Evening Sea Kayaking from Dochgarroch


Evening Sea Kayaking trip meeting at Dochgarroch, heading out on to Loch Dochfour/Loch Ness.

Meeting at Dochgarroch Locks, we issue a suitably sized personal buoyancy aid, spray deck, and paddle to everyone. After a short safety briefing, we launch onto the Caledonian Canal and head off on a mini-adventure. As we paddling along the canal, skills are practiced on route to Loch Dochfour. Once at Loch Dochfour we explore the loch before and continue on up the Great Glen out onto Loch Ness. Here we offer the group an opportunity to land on Lochend beach to stretch their legs and have a tea break. There will be lots of time for photos and Nessie spotting along the way. The way back is always much quicker with your newly acquired paddling skills.

Should winds not allow the alternative option of launching below Dochgarroch Locks and paddle on the Caledonian Canal between Dochgarroch and Inverness.

We supply:

  • tandem sea kayaks
  • a personal buoyancy aid (PFD) and a kayak paddle
  • a small dry bag per person (if required)
  • approx 2.5-3 hours paddling on the water
  • copies of photos taken during the trip

What you need to bring: When paddling, you should expect to be splashed a little from boat spray and drips from the paddle. The weather can also change rapidly out on the sea so its best to be prepared for the worst. Please bring suitable outdoor clothing to keep you warm for the four-hour trip outdoors in the Scottish Highlands.

Essential Items:

  • a waterproof jacket and waterproof over trousers (recommended)
  • leggings or outdoor trousers/baselayer/fleece jumper
  • a hat/ cap to keep your head warm
  • old light footwear/trainers that you don't mind getting wet at launching/landing

We recommend also bringing along;

  • water or juice and a small snack (EH currently due to COVID-19 are NOT supplying drinks and snacks for paddlers)
  • any medication you may require
  • towel & complete change of clothes for afterward - can be taken or left in your car!
  • suntan lotion is also a good call for those sunny days.

Jeans and hiking boats are NOT suitable for watersports and kayaking.

Group Size: Max 2 households of up to 7x paddlers (Group size reduced to enable social distancing and greater safety).

Age: This trip is suitable for adults or families (minimum 14-year-old). 14-17 year olds require to be accompanied on one adult to one basis.

Meeting Time: 6.00pm. Please arrive early to ensure you can get parked ok and are in time for the safety briefing and kit issue.

Meet Location: Dochgaroch Locks, Dochgarroch, by Inverness. IV3 8JG. We meet on the towpath by the three yellow bollards at the Loch Ness side of Dochgarroch Locks/30 min short-term parking area opposite the An Talla.

Google Map link - https://goo.gl/maps/VTZJhZgnt8H2

Request a Lift: During COVID-19, alas no transport options are available.

Finish Time: Approx 9.30pm

Distance: Approx. paddling distance 4-5 miles (8km)

Craft: Tandem sea kayaks. Due to us using tandem kayaks and that even although in the outdoors, we are accepting pair bookings from couples, friends, or parent & child from the same household. This is simply because the tandem kayak seats are 1.5 m apart, which is less than the current social distancing requirement. As restrictions are relaxed, we will happily accept individual bookings.

2x Adults - Only £70 (Normally £100, but discounted during phase 2 for locals)

1x Parent & 1x Child 14-17 year old - Only £65 (Normally £90, but discounted during phase 2 for locals)

Solo bookings are currently only being accepted with river kayaking and stand up paddling trips as these are solo craft.

Weather: Should the weather (wind/waves) be unsuitable to paddle out on Loch Dochfour/Loch Ness on the day, we may have to relocate to paddle only on the Caledonian Canal stretch between Dochgarroch and Inverness. Should both venues look unsuitable for an enjoyable relaxed paddle, we will postpone the trip and arrange to rebook for a future date.

Personal Belongings: Cameras, phones, car keys, and other personal belongings are taken out onto the water at your own risk. If in doubt, please leave these items in your car when out on the water

COVID-19 Safety Precautions: A number of precautions are being put in place to ensure safety for all attending.

  • All participants are attending on the basis they are NOT suffering from any COVID-19 symptoms, have NOT knowingly been in contact with anyone suffering from COVID-19 symptoms within the last 14 days, and are fit, healthy and happy to participate,
  • Should any booked participant discover they have developed any COVID-19 symptoms, participants are asked to contact Explore Highland and notify at the earliest opportunity. As a local, your activity booking will be postponed and welcome you back to participate when you are well and out of the recommended 7-14 days quarantine process,
  • We ask all participants to respect social distancing and assist in everyone's safety,
  • No shuttle transport option currently available and Explore Highland will meet groups locally in the great outdoors,
  • Social distancing maintained including virtual handshakes and afraid we will NOT be supplying added extras including hot drinks and cakes etc.,
  • Alcohol-based hand sanitizer available for regular application for all,
  • Pre & post-cleaning of all craft and kit including a 72 hour resting of all kit used,
  • Additional safety briefing to explain self-rescue and ensuring no sharing equipment,
  • Coach/guide will use disposable gloves when issuing clean kit or returning at end of session, plus if needing help carrying the craft to the water,
  • Tandem craft trip bookings are taken from the same household only (couples, friends, parent & child),
  • Usual group photos will be taken using social distancing and same household photos option also offered,
  • Should there be any more best practice advice issued, we will ensure to add to this list to further promote safe paddling for all.

Terms & Conditions: Terms and conditions can be found online at - www.explorehighland.com/terms-conditions/

We are sorry but registration for this event is now closed.

Please contact us if you would like to know if spaces are still available.