I am Becka, I am currently a member of the GB Junior Women’s freestyle Kayaking squad and love wake boarding and kayaking. Just moments after receiving my A Level results, my boyfriend James and I set off on our 3 week long road trip around Europe.

My Summer Roadtrip!

On the 14th August, just moments after receiving my A Level result, my boyfriend James and I set off on our 3 week long road trip around Europe. Our ferry from Dover to Dunkirk was at 3.00am so when we arrived at Llangenfeld Wakepark, Germany the next day, we were exhausted! However, that didn’t stop us from spending the whole day wakeboarding on the four different lakes and cables at this particular park. Both James and I love the chilled out mind-set of the Germans and especially love their wakeparks because there is so much to do at them aside from just wakeboard.

Although the weather was rainy and quite miserable, the water was really warm so when I wasn’t wakeboarding, I spent my time jumping off the pontoons into the water and playing around with our new drift action camera. This resulted in some awesome videos and with the help of our ‘selfie stick’, I also managed to get some great action shots. However, the time went quickly and before we knew it we were moving on to our next destination- Plattling, Germany. Pushing aside the wakeboarding gear, we got out our boats and kit and jumped on the water to paddle the feature. I had an awesome time spinning and looping and practising side surfing out of the feature. Although it was raining and there were a lot of mosquitos, we met up with some friends out there and had a great time messing about and jumping off the wall into the moving water.

Although we wanted to stay at Plattling longer, the time was ticking by and everyone was mindful that the Freestyle Kayaking European Championships were in just 7 days time and everyone needed to start practising in the actual competition feature. After a dodgy 4 hour journey with no satnav, we finally arrived in Cunovo, Bratislava. As we arrived in the dark, the following morning we woke up and started to explore the area we would spend the next 10 days in. We realised that we were on an island in the middle of the Danube River and found out that the only other things on the island were a hotel and two white water courses. However, we didn’t let this dampen our spirits and we made the most of the activities that were to offer. Although I wasn’t competing, I had great fun paddling the slightly larger white water course and surfing the bottom wave with James. The weather was really warm here so we also went river surfing. This was fun until (like me) you fell off and scraped your entire body over sharp, jagged rocks only a few metres downstream of the wave!

On the 28th September, the Euros started. Although the opening ceremony was quite small and was in the dark, we all had fun meeting other athletes and talking about the upcoming few days. Everyone paddled exceptionally well and Slovakian local, Peter Csonka even made a new ICF record score of a 1800 point ride! Although I was only a spectator in this competition, the hot weather, great people and exiting competition made it a great event to be at. Team GB took home 5 medals in the end which was fantastic!

Aside from playing about in the water, swimming and kayaking, we also went into Bratislava to do some sightseeing with James’ parents. Unfortunately it was raining but we saw some beautiful architecture and really old buildings. That evening we packed up our tent, shoved everything in the car and hit the road for Prague; our next stop.

We arrived in Prague the following morning and I decided to hop on and paddle the white water course. I was a bit nervous for this as I was the only one on the water, had never paddled the course before and didn’t know how shallow the features were. However, I had awesome time surfing waves and spinning. It was quite a fast flowing course and quite intense but was great fun and I would definitely paddle it again. After this, however, we were both quite cold and as it was raining and we had both been camping for the last week, we decided to stay at a hotel for the night. This was a lovely luxurious break and it let us unwind and pamper ourselves before the final few days of our trip. We spent the next day in Prague city centre sightseeing and shopping. Although I love wakeboarding and kayaking, this was a nice little break for the both of us. This didn’t last long though and we were itching to get to our next stop to spend a few more days wakeboarding.

We set off from Prague and five hours later arrived at Turncable, another wakepark in a little German town called Tannhausen. This was the biggest and by far the coolest wakepark I had ever been to and although my shoulders were really aching, after exploring the site and meeting the staff that worked there, James and I both went on the clockwise cable. Although I have only just started wakeboarding, everytime I have ridden so far I had firsts; Turncable was no different. Despite my sore shoulders, I managed my first lap of a cable and carved around obstacles really easily. I was ecstatic- especially as after I dislocated my left shoulder and subluxed my right shoulder two years ago I was told I would never wakeboard again!

Two days later, we left Turncable and set out on our ten hour journey across Germany and France to Calais where we got the ferry. After another five hours we arrived in Surrey and unloaded the car. Although I had an awesome time away, I was glad to be home to see my family. However, within two days I was already planning what adventures I am going to get up to next summer but you will have to wait to find out about those!

It is great to have this opportunity from BOING to share my experiences as a young member of Team GB and I hope you will see more blogs in coming years as I get more experience and compete more at the outdoor sport that I love.

Becka

(All photos taken by Me or James)