Arriving at the hall just after 11 am, and running the course for 27 participants we had our work cut out for us. Between unpacking gear, getting set up, and people arriving there wasn’t much time spent relaxing.
After everything was set up and everyone had arrived, we got underway with our first theory session and then into some dry land throw bag practice to test out people’s power and accuracy before we moved into the dynamic white water. We headed down to Corra Linn on the North Esk where our practical sessions were taking place. Starting out with some river crossings, river swimming and live water throw bagging we soon warmed up in the cold water. After many rescued swimmers, we headed back to the hall for some dinner and more theory.
Saturday morning arrived and into the theory we dove, learning about river hydrology. After that was covered, we did some dry land foot entrapment rescues before lunch. Once again heading to Corra Linn after lunch for some practical time in the water. This time we had a crack at some harder river swimming, swimming over strainers and real-time foot entrapment rescues. Once everyone was feeling more confident in the white water we once again headed back, this time to do some dry land mechanical advantage systems for stuck rafts by the light of our head torches. Dinner was welcomed before another theory session followed by bed time.
Another early morning on Sunday, we learned about how to deal with stubborn kayaks that wedge themselves between rocks. This time we headed to the river before lunch where the instructors set up three stations. First was a tethered swim, second a tensioned diagonal rope used to cross a river and third was a raft wrapped around a rock with some stranded rafters. Using the knowledge we had learned over the previous days, we rotated through the stations and sorted out each situation with confidence.
Once we finished up in the water, we had lunch and our written assessment. Upon completion goodbyes and thanks were said to all involved, and another TasTAFE short course was successfully delivered.