breeze blowing along the river, it really is the most stunning place we can imagine to be.
The upturn in the weather has certainly been exciting in that it has also given us the opportunity to hit the water lots more at Rushden Lakes. The last two weeks we’ve been open Monday, Tuesday and Friday all day from 11am to allow folks to pop out when its quieter during the day and allow the kids to get out for a post-school paddle in the afternoon.
At the risk of sounding sentimental - the sound of everyone having fun on the water in the afternoon has been genuinely lovely this last few weeks.
We really hope a few of you are able to join us today (Tuesday 3rd) and indeed Friday (6th) for a quick paddle!
In the meantime - don’r forget that we are also currently looking for new members to join our bonny crew - you can find the full details of those opportunities over here.
We are very excited right now to be on the hunt for new members of the team to join us at Canoe Two.
We are currently actively recruiting for new members of staff to help this expanding business. These new team members will play a central role in helping us offer an exciting one stop shop for paddling adventures to a huge audience. This will include us providing:
Canoe Hire on the River Nene
Short Break canoeing holidays on the River Nene
Short term paddle craft hire on the lake
A Canoe & Kayak Shop
Meeting Room Hire
The role will see the successful candidate assisting with the day to day running of hire services creating an enjoyable and memorable experience, whilst maintaining a high standard of presentation and delivering excellent customer service.
As you might have noticed from our social media feeds just lately, we are all very excited at the Boathouse right now about a brand new addition to our options for overnight accommodation.
Our friends at Nene Valley Boats have long looked after our guests at their Barnwell campsite, and our visitors are always amazed at some of the options available. From our Tipi through to our bell tents there are stunning unique options that make for a welcome refuge after a long day on the river (After a little time round the BBQ / campfire of course!)
This year though, as you might remember from our guest blog earlier in the year, the team have introduced a new Shepherds Hut to the mix as well!
If you don’t know what a Shepherds Hut is; as the name suggests they are a portable, compact dwelling that were traditionally used for Shepherds to stay in while watching their flocks. Presumably by night as the song goes… The use of these little shelters dates back as far as the 15th century in some cases and they have recently become very fashionable again as part of the Tiny Living movement.
The new Shepherds Hut at Barnwell has been beautifully built and decorated by the team at Nene Valley Boats and we are delighted with the feedback we’ve had already from the lucky first few guests who have stayed the night in this unique little space.
Check out more in the short video below and keep your eyes peeled here on the blog in the coming days for the second guest blog from Carol and Dan on the building of the hut.
With the weather set fair for the next few days we are excited to be extending our lake hire offers a Rushden Lakes beyond the weekend this week!
We are open this week Monday and Tuesday (25th / 26th) all day out on the water here for hire of our canoes, kayaks, katakanus and swans. The last hire of the days will be going out on the water at 430 each day so there will be just enough time for an after school paddle in the sunshine!
You don’t need to book to get out on the water, you just need an adult per craft. Pop in and see us down on the Boardwalk at Rushden Lakes - we’re overlooking the water next door to the Wildlife Trust - or for more information, give us a call on 01933 522 223
So if you are a member of our Email list (and survived the GDPR wave a few weeks back!) then you might have noticed the competition that paddled into view over the weekend?
Even if we do say so ourselves, we think its a pretty awesome prize - giving you as it does - the opportunity to WIN A FABULOUS Two-Day Comfy Camping Short Break for Two People!
All you have to do, to be in with a chance of scooping this awesome prize (which could see you reclining in any of our amazing overnight options including the new Shepherds Hut, Yurt or Tipi) is simply kick back for half-an-hour, browse our ever-popular TripChooser Page, and let us know which stunning accommodation option you’d like to stay in overnight if you’re the lucky winner. It literally is that simple!
Will it be:
“Red Kite Cabin”, the Shepherd’s Hut
“Sparrowhawk” the Tipi
“Green Woodpecker”, the Yurt
“Merlin”, the Green Bell Tent
The rules for the competition are below - we can’t wait to hear which of our fab accommodation options you guys fancy the most!
Until next time…
HOW TO ENTER (closing date midnight Wednesday 20th June)
Spend some quality time on our website, to help you choose which of our Comfy Camping accommodation you’d like to stay in if you win our fab two-day trip, Shepherd’s Hut, Tipi, Yurt, or The Green Bell Tent (to learn all about them, and make your choice, you’ll need to explore our Short Breaks Page, and our TripChooser.)
Sign up to our email newsletter using the signup box at the bottom of any page on our website
Follow the validation instructions to ensure you are added to the list properly and receiving emails based on your preferences
Then, simply email us firstname.lastname@example.org, telling us which of the above is your favourite.
One qualifying, easy-peasy question to answer too - just tell us at which of our 3 wonderful camp locations these accommodation options are all based (Wadenhoe, Barnwell, or Fotheringhay)
We will draw the lucky winner, at random, on Thursday 21st June, and let you know that same day. We might use just your first name, and roughly the town/county you live in, when we confirm to the world who won.
If you don’t win, we will drop you an email to let you know you weren’t quite as lucky, and honestly, we might try to encourage you to consider booking anyhow - but that will be just a one time email!
A short note to let you know about some late availability on one of our canoeing courses out here on the water at Rushden Lakes.
As of this moment in time we have late availability on our 2-star British Canoeing certificated course which takes place here on the water next week. The course is a Two day training course taking place Monday 18th / Tuesday 19th June.
The session costs just £160 per person and is delivered by our friends at Cascade Watersports. The session’s and courses at Canoe2 will be using great kit, in a great location, following the British Canoeing syllabi and will be overseen by David who is an experienced Instructor, Coach and Centre Manager.
To find out more about these courses, please visit the page here for more information, or to talk to us about next weeks course - please get in touch with us at the Boathouse on -1933 522 223
Canoe2 and the Race for the Golden Paddle… (Not a Harry Potter sequel)
Well we had a lot of fun on Tuesday afternoon down on the water as we welcomed another large corporate group out onto the water.
Away days and team building days has been something we’ve offered for some time out on the river and our new location at Rushden Lakes makes it even easier for local businesses to get out and have a splash together.
Yesterday we welcomed the team from Wagamama who are all getting to know each other as they prepare to launch the new restaurant in Rushden Lakes next month and the team all seemed to have a lot of fun on a glorious afternoon in East Northamptonshire.
The format for the afternoon saw us pitch teams of 4, 5 and 6 co-workers together in a series of races in our multi-person Katakanus, culminating in a grand final to decide the winner of the Golden Paddle (which we hope to see adoring the walls of the new restaurant when it opens!)
Meanwhile the rest of the team enjoyed a pre-race warm up with a more leisurely swan ride around the lake!
By the end of the day, despite a few slightly damp t-shirt sleeves (!) the team were all in high-spirits and keen to find out how to get back out on the swans again in the future!
We really hope to see the team back here soon and in the meantime, to talk to us about how you could work with us to deliver your next corporate away day or team building afternoon just give us a call! Don’t forget our Boathouse space also features fully stocked meeting room facilities and changing areas so we are able to cater for most requirements!
One of the things we love most about what we do is watching people explore the water and get out a canoe, often for the very first time! As something that has bought us such enjoyment over the years its great to see the next generation getting involved and getting their toes in the water for the first time.
With that in mind we are very excited to announce our first canoe & kayak lessons here at Rushden Lakes. Thats right - as well as giving you everything you need to get out on the water, we can now even provide lessons and tuition to get you paddle ready! The tuition & courses are appropriate for adults aged 18 or over, and teens aged 14 to 17 if they come along with an adult also taking part in the lesson.
Tuition is something we have asked about a lot over the years and so we are really pleased to be able to offer them - in the perfect location of Rushden Lakes! We are offering these lessons in conjunction with the team at Cascade Watersports which is owned and run by David Coulson who has over 20 years of instructing experience
David’s mission at Cascade is simply to provide a brilliant service that is right for you. The session’s and courses at Canoe2 will be using great kit, in a great location, following the British Canoeing syllabi and will be overseen by David who is an experienced Instructor, Coach and Centre Manager. He will strive to give you a canoe or kayak experience to meet your needs, whether it’s your first time or you’re looking to perfect those more advanced techniques.
Our offerings this season include taster sessions, bespoke training and “British Canoeing” certificated courses – get in touch to discuss your needs, on 01933 522 223. You can also find more information on the courses and what they entail over here on the website!
Well, as wedding fever grips the nation, the team at the boathouse are - honestly - more excited about the weather forecast for the big weekend, as it looks like its going to be a beautiful weekend here in East Northamptonshire.
The next few weeks are shaping to be extremely busy down here at the boathouse with not only a lovely weekend on the horizon for this weekend, but also a bank holiday next weekend leading into the next school break at the end of May.
Across all these days we are open for boating both out on the lake and indeed further afield down the River Nene.
Getting out on the water here at Rushden Lakes couldn’t be simpler - all you need is an adult per craft, and you dont even need to book. Just pop in and see us down on the Boardwalk between House of Fraser and the Wildlife Trust. For those looking for a bit more of a challenge - or even just a slightly longer trip, then our river trips are definitely worth checking out. We offer options from a couple of hours paddle, to a multi-day trip; so if you are still looking for activities for half term week then we’re sure you can find something you will be interested in.
You can find more information on getting out on the lake here and check out our online Trip Chooser here. This tool allows you to find the perfect trip for you and your little crew so don’t delay - check it out now and investigate some of the stunning waterways and scenery the Nene Valley has to offer.
Well we had a stunning weekend out on the water this bank holiday weekend - as the sunshine finally arrived in Rushden to give everything a gorgeous sun kissed hue!
The lake and the river were both busy all weekend as many people took advantage of the multi-day trip options to get out on the water and explore the River Nene a little in the sunshine. Otherwise our clan of swans were super busy with a steady queue of visitors all over the weekend keen to get out and enjoy what might be (whisper it!) the start of Summer 2018…!
Through the coming months, the lake will be open every weekend right the way through to the end of September, and through the summer holiday then we will be out pretty much 7 days a week!
Elsewhere as the season starts to blink into life along the river, we’ve been really enjoying getting people out on the first of our Nature paddles with our friends at the Wildlife Trust (places for which are filling up fast - get involved while you can!) and our friends at Nene Valley Boats are putting the finishing touches on some amazing new accommodation options for the new season.
We will be sharing more details about all of this over the coming weeks so keep your eyes peeled on our social media feeds for more information!
Tuition Sessions and BCU Certificated Courses, now available at Canoe2, Rushden Lakes
We’re very excited to announce our first canoe & kayak lessons here at Rushden Lakes. The tuition & courses are appropriate for adults aged 18 or over, and teens aged 12 to 17 if they come along with an adult also taking part in the lesson.
If you just want dates & prices, please scroll straight to the bottom…
Introducing this season at Canoe 2:
•Tandem canoeing tuition
•BC 1 Star Award
•BC 2 Star Award
Delivered by Cascade Watersports.
About Cascade Watersports:
Cascade Watersports is owned and run by David Coulson who has over 20 years of instructing experience
David’s mission at Cascade is simply to provide a brilliant service that is right for you. The session’s and course’s at Canoe2 will be using great kit, in a great location, following the British Canoeing syllabi and will be overseen by David who is an experienced Instructor, Coach and Centre Manager. He will strive to give you a canoe or kayak experience to meet your needs, whether it’s your first time or you’re looking to perfect those more advanced techniques.
Our offerings this season include short trips, taster sessions, bespoke training and certificated courses – get in touch to discuss your needs, on 01933 522 223
Try your hand at canoeing or kayaking with tuition from our coach. Participants will use one of our sit-on-top type kayaks.
The session will start with a safety briefing and you will be introduced to your equipment before going onto the water. You will then have the opportunity to paddle around on the lake learning basic techniques to control your boat.
There are no pre-requisites for this session.
BC 1 Star Award:
The BC One Star Course is a one-day introductory course to paddlesports, which can be completed using kayaks or canoes, or a mix of both. The course covers the introductory
skills required to start getting in control of moving your boat around, and an understanding of different types of boating, equipment, paddling skills, rescue skills and associated considerations.
The BC 1 Star Award Course Syllabus Includes:
•Safe moving of boats, launching, getting in and out
•Paddling forwards, steering and boat control
•Rescue skills and emptying capsized boats
•Considerations around canoeing and kayaking such as access, equipment, health and safety
BC 2 Star Award:
The BC Two Star Course is a two-day improver’s course, building on skills learned during the One Star course and introducing new ones. The course involves learning skills in both canoes and kayaks, learning to use both a single-bladed paddle (canoe) and a double-bladed paddle (kayak), to gain breadth of experience and understand how the paddle, boat and water interact. More in-depth boat handling skills are introduced and developed, and two different sheltered water locations are used during the course.
Try your hand at tandem canoeing with tuition from our coach, using one of our kitted out canoes.
For many people, paddling is all about the quiet, stress-free calm that comes with heading out alone and under your own power. Think about it: taking the boat out for an early-morning trip across a glassy, mist-covered lake; sliding silently alone with your thoughts. It’s one of the most sublime experiences in paddling.
But, add a second person to the mix, and that everyday excursion takes on a whole new aspect: teamwork. Now imagine gliding across that water in perfect sync; making complex four-handed manoeuvres, and sharing the unique partnership that only tandem paddlers can understand.
The session will start with a safety briefing and you will be introduced to your equipment before going onto the water. You will then have the opportunity to paddle around on the lake learning basic techniques to control your boat as a tandem and learning how to become in sync with each other.
There are no pre-requisites for this session.
More Dates Will Be Added, So Do Call To Let Us Know Your Interest on 01933 522 223.
Dates Currently Confirmed for 1 and 2 Star Awards:
1 Star Awards - One Day from 9.30am to 4.30pm - £100 per person
Saturday April 21st
Saturday May 12th
Saturday June 16th
Saturday July 21st
Thursday August 23rd
2 Star Awards - Two Days from 9.30am to 4.30pm - £160 per person
Saturday & Sunday September 22nd/23rd
Dates yet to be confirmed:
Kayak Tuition Sessions - 2 hours - £40 per person (using 1-person sit-on-top kayak)
Canoe Tuition Sessions - 2 hours - £35 per person (using 2-person Open Canoe) - Coming on your own? Not a problem! If numbers are right, we’ll match you up with somebody to share your canoe
Tandem Canoeing Sessions - Half Day - £60 per person
Payment is in full upon booking - Please note that we can not run courses unless we have a minimum of 4 people booked. If course cancelled you will be informed at least a week before your chosen date, and we will hope to agree another date. Of course, if another date can not be agreed, your payment will be refunded.
Unfortunately we can not accept children under 12 years of age on our courses, and children aged 12 to 17 must be accompanied by an adult also taking part in the lessons
“Buy two, get two free” on half-hour hires of swan pedalos
As the countdown to the new season draws ever closer (LESS THAN A WEEK TO GO YOU GUYS!!) We thought we would celebrate with a bit of a special offer on our Swan hires here at Rushden Lakes.
The swans have been a super popular addition to our range of crafts - especially with families - and so for this week only we are running a “Buy two, get two free” offer on half-hour hires of swan pedalos. Here you buy a block of four, half hour hires for just £40(!!) that you can use at any point throughout the 2018 season. Think of it like a little season ticket for the water!
This offer though is only available to pre-purchase pre-season, and as the new season begins this week that means you only have until this Friday - 30th March - to take advantage!
We were very excited to get back out on the water over the weekend down here at Rushden Lakes!
We decided in light of the upturn in the sunshine, to take advantage and get some of our canoes and swans back out on the water. Not only have we been looking for an excuse to get back out there since Christmas, but it was also the perfect opportunity for some of our new team members to get a taste of a day out on the water as well.
Its been a lot of fun getting to know our new crew members and we will be sharing some blogs to get to know them over the coming weeks.
In the meantime - don’t forget, we are (weather permitting) back out on the water every day over the Easter Holiday next week. Pop in and see us down on the Boardwalk at Rushden Lakes ( no booking required) although best to call and check first if you are visiting from far away as we are very much at the mercy of the weather every day!
Until then - we’ll be polishing our paddles and dusting off the life jackets!
Well while we’ve all been itching to get back out on the water since we put away the paddles at the end of last year, we have still been getting out on the water here at Rushden Lakes assisting our good friends at the Wildlife Trust here with a very special little project.
Our man Aaron was dispatched on the safety boat to help out this week and so we handed the Guest Blogger key for this week over to Toni from The Wildlife Trust fills us in below on what they were up to…
“This week at Rushden Lakes, we launched something called a tern raft. This is a floating structure, which is aimed to help a scarce species in the UK, the Common tern, to maintain and if possible increase the local population numbers. By the 19th century, these birds were almost brought to exctinction due to the fact that they were hunted for their long tail feathers and wings, which were used in millinery. In recent times, toxic chemicals and the success of some gull species could be the main limiting factors for the terns to thrive.
Again, our friends from Canoe2 give us an invaluable support to operate in the waters of Skew Bridge Lake. We are indebted to them for offering their expert help, and to contribute to a conservation action which can make a difference in the Nene River Valley. Thanks Aaron for directing the operation so precisely and safely!
The tern raft is a floating platform which is topped with gravel. Common terns like gravel banks, and in general islands with bare ground, to make their nests. These habitats have become really scarce in the last decades, due What we have done is just simulate a tiny gravel bank in an island, to attract the terns. Their nests are basically a small depression in the ground, which in many cases is not built with grassy or woody materials, as they can just lay their eggs over the stones. The small spotted eggs concile with the gravel or the ground, and are hardly seen by predators.
Common terns are frequent in the Nene Wetlands Nature Reserve lakes in summer, when they look for fish or invertebrates, which are really abundant on site. Watching them fishing is one of the most spectacular wildlife spectacles we have at the Nene Wetlands.
In order to prevent that other birds outcompete with the potentially nesting Common terns, we have covered the raft temporarily with a net. Once the terns arrive in April from their winter headquarters in Southern Africa, we´ll remove the net to allow these birds to explore the raft. Then they will decide if they like it for nesting. The raft is also fitted with perpex walls, in order to avoid that the Otters and other animals come on board and predate the tern nests.
It is going to be a very exciting time of observation in the nest months, to see if these lovely birds are interested in our tern raft. We invite everybody to come to the nature reserve and follow how this nice project evolves.”
To find out more about what the team at the Wildlife Trust are working on, pop in and see them in the building next to ours on the Boardwalk here at Rushden Lakes, or visit the website!
The Easter Bunny - and the 2018 Season is Just Around the Corner!!
Well we’ve been excitedly building up to it for a few weeks now but the arrival of the 2018 season out on the water is finally nearly upon us!
Two Special Offers Still Running…
This week we are running the final 2 weeks of our 2 specials offers that are running right now. The first of these offers is for up to 10% on river trips and short breaks through the 2018 season to begin exploring the beautiful River Nene a little. We are also running a second offer right now for you to double up and take a whopping 20% off on advanced bookings for our Premium bundles which include 3 and 4 night trips down the river including some of our amazing Comfy Camping options.
You can find details on all of these offers right now over on the Special Offers page. Be warned though - this be the last chance to snag a bargain on 2018 bookings so get involved now while you still can!
In the meantime, we also wanted to share some very exciting plans for the upcoming Easter break with you all. We have been getting lots of emails and messages of late asking us when we will be back out on the lake here at Rushden lakes and we are pleased to say that the answer is VERY SOON!
Our plan at present is to open the lake for canoes, kayaks and the swans every day of the Easter school holiday. This will mean the lake is open every day from Good Friday on March 30th, right up to Sunday April 15th (inclusive) from 11.30 am until 4pm. As ever - no booking is required for any of our lake craft - all you need is an adult in each boat and you can get right out on the water (after being fitted for lifejackets and given a safety briefing that is!) starting at as little as £3.34 per person.
Full details on the costs for hiring crafts out on the lake can be found over on the website here.
While we would hate to leave such an exciting piece of news on a down-note, its worth noting that the weather will play a role in our plans for the easter holidays. If you are making a special trip to Rushden Lakes to get out on the water then we would advise everyone to give us a call in the Boathouse on 01933 522223 to check that everything is running before you set out!
Well things are certainly gearing up for the new season down here on the boardwalk as Easter weekend (and thus our first foray back out into water for 2018) is fast approaching.
The upcoming Easter weekend will be the first opportunity of the season to take our fleet of canoes, kayaks and swans out on the water here at Rushden Lakes. We can’t wait to get out there again!
In the meantime we’ve also been looking slightly further down the timeline at the diary starting to fill up nicely with lots of bookings for our short breaks and river trips. We might be a little biased but for our mind; there really is no better way to spend a few lazy days paddling down the stunning River Nene. As well as our short paddles and one night stays, we also offer a range of options for multi-night stays up to 3 or 4 nights.
A popular route among our guests is the winding stretch that takes visitors from Rushden Lakes right the way up to Wansford.
On this trip you’ll start out from our base at The Boathouse at Rushden Lakes, heading downstream to Islip/Thrapston for your first overnight stop at either The Woolpack Inn, then on day two, continue to Barnwell (perhaps via the idyllic Kings Head riverside pub at Wadenhoe for lunch) to stop at the fabulous Lower Farm B&B. Day three sees you continue downstream to Fotheringhay where you’ll stay at the beautiful Castle Farm Guest House, right by the river. The 4th and final day, you can continue downstream to the final pick-up point at Wansford, ready for your transfer back to your start-point. Alternatively, if you prefer, you could on your last day simply choose to explore the river around Fotheringhay further, or simply take some pleasant walks around Fotheringhay, or spend a long lunch in the excellent Falcon Pub, serving superb food & drink. We can always pick up from Fotheringhay if you wish.
Since we first began offering trips out on the river, we have been fortunate to work with some wonderful folks along the river (including all of the folks above and our friends at Nene Valley Boats) to provide some memorable accommodation options. Starting out with the ever popular bell tents and yurts, we were very excited to recently add the church to our list of options and this summer will see the new Shepherds Hut open for its first season as well. We like to think there is genuinely an option for everyone and all of those options add up to a truly memorable adventure.
Our other multi-night stays offer a range of other options including the stretch from Thrapston to Wansford which takes in a selection of some of the most picturesque villages that Northamptonshire has to offer, or how about a stopover in Wadenhoe in one of our wonderful comfy camping Bell Tents? There are loads of choices - all coming with lifelong memories as standard.
You can find more about all of our multi night stays over on the Trip Chooser.
The Special Offer Part!!
Right now the premium packages mentioned above (Bundles 7, 13, 14 & 15) are all subject to a whopping 20% off if paying in full and 10% if you prefer to pay just a 50% deposit on bookings for the 2018 season.
These are our premium adventures, four or five days with 3 or 4 nights in comfy camping options, or B&B/Hotels. All of our trips feature fantastic breakfasts as standard and include baggage transfer all the way, and of course always pick up from end of trip.
Well what a week its been down here at the Boathouse!
No sooner had we finished stashing away our brand new haul of kayaks and sit on tops for the new season (which you can read all about and see videos on here) than the snow arrived at Rushden Lakes again for a very cold few days down here on the boardwalk.
As the snow thaws though, we are already thinking about the new season and long summer days out on the water. With that in mind; we have taken the decision to extend our current 10% sale for one more week. Right now then we are currently offering 10% Off all trips & bundles when you book and pay in full by 12th March (5% Off if you prefer to book with a 50% deposit) All trips are shown at full price on our website, and the discount will be applied when you phone to book - 01933 522 223
Take a look at our Trip Chooser to find out more about our wide range of trips, from 2 hours, to 5 days with accommodation included - Don’t worry if you don’t know your dates yet, just book & pay now, leaving dates open to confirm later, and you’ll still benefit from these great offers…
Check out the special offers page on the site now for full details on how to book but remember - this sale will end EOP Monday 12th March so don’t miss out!
As we noted earlier in the year during our Pre-Paddled Sale, we like to refresh our stock of canoes and crafts every year to make sure that our paddlers are out on the water on the very best craft they can be.
We were all very excited then this week to take delivery of a brand new delivery of kayaks of all shapes and sizes that had everyone down at the Boathouse excited! The new delivery included over 60 new kayaks and sit-on-tops from the likes of Dagger, Islander and Wilderness Systems all at really great prices.
All the Kayaks we have in stock are great for new paddlers with little or no previous of getting on the water by themselves. With an extended range paddling accessories from Palm to compliment these boats, we can fully kit you out when you buy a new Kayak from Canoe2. Oh and don’t forget you can get 10% off your paddle accessories when you buy a kayak from us.
Our new 2018 range of Kayaks is now available in the shop for you to check out and soon as the weather warms up a little, demo craft will be available to try out on the lake. Kayak Prices start from £335 and our stocked range are all UK made. So pop in and see us next time you visit Rushden Lakes; we are at the end of the Boardwalk between the Wildlife Trust and House of Fraser.
For now - you can find more about some of the new line of boats available with the selection of videos below:
In the latest in our series of Featured Paddles, we are highlighting one of our more popular multi-day trips which takes a gentle 2 day paddle through the stunning Nene Valley.
The trip is the picturesque route that takes you from Thrapston to Fotheringhay. On this beautiful trip down the river you’ll have opportunities to stop and take a break, enjoy your flask of coffee or have a picnic, at any of the eight locks you’ll come across over the two days. With wonderful overnight accommodation in our new Shepherds Hut.
The first day is one of our favourites, starting at 9.45am, offering an outstanding day on the river, and at less than 8.5 miles, this one shouldn’t be too testing. You’ll be getting into the water at the Nine Arches Bridge in Thrapston/Islip to begin your paddle. The King’s Head at Wadenhoe is well situated for lunch and reckoned by The Sunday Times to be the best riverside pub in Britain, where you can step out of your canoe straight into their garden.
Also on this trip you’ll be passing by Wadenhoe’s Norman Church, The Lyveden Way, Lilford Hall and a beautiful Arched Bridge at Lilford that can only really be appreciated from the river.
After a days paddling out on the water, two things are going to be very exciting. The first is the discovery that our Breakfast pack features literally EVERYTHING you need to cook up a hearty cooked breakfast. The breakfast box contains thick rashers of dry cured back bacon and traditional recipe pork sausages from our local butcher, Seven Wells at Oundle, plus eggs, mushrooms and tomatoes.
Even more excitingly is your accommodation for the evening…
At the top of Barnwell camp, beyond the Yurt and Tipi is our latest project, a cosy Shepherd’s Hut made just for two. From its vantage point you can enjoy lovely views across the Nene Valley. The Shepherd’s Hut has a double bed with a fully sprung mattress, duvet, pillows and fresh bed linen. The Hut also benefits from double glazing, solar lighting, a USB socket, and of course there is the wood burning stove to keep you warm and toasty on those colder nights. Outside, there is a picnic bench and firepit where you can enjoy a campfire under the stars. And don’t despair if you have a larger group, just be sure to take a look at our Yurt, Tipi & Bell Tent options.
You can find out a little more about this super exciting new part of our accommodation offering, with this guest blog from our friends at Indigo Camping / Nene Valley Boats.
Your second day will take you on down the river past Oundle Marina or you can paddle the backwater around Barnwell Country Park taking you around the outskirts of the town of Oundle, and past the little villages of Cotterstock and Tansor. Your trip ends at Fotheringhay, a really lovely and historically important village, being the birthplace of Richard III, as well as the location of the execution of Mary Queen of Scots in 1587, after being held captive in Fotheringhay Castle (no longer standing).
Before we pick you up at 3.45pm from Fotheringhay and transport you back to your car in Thrapston, you may have time to enjoy a drink or a bite to eat at the excellent Falcon Inn!
You can find out more and find details on how to book this stunning weekend trip over here…
Well last week, we kicked off this series of blogs featuring our various paddles routes, with a post about the trip from Thrapston up to Oundle. Today we thought we would focus on something a little shorter in length and ideal for first timers!
One of the most popular options that people took up throughout the 2017 season was the option of a 2 hour paddle from Rushden Lakes.
This trip is the shortest route we offer out on the river (you can of course book as little as 30 minutes out on the Lake here) and essentially gives you the opportunity to explore the river as far as you feel comfortable with (or are able to before you need to start paddling home!).
The trips depart from our Boathouse here at Rushden Lakes (which makes getting to us really easy - we are down on the boardwalk here at the Lakes next door to House of Fraser) and once you’ve paddled across the lake, you voyage out onto the River Nene itself.
Being the shortest trip we offer, the trip is a really popular introduction for youngsters and families looking to get out onto the water for the first time. We don’t have an age limit of our paddlers although we do insist that there is at least one adult in each craft.
This particular trip is perfect for our open top Canadian Canoes or a double Kayak for any pairs looking to hit the water.
Once you are out on the river, the bustle of the shops at the Lakes will feel a million miles away, with miles of beautiful countryside and river to explore - packed with some unique wildlife along the way.
We can’t wait for the 2018 season to get underway and welcome more new faces out onto the water. Does this trip sound like a great morning to you? Let us know on social media which trip you think you might like to tackle this summer!
Well no sooner have we finished putting the christmas decorations away and started daydreaming about getting out on the water again than another celebration appears in the diary and the shops down here at Rushden Lakes seem to get a lot busier all of a sudden!
We’re talking of course about Valentines Day which takes places this week and we are very pleased to say that not only is it not too late to get hold of the perfect gift for your loved one - but we can absolutely help!
Every year Valentines seems to be the same old story - flowers, chocolates, Michael Buble CD’s - its enough to drive even the most hardened Romantics among us heading for the doors of Clintons Cards.
So this year - why not go for something a little out of the ordinary for a loved one. Our gift vouchers make a perfect Valentines gift for partners and loved ones. They come in a variety of price points so you can tailor your gift perfectly. The vouchers are also super flexible as they can be used on items here in the Boathouse shop, lake hire here at Rushden Lakes of our Canoes and Swans and even river trips down the River Nene.
We like to think its a gift that will definitely result in some long-lasting memories!
You can buy the vouchers either in our Boathouse Shop down here at Rushden Lakes or (if you are super quick) by buying online and getting them mailed to you!
This week on the blog, we have turned the keys over the team at Indigo Camping who support us by providing a number of our stunning glamping and comfy camping options - including our famous Yurt! The team are currently hard at work on another new exciting addition for 2018 and Carol, takes up the story…
There has been much excitement at base this week with the arrival of our new project for 2018. In the depths of winter, sat around the wood burner with a glass of red, thoughts turned to the start of the new season and long summer evenings. We wondered what type of quirky accommodation we could offer this year in addition to our lovely tents. We came up with the idea of the Shepherd’s Hut, now christened Red Kite Cabin after the rather majestic birds which are resident at Barnwell. This will sit at the top of the camp with commanding views across the Nene Valley. So, on Monday, this turned up on the back of an articulated lorry.
When we unwrapped it, we discovered four metal wheels and a thousand pieces of wood!
Once we had retrieved the instructions that were well hidden somewhere in the depths of the pile of wood and had a good read (and three cups of coffee), it didn’t seem too bad! We’re now well underway to completing the base. Just a few gallons of wood preservative to go and we can start putting the sides up.
Now, more importantly where did I put those colour charts!
To be continued….
We will check back in with the guys to see how the build is going, later in the month!
While it looks we’ve still got a few nippy mornings ahead of us yet down here on the lake, with the evenings starting to stretch out a little - it definitely feels like we are starting to inch closer towards the new 2018 season.
Preparations are underway already down here at the Boathouse as we begin looking for new members of staff to join the team and come aboard (pun fully intended) for the new season. You can click here to find out more about the roles and what they all entail, as well as details on how to apply over on special Jobs Page.
In the meantime though, as we begin daydreaming of sunny summer paddles and BBQs down by the river, we thought we might begin a new series of blogs, highlighting some of our favourite trips down the river.
You can find all of our trips over on the online Trip Chooser, but in the meantime keep checking back over the coming days and weeks for loads of summer inspiration!
The first trip we wanted to highlight today was the trip from Thrapston to Oundle which is one of our more popular paddles.
The trip is a favourite among our customers for lots of reasons;
Firstly the scenery along this particular stretch of the river is absolutely stunning and if you’re brave enough to get your phone out in the canoe, you can be sure to make your Instagram friends very jealous of your day out on the water. Some of the churches along this stretch of the river are particularly beautiful - especially in the early evening as the sunset paints the river in all sorts of gorgeous shades.
The other great thing about this particular trip is that its a full day paddle - a nice halfway home between an overnight stay (of which we offer many options!) and a shorter couple of hours paddle which many of our beginners tend to favour to begin with.
Our personal favourite part of this particular stretch of the river though, has to be the lunches at The Kings Head at Wadenhoe. If you’ve ever visited, then you will know that you can pull your canoe onto the lengthy stretch of river bank, where the beer garden is an idyllic riverside spot for a tasty lunch and maybe even a small glass of wine in the sunshine - made even more appealing when you’ve been paddling all morning to get there!
We’ve enclosed a short video below that one of our customers shared from this particular trip last year - see for yourself what this particular paddle entails below!
In the meantime for more inspiration, please visit our online trip chooser to select your ideal maiden voyage - and check back soon for more blogs on the rest of our wonderful paddling options.
This week on the blog, we thought we would do something a little different and open up the channel to a guest blog from Jill from Do We Mind Northamptonshire who was down at Rushden Lakes last weekend very for a very special event… We’ll let Jill take up the story…
Sunday January 21st, was #NationalHugDay. Who knew? Not the folks of Northamptonshire, down at Rushden Lakes that’s for sure, until in my wisdom, I showed up to try and tell them about it!
What I hadn’t bargained for was the fact that it was freezing cold and snowing, but I couldn’t let the weather dampen my spirits now could I?
Do_We_Mind Northamptonshire is an online Social Media campaign to encourage people to ‘pay it forward’. To show each other a bit more love. We aim to make a difference to what people think, say and do and in the process, help them to be more open to the concept of helping others.
On Sunday, it felt like most people are already open to this concept, they just need a gentle nudge in the right direction and that is heart-warming.
99% of the people I approached and asked if they wanted a ‘free hug’, were delighted to oblige. They may have muttered something afterwards about the mad, snow soggy nutter in the woolly hat, but at least they were polite at the time and didn’t hurt my feelings!
Am I enough?
The build-up to ‘huggy Sunday’ had, for me, been a bit difficult. And this just shows how it can be hard to put yourself out there. How very easy it is to just sit in a corner and not take part in day to day stuff, let alone mad ideas like this one!
For me, it is great to realise that I went from feeling genuinely quite scared about the prospect of hugging strangers, to feeling really loved. And, I can categorically tell you, that feeling is a wonderful thing. We all spend too much time worrying about whether we are good enough. Thin enough, pretty enough, clever enough, rich enough? But yesterday, I WAS ENOUGH. Full stop!
I was good enough to be hugged and that made me feel incredible.
If you follow us on our social media accounts (details at the bottom), just look at some of the other photos too, it is quite clear that my fellow huggers were also feeling the love, their faces say it all!
My first hug on camera, was with Rich from Bewiched Coffee after having downed a latte to try and keep out the cold. And you know what, that was a good coffee… and a good hug! I am usually a Costa girl, but my allegiance is changing, and for a local coffee company too I am pleased to tell you.
We are hoping to talk more to Bewiched Coffee over the next few weeks about the possibility of us championing the idea of ‘suspended coffee’ together! For those of you that don’t know, that simply means, when you feel the urge, you buy an extra cup of coffee and ask for it to be suspended.
When someone homeless or down on their luck comes in and asks if there is any suspended coffee, they are given the coffee you bought earlier. Simple! This might not work so well at Rushden Lakes, but for Bewiched Coffee in Wellingborough, it would be the best idea ever. We look forward to chatting more with them soon.
There is also the potential to do something with Canoe2 going forward as well, so watch this space for more information, we are talking to them about possibilities.
Before I go, I just need to mention someone else.
The man that on the day, not only took some great photos, but metaphorically held my hand and gave me the confidence to do what I did. Jon Farmer from JP Foto. He kindly offered, with not too much twisting of arms, to come and do his bit for the campaign by taking the photographs… in the snow! Thank you, Jon!
So, did I sit in the corner crying and rocking for the rest of the afternoon?
No, I didn’t feel the need to do that.
I did sit, with a bit of an inane grin on my face for a few minutes when I got home, thinking about what I had just done and feeling a bit overwhelmed. All those scary strangers… I surely couldn’t talk to another human for at least the next 24 hours, now could I?
But those feelings soon left me. I had put myself out there and I felt good about that.
A quick update over on the blog this week as we are busy as beavers down on the Lakes right now gearing up for the new 2018 season.
To make way for a fleet of brand new canoes and kayaks that are currently on order for the new season, we are holding a limited time clearance event to clear out the remaining few crafts in the Boathouse compound.
There are some amazing bargains to be had from top name manufacturers like Hou Canoes and Wavesport (a particular favourite of our Lake Manager Aaron) including brand new crafts and a handful of ex-demonstration models which are a even bigger bargain than usual.
You can find full information - as well as some photos of the crafts - over here on the special offers page, or feel free to pop in and see us at Rushden Lakes. The Boathouse shop is open 7 days a week down on the Boardwalk.
In the latest in our series of Meet the Team blogs, we get to know a little more about our Lake Activities Manager Aaron - who as you might have noticed is the main man currently on the hunt for new members of the team to join us here at Canoe 2.
Name: Aaron Jones
Title: Lake Activities Manager
How long have you worked at Canoe2?: I Have worked at Canoe2 since May 2017 and must admit the team were very welcoming, I have enjoyed my time here to date.
What did you do before joining the team?: I have worked for 5 years in a different industry servicing lab instruments, this got a little tedious….. I Have also worked in the outdoor industry for 5 years doing things such as supervising hire operations, running kayaking/ canoeing sessions, raft building, paddle boarding and even archery. This is where my passion lies, I mainly just enjoy being outdoors! my main role here is to oversee the lake hire operations. This includes making sure everyone on the lake is safe and has a pleasant and memorable experience. You are not supposed to swim in the lake but chances are, if you do I will be the person/ one of the people rescuing you!
What do you do day-to-day at Canoe2?: I think it would be quicker to ask what I didn’t do!
What’s your favourite thing about your job?: The summer the fact every day is different, knowing that what we do makes people happy…the list goes on.
How are you in a canoe?!: I have not capsized one BY ACCIDENT in a long time and I paddle white water every now and then, so I would say not too bad.
Well - as we ease ourselves into January and start gearing up for the new year ahead, there are loads of exciting things going on here at Canoe 2 that we thought we would roll up into one handy blog for you guys!
First up, following amazing demand over the last week of our Winter Warmer sale, we have taken the decisions to extend the sale on Short Breaks for 2018 for just a little while longer. You can find more information on the exact details over on our special offers page, but be sure to check quickly as this offer will only be on until next monday - January 15th.
Secondly, we are currently on the hunt for new members of the team to join us here at Canoe2 for the summer season. You can find the details of the role and what it entails by downloading this document, which gives all of the information as well as how to apply.
With so much happening down here at the Lake, may we leave you with a gentle prod to connect with us on social media (you can find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Youtube) at ‘Canoe Two’ to make sure you never miss an update.
Well - while the team are busy in the shop helping customers with some last minute bargains at the end of our Winter Warmer sale (which ends today), we are also very exited to be looking ahead to the summer season already!
With one eye on a very busy summer ahead (certainly if the evidence of last summer was anything to go by!) we are currently looking to recruit a few new members of the team at the Boathouse to join us for the summer season.
The team here are the most important part of what Canoe 2 has to offer. Not only are they the friendly first face our visitors meet at the shop, but they are also highly trained and responsible for the safety of everyone when out on the water. We couldnt be prouder of the wonderful team we’ve assembled this year and we cant wait to welcome some new faces for the 2018 season.
You can find out more about the role by downloading this document, which will give you a little more information about what the role would entail and how to apply. We genuinely cant wait to meet some new faces very soon. In the meantime if you have any queries about the role, please don’t hesitate to contact us either in person here at the Boathouse store, or via the telephone and we will be happy to help.
Firstly may we take the opportunity to wish all of our friends and followers out there a very happy New Year! We really hope everyone had a fantastic break out there…
In the meantime, even as we take down the tree and shake the glitter off of the lifejackets here at the Boathouse. there are plenty of reasons to be excited - not least our Winter Warmer sale which is on right now!
There are some amazing bargains to be had in the Boathouse store including:
20% Off 2018 4 or 5 day trips out on the River Nene - whether you want to bring your own Tent or take advantage of one of our fantastic glamping Bundles)
15% Off everything else (with the exception of the nature paddles that we run in partnership with our friends at the Wildlife Trust)
Big in-store sale on most lines, ranging from 20% to 35%, as attached on hats, clothing, dry bags and other accessories for your time out on the water - or indeed just out in nature!
Finally a clearance of in-store canoes and SOT’s continues at marked prices - with some amazing opportunities for bargains on offer!
Do pop in and see us to find out more - the Boathouse shop is open from 10am every day down on the Boardwalk at Rushden Lakes - and the sale runs until Monday January 8th!
Well as the year finally draws to a close and the last few gift vouchers make their way to the postbox we thought we would share a quick note on our Christmas opening hours which are slightly different from normal.
This coming weekend (23/24) our shop will be open for a longer day than normal on Saturday 23rd - 9am to 7pm - with Sunday the 24th seeing us open from 9am but closing early at 3pm. Please note, this means that any last minute orders for digital versions of our gift vouchers need to be placed - either via the website or on the phone - by 2pm to give the team to get them across to you.
The Boathouse shop will then be closed from 3pm Christmas Eve and reopen at 10am on December 28th. We will then be open from 10-6pm every day between Christmas and New Year with the exception being New Years Day when we will be closed. Please keep your eyes peeled on our social channels for details of some great offers coming in the new year sales.
For now though - from all of us at Canoe Two, may we take this opportunity to wish everyone a very happy and (hopefully!) restful holiday season, we will leave you with our official Boathouse Christmas Playlist for this year which we’ve been collating over on Spotify.
As the end of the year rolls around, it seems like a perfect time to take stock and reflect on what has been a crazy, busy, exciting and successful year for the team here at Canoe Two.
The year started in a flurry of packing and unpacking as we prepared for the move from our old base down near Ditchford Lock to our swanky new facilities at the Boathouse here at Rushden Lakes. While we moved in near the completion of the project, it was still very much a building site and we quickly got used to being dressed in hi-vis vests and helmets as we made our way around the site.
The new facilities here at the Boathouse gave us lots to think about that we had never had to before - not least the fact that we now had a brand new shop to stock and run overlooking the lake here at Rushden Lakes. Retail was a brand new world to lots of us and we’ve learnt a lot through the course of the year!
In addition to the new shop, we also took delivery of a stunning new meeting room and event space (which you can find more about here) and became the custodians of the lake here at Rushden Lakes. That meant that in addition to our river trips along the River Nene, we also were now able to offer our guests the chance to have a paddle on the lake in our canoes, kayaks and pedalo swans.
Before we knew it the launch weekend was upon us and we welcome hundreds of friends, families and local dignitaries down to the boathouse for our official launch event. As you can see from the video below, we were blessed with some stunning sunshine for the evening and a great evening was had by all.
From then on its been a breathless blur all year as we have met a continuous stream of new friendly faces and guests in our boathouse shop all eager to get out onto the water for the first time.
Indeed earlier in the summer we were even lucky enough to welcome the country file team out onto the water when they visited the Wetlands with our friends at the Wildlife Trust.
All told been its been a real adventure this year and none of it would have been possible without the hard work and dedication of our incredible team here at the Boathouse, and without the support and loyalty of our guests that join us out onto the water. Being a part of so many peoples adventures is a part of our job that we always cherish and one that will continue to be the gift that keeps giving all the way through 2018!
For now - enjoy a wonderful christmas and new year period.
A very quick note from the team at the Boathouse to let you know that due to extraordinary interest in our recent flash sale, we have decided to extend the offer!
The offer - you may remember - was for bookings made for the 2018 season, and can snag you up to a whopping 20% off your booking - including the accommodation (in either our comfy camping options or the Church!). The offer was due to end on Monday 4th, but due to such high-levels of interest we have decided to extend it one more week - giving you up until the end of business Monday December 11th to take advantage.
Guests who pay for half of their trip at the point of booking can take 10% off the cost, while by paying for the trip in full at the point of booking, you can double up for a whopping 20% off the total cost.
And even if you don’t know your dates (or the trip is a gift), you can still take advantage of this offer, we’ll simply leave the dates open for you.
Life Jackets and Buoyancy Aids at the Boathouse Shop
Well would you believe it - we are now less than 30 days to Christmas and things are ramping up to a near fever pitch in the Boathouse shop!
As if all of the excitement of our first Christmas down here at Rushden Lakes wasn’t enough, we must have had an eggnog too many while putting up the decorations as we have got some amazing bargains on in our clearance event right now as well. Click here to find details of some of the amazing bargains up for grabs right now.
In the meantime our intrepid (and very photogenic) colleagues Richard and Ian recently took the time out to put a little video together showcasing the range of lifejackets and buoyancy aids available down here in our Boathouse shop.
A buoyancy aid or lifejacket is of course - an incredibly serious piece of equipment when you are out on the water and so we are very careful to ensure the lines we carry here in the shop are the finest available out there on the market - including the excellent Baltic line of life preservers.
We have a range of options and sizes available here in the shop - including some for your furry four-legged companions (as you will see in the video) so feel free to pop in and maybe pick up all the accessories you need to go with that great bargain of a canoe we mentioned above!
With the run up to Christmas well and truly on now (wit just 29 days until the big day remaining!) we must have had one too many eggnogs because we’ve just unveiled some unbelievable special offers.
For a very limited time, we have a number of brand new canoes and kayaks from the likes of Wavesport, Perception and Hou available for some genuinely great prices. We have a variety of crafts available for all levels of ability. For more information you can check out the short video below from Richard and Aaron, or alternatively pop in and see for yourself!
If you’re interested in any of the above craft, please don’t hesitate to give us a call on 01933 522 225, or call in to The Boathouse, where we have all of them in stock, ready to go, along with a nice range of paddles, buoyancy aids, C-Tug Trolleys, dry-bags and more.
And remember, if you’re considering hiring canoes with us for a trip in the Summer, it’s always worth remembering that many family groups benefit from permanent discounts on our “Bundled up”Short Break trips. Might be worth a look? Feel free to try out our brand new Trip Chooser or… be sure of being the first to know about our offers, just sign up using our “Newsletter” sign-in, or use our “Contact” form to send us your email. You can unsubscribe at any time, of course.
We’ve been really excited over the last few weeks getting ready for Christmas, bringing in lots of new lines and products to the Boathouse Shop.
One of the lines that certainly got a lot of people talking - both staff and customers - are these really useful line of utility tools from True Utility. The range is a really beautifully packaged line of multi-purpose tools that range from anything from waterproof capsules for storing money, to multi-tools and even tokens for shopping trollies!
All of the tools attach with a keyring and it would be very easy to build up a tool belt to make Batman jealous in no time! The thing we love about them is there are so many to choose from, we could easily find someone in the family for each of these tools!
Check out the video below for more info!
Pop in and see for yourself down at our Boathouse shop - we are open 7 days a week down here on Rushden Lakes - really hope to see you soon!
Ah Christmas is definitely in the air - we can hear the wafts of Christmas music making its way across the Boardwalk down here at the Boathouse and we could not be more excited!
Its our first Christmas running the shop and its really exciting getting to be part of peoples shopping trips and providing some (hopefully!) very well received gifts come the big day!
One of the things we are really excited to be stocking this year is our Gift Vouchers which continue to be really popular for even the most difficult to fill stocking. Lets be honest - everyone has an Uncle Pat or a pair of teenage nieces and nephews that can be really tricky to buy for.
Our gift vouchers though are a really a flexible option as they can be used in all kinds of different ways. They are available in denominations of £10, £20, £50 and £100 and have long expiry date on them so while we’re pretty sure people will want to get out at the first available opportunity - you dont have to!
The great thing about them is that they can be used against all of our paddles along the beautiful River Nene, on lake hire here at Rushden Lakes for our canoes, kayaks and swan pedalos and you can even use them against items in our boathouse shop!
On the subject of which - we will be showcasing lots of new products available in the shop over the coming weeks so keep your eyes peeled here for all kinds of great christmas ideas… In the meantime the vouchers are available to buy both in the shop here at Rushden Lakes and also online by clicking here.
Well this week has seen us getting firmly into the Christmas spirit down here on the boardwalk as we start getting the Boathouse shop ready for the festive season.
If we are honest - we would definitely say that canoeing season is the most wonderful time of the year - but Christmas definitely runs it close! Not only have we spent some time this week starting to decorate the windows and the inside of the shop (as you can see from the photo above) but we also spent some time over on the Facebook page starting to collate our Christmas playlist (feel free to head on over and contribute your festive faves to the list!)
Finally on Wednesday, we spent some time in front of the camera, filming a whole series of little clips showcasing some of the amazing products we’ve been getting stocked up on in the shop ready for Christmas.
The shop has been a completely new experience for all of us at Canoe Two and we’ve had a lot of fun trialling loads of new products for you guys - everything from hats and clothing, really useful little multi-tools and torches (perfect for someones stocking!) right up to our canoes and paddles.
The thing we are most excited about is our new Gift Vouchers which now come in a gorgeous gift box that are all hand assembled lovingly by our very own Sarah Jayne. The gift vouchers are a really flexible present as they last for two years and can be used against our river trips, lake hire or even the products available in the shop.
You can see a little sneak preview of whats instore below with a quick walk-around tour of the shop from one of our co-founders, Ian.
In the meantime - we will look forward to welcoming you down to the shop at Rushden Lakes very soon - the shop is open 7 days a week from 10am in the morning (9am weekends)!
Well - as the photo suggests - the sun has now sadly gone down on another season for the team at Canoe 2 here. This weekend saw the last canoes and swans out on the lake here at Rushden Lakes as the water will now be closed until April 2018. Rest assured - we are already counting down the days!
With this in mind it felt like a great opportunity to thank everyone who has been a part of our journey this summer. We’ve alluded to it before on the blog here but the thing that has made all of the hard work that went into our move to Rushden Lakes has been being a part of the lives of so many new people who came and saw us and got out on the water with us.
Thank you to all of you - and we can’t wait to welcome you back in the spring!
In the meantime - our Boathouse Shop is open from ten each day down at Rushden Lakes. We are currently gearing up for christmas at the moment (which you can read all about here) and of course we will be sharing lots of information with you over the coming weeks about the amazing lines and products we are now stocking in the shop.
In the meantime - feel free to connect with us all over social media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and more) over at ‘canoe two’ on all of the platforms!
Gift Vouchers Now Available in the Shop and Online!
Well we had a super frustrating weekend down on the Lake as the inclement weather and high winds that lingered from our friend Hurricane Brian, forced us off the water here at Rushden Lakes both days.
At the moment we are planning to be out on the water again this weekend as usual from ten am, keep an eye on our social media feeds for up to date information on availability.
In the meantime our eyes are turning towards Christmas down in the boathouse. Not only are we busy stocking the shelves with a range of new lines and products for the festive season but we are also really excited to tell you all about our range of Gift Vouchers that will be available from the shop as well.
Our gift vouchers start in denominations as low as £10 and can be used against anything from our short breaks and river trips, to lake hire and even accessories and merchandise in the Lakehouse shop.
You can find all the info on our gift vouchers that you need here or why not pop in and see us in the Boathouse shop. We’re open from ten am every day between House of Fraser and the Wildlife Trust. Hope to see you soon!
Well, with a tinge of sadness, we pulled the curtain down on a fantastic season out on the River Nene this weekend with our last few voyages taking to the water for the year.
It’s been another incredible year out on the river and while we’ve been really excited to launch our new offering up at Rushden Lakes and get the new shop open, its just as satisfying to see people returning to us for day trips and short breaks out on the Nene each summer as well.
While we are all eagerly looking forward to Spring rolling around again then as far as the canoes are concerned, there are still lots of things happening down at the Boathouse that we are very excited about.
The first thing to mention is that our 20% off 2018 bookings is currently still running - although not for much longer! The offer will be closed at 5pm on Friday October 20th so if you’ve been trying to organise dates to make a booking for the new year then nows your last chance to snag a bargain for next year!
The other thing we are officially on countdown to right now of course is Christmas! We’ve been very busy this last few weeks getting the Rushden chapter of Santas Elves to work stocking the Boathouse shop with all sorts of exciting new products and lines for the outdoorsy types in your lives!
The other thing we are really excited to be offering again in the shop this year is our popular gift vouchers as well. These vouchers are available in denominations as low as £10 and can be used against a range of activities - not only our short breaks and river trips, but also lake hire of our swans, canoes and kayaks and even against merchandise and accessories in the shop.
We all have a nightmare name on our christmas list and we like to think our gift vouchers are a perfect option for just such a person!
Pop in and see us on the boardwalk or click here (link) to find out how to buy gift vouchers.
Alas - as with summer. easter eggs and quality fantasy based television; sometimes even the best things have to come to an end. So it is then, that with the shadows lengthening across the boardwalk ever longer each afternoon; the end of the 2017 season is fast approaching.
This weekend coming will see our very last trips departing out on the River for this year with our Thrapston to Oundle paddle being a favourite Autumn stretch at this time of the year (a video of which can be found below). Theres still time to get out on the River this year - just give us a call on 01933 522223 to book!
We are continuing to offer canoe and kayak hire (as well as our trusty swans and katakanus ) every weekend until the end of October (at which point access to the lake might be a little more variable depending on the weather). No booking is required to get out on the lake - just pop down and see us in the boardwalk shop.
Its not all wintery doom and gloom at the Boathouse though right now, as we are currently carving out every last ounce of sunshine that we can this week by extending not one but two of our current special offers…
Firstly our Pre-paddled sale continues with the last few canoes and kayaks still up for grabs for an absolute bargain. Pop in and see us to see how you can get your hands on a craft with just 2 or 3 months on the water! And finally due to extraordinary popular demand, we have taken the decision to extend our 20% off offer on bookings for the 2018 season. Its really exciting to see people starting to book their trips with us for next year already so click over here to find out how to snag a bargain and get something in the diary to look forward to all at the same time!
Wow we had such a lot of fun this weekend meetings lots of new visitors as people flocked to Rushden Lakes for the properties official launch weekend!
As you might have noted from our social media feeds, there was loads going on around the park including an outdoor cinema outside on the Boardwalk which proved to be very popular weekend long - indeed we had a few requests for lunch breaks around the time Ghostbusters started up!
Having had such a great time, we have decided to extend the good times just a little bit longer and continue our 20% sale in the Boathouse shop through the rest of this week. That means all of our accessories and merchandise (aside from canoes and kayaks) are all 20% off until Sunday 8th October.
Of course if you are interested in canoes or kayaks then you might perhaps be more interested in our Pre-Paddled Sale which is also continuing this week until Sunday. There are still a number of craft available - full details can be found over here.
We run this promotion every year at the end of each season as a way of freshening up our fleet of crafts out on the river and out on the lake here at Rushden Lakes. Its something of a win-win situation really - some of our keener visitors can get their hands on a great starter canoe at a bargain, and we take the opportunity to bring in some brand new craft onto the water ready for the next season.
This year we have a bumper selection of craft up for grabs including both canoes and sit-on-top kayaks. The craft includetwo & three-seat Old Town Discovery canoesand a selection of sit-on-top kayaks such as WaveSport Scooters and Scooter Geminis. The sit-on-tops have literally had a couple of months use on our lake so there are definitely many a bargain to be had.
We will publish a full list of the details and how to get involved later in the week when we officially launch the Pre-Paddle Sale so keep an eye on our social media feed for details when they are announced.
For now - we hope to see you down here later in the week for the launch festivities.
Well with Autumn definitely in full swing (we’ve had some deliciously misty afternoons over the lake this week!) we thought we would start the week with a couple of reasons that we think there is definitely reason to be cheerful!
The first reason is that this weekend (30th Sept / 1st Oct) is the official launch weekend for the Rushden Lakes development. While the site has been open for a little while, this weekend will be an official launch with all kinds of activities across the weekend planned for visitors including fashion shows and an outdoor cinema showing films on the Boardwalk all weekend!
We are very happy to be getting into the spirit of the weekend by offering 20% off all canoeing/boating accessories in the shop (not our Canoes and Kayaks) in our Boathouse shop to visitors coming to make a start on their christmas shopping. In addition the first two canoes, kayaks and swans each morning will paddle on the lake FOR FREE! So be sure to head down to the Boardwalk early to get out onto the water, we open on the lake at 10.00am each weekend day.
The second reason to be very cheerful is that while summer is over, Autumn is the perfect time for making plans for 2018 - and with this in mind we are currently running a special offer on all of our advance 2018 bookings! You can find full details of the offer here and get inspiration for your adventure with our online trip chooser!
The final reason to be cheerful is that we will shortly be launching our annual end of season canoe sale! We run this promotion every year to offer pre-paddled canoes at excellent prices for those thinking of perhaps getting into the water a little more regularly. We have a number of crafts and sizes available so keep your eyes peeled on the blog and our social media channels later in the week for full details of the sale and how to get involved!
Moving forward from this point, our store down on the waterfront will now be open from 10am each day until 4pm. We are open every day and the lake remains open for the time being at weekends as well.
We hope you will pop in and see us down here at the Lakes as you all begin your Christmas shopping excursions for the year - we carry lines from the likes of Baltic, Grey Owl and many more - perfect for the canoe-r, kayaker or outdoorsy type in your life! We are down on the boardwalk right next to House of Fraser and the Wildlife Trust!
Too long!! I have worked part-time with Richard and Ian since their second season at Ditchford Lock, so I have seen them grow and progress throughout the years - the development that they have put in to Canoe2 is quite unbelievable, when you look back at the 2 shipping containers and a Landrover which they started with, to the fabulous Boathouse centre we have today its quite staggering!!
What did you do before joining the team?:
After leaving college in the late 90’s I worked in and around the outdoor industry for several years, before deciding that I could earn more money in other industries.
Since 2001 I have been involved with specialist removals and the transport industry. Moving anything from fine arts, antiques and pianos, to multi million pound house removals for the rich and famous all over the world. Driving everything from vans to Class 1 HGV’s and everything in-between!! It was a varied and exciting job exploring various countries along the way, and meeting a wide variety of people.
The places I have visited and the people I have met and worked alongside over the years has been inspirational and a period of time I will not forget. Moving Canoes, people and baggage is relatively simple in comparison to lifting a piano up 10 flights of stairs!!
I have also worked in the farming industry on and off for the last couple of years, doing everything from looking after grain stores to driving tractors and other large machinery. Big boys toys are a passion and a hobby, everything from big lorries to big diggers and anything in-between. I had a keen interest in off road driving for some years but it got a little expensive as Land Rovers tend to break quite often!!
I live on a small holding and run a caravan site, caravan storage centre and a livery yard for horses. So when I have chance to get a day off from here at Canoe2, I’m never truly not working!!
What do you doday-to-day at Canoe2?:
I worked most of last season part-time and following on from that was asked to head up the offsite team this year full-time. It’s been a challenging time with the move to Rushden Lakes, and we now have a updated system in place to be able to control the flow of river craft, people and baggage along our routes.
I spend a lot of time at a computer planning schedules, ordering minibuses, filing and ensuring all of our equipment is kept updated and maintained, but I prefer it when I am interacting with our clients, whether that is here onsite at Rushden Lakes or out and about along the Nene Valley.
What’s your favourite thing about your job?:
Interacting with the clients when they have finished their journey!! Being part of the stories and adventure they have experienced with us is quite special.
Well - would you believe we’re somehow at the end of the Summer Holiday already? Our first summer down here on the Boardwalk at Rushden Lakes has been a whirlwind of new faces and friends as people have come through our new shop and out onto the water on our fleet of canoes and swans.
Now that the summer is drawing to a close however we thought it would be useful to draw your attention to our updated opening and boating times which are changing slightly now in September…
The first thing to note is that we are still open for hire on the lake here at Rushden Lakes although now mainly at the weekends (weather permitting obviously!). Weekdays are
possible, but be sure to call first. Our boathouse shop will be open for visitors from 9.00am, with hire from 10.00am and all of our canoes, kayaks and swans are available with no booking necessary.
A great alternative to the lake, is our “paddle-out-and-back” trips, enabling you to head out and explore the River Nene from our base here at Rushden. With options from just 2-hours, to a full day, these remain available 7 days a week until the end of September.
And our fabulous comfy camping short breaks, staying in The Tipi and Bell tents at Barnwell are still available until the 17th of September. The availability of the Yurt at Barnwell has been extended a little longer - through until the end of September - as the Yurt features the luxury of a wood burning stove to keep nice and toasty a little longer into the Autumn!
The perfect trip to take advantage of a nice cosy night in our comfy camping, would be our 2 day trip between Thrapston and Fotheringhay which features a night stopover in Barnwell. You can find that trip (and many others for some inspiration for 2018!) over on our online Trip Chooser over on the website.
And if camping isn’t your thing, you’ll find some fabulous B&B options too. In the meantime - give us a call in the boathouse to bag a fantastic end of season trip - 01933 522 223
In the meantime, our shop down on the Boardwalk will be open all through the winter, 7 days a week, where you can find all kinds of lines from Baltic, Grey Owl and many more.
It’s been a super exciting few weeks down here at The Boathouse as hundreds of folks have taken the opportunity to get out on the water during the summer holidays. The sunshine has certainly kept our swans nice and busy and it’s been wonderful meeting so many new people every day.
We are also very proud to announce that our new website for The Boathouse venue has now gone live as well over at theboathouse.org.uk.
You see - in addition to housing the Canoe Two office and our brand new shop - The Boathouse also contains a number of other brand new facilities for our visitors to make use of including dedicated meeting room (with high-speed internet), kitchen facilities and even changing and showering areas as well.
These facilities are an important part of our new venture down here at Rushden Lakes as they are here for the local community to use and take advantage of; our role as “Custodians of the Lake” means we work closely with local groups including the Scouts and Sea Cadets to help groups of young people get out onto the water.
The meeting room is also proving to be a very popular facility with local businesses, charities and community groups already making use of the facilities for their meetings and events. Our hope is that over time - the stunning setting and brand new building will help us to grow a really interesting local corner of the Nene Valley community.
To find out more about the space and how to book the facilities, please visit our new website at theboathouse.org.uk
This week on our recurring Meet the Team feature, we’re shining the spotlight on our wonderful customer advisor Sarah-Jane…
Title: Customer Advisor
How long have you worked at Canoe2?: I’ve been here since April this year.
What did you do before joining the team?: I actually worked for 32 years within the courts service - in various roles really from section manager to various admin and financial roles. I worked within criminal court, family court - a real variety day to day. I really enjoyed it - I actually found it a really rewarding place to work!
What do you do day-to-day at Canoe2?: Day to day I have a really enjoyable role - I mainly work in assisting and advising customers, getting bookings made, helping people find the right trip or information - a real mixture! Of course now we are in the shop people are in all the time and so its a lot more varied now as you never know what the next question will be - its really fun getting to meet customers face to face though!
Whats your favourite thing about your job?: I think its that interaction with the customers really… That and being part of such a great team! Richard and Ian really look after us all here so well and really appreciate the work that we do. At the same time Richard and Ian know I have a lot of experience and management experience so its been really nice being able to support those two by giving a little extra here and there as the team grows - especially n the financial side - I love a challenge!
How are you in a canoe?!: Excellent! When we started, we did a big team paddle from Hardwater to Rushden Lakes and went up in teams… Well I’m a little competitive so we ended up doing the best part of 5 miles in a couple of hours! I do really enjoy getting out the water!
Well we are still on a high following last weeks breathless launch down here at the Boathouse! After an extremely busy last few days it was really exciting to open the doors on Friday morning and welcome our first visitors to the shop and out onto the lake.
Visitors seem to be pouring into Rushden Lakes so far and we’ve loved making lots of new friends as people make their way along the boardwalk; exploring the landscape around the lake that makes up the focal point of the site.
Before it became ‘old news’ then we thought we would share a short video with you of some of the highlights of our launch evening last week. Dont forget you can also find photographs and more over on our Facebook page.
In the meantime with the summer holidays in full swing, we hope that we will see some more of you down at Rushden Lakes and out on the water as the summer progresses.
After many months of work we are incredibly excited to be gearing up for the public unveiling of our new Boathouse and shop down on the new Rushden Lakes development here in Rushden. Its certainly been a frantic few weeks as we’ve been busy training our new staff, stocking the shelves of our new shop and finishing up our to-do lists ready for the grand unveiling today (July 28th).
Last week we were treated to a fabulous stakeholder event by the managers of the property and enjoyed a lovely evening in the sunshine (including a fashion show of summer lines from our new neighbours at Primark) and this week - after a couple of days final training and practise serving test customers in the shop and out on the lake - all eyes have been on our launch party which took place on Tuesday evening.
After an unbelievable effort from the whole team here at Canoe Two, the Boathouse looked incredible and the sunshine even arrived on time as well to provide the perfect backdrop to the evening. It was a very proud moment to welcome so many important colleagues, friends and families to our new surroundings and join us in celebrating the next exciting chapter in our story.
The facility was officially opened by Chair of East Northamptonshire Council Colin Wright who cut the ribbon to the pontoon after a few supportive words and it was a fitting finale to the evening; watching our guests take to the water to enjoy a paddle in the evening sunshine.
You can find a number of photos and videos from the evening over on our Facebook page, and in the meantime don’t forget you can come and visit us in person right now, down at Rushden Lakes (opposite Waitrose on the A45) - we can’t wait to show you around!
Well its been a frantic couple of weeks here at Canoe Two as we gear up for the launch of our exciting new home down on Rushden Lakes!.
The Rushden Lakes property opens in late July to the public and we can’t wait to meet lots of new faces as people come down to check out the park. Our new boathouse is a fantastic new building (which we will share full details and videos of shortly) which will include a shop, showers, a meeting room and of course - hire of our kayaks, canoes and pedalos out on the water.
We are sure our two new swans (pictured) will certainly be popular with younger visitors, but we really hope that people of all ages find something of interest in our awesome new building!
In other exciting news - you may have missed it, but we were recently featured on the BBC Countryfile show as part of the amazing work being undertaken by the Wildlife Trust here on the new Rushen Lakes site. The wildlife trust occupy the building next door to ours on the site and so when the team needed some canoes we happened to be on hand! IT was really fun working with presenter Anita and the team during the course of the shoot. We were of course very proud to see the resulting footage with our brand new canoe and boathouse looking stunning!
If you missed the show at the time you can and you can find out more information about the excellent work done by our friends at the Wildlife Trust by .
In the meantime, we have had a fantastically busy July as we sent record numbers of people off onto the water. We can’t wait to welcome some new friends as we move into August! If you are looking for something to do with the kids through the summer holidays then why not check out our online trip chooser. This tool will help you find the perfect voyage for you and your little crew; We have trips ranging from a couple of hours, up to multi-day stays in some of our stunning comfy camping venues, with most trips being perfect for complete novices!