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Temple Steps

Last night was unseasonally mild and nine of us took to the river to paddle upstream against the ebbing tide.

Passing Tower Pier we were hailed by an RNLI lifeboat man and I stopped for a brief chat. He turned out to be a kayaker but confessed that he had not had his Nordkapp in the water for nine months, I suspect he was a little envious of our excursion.

Once we reached London Bridge we began to feel the full effect of the fast ebb and there was even a standing wave of about 40cm a little further up river, under the centre of Cannon Street railway bridge. I found a good paddling rhythm and made steady progress but I was ready for a breather by the time I reached the eddy behind Temple steps.

While we waited for the last members of the group a police launch passed on the other side of the fairway heading down river at speed, anticipating the wash and the clapotis from the wall that runs along the north bank of the river all along Kings Reach, we instinctively moved away from the steps. Our instincts were correct. The rebounding wake resulted in some very dramatic clapotis giving us a little entertainment before we headed back to Wapping.