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Scottish Rock & Water

Kingussie, United Kingdom
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About Scottish Rock & Water
Our aim here at Scottish Rock & Water is to provide you with a world class experience and memories that, we hope, will make your eyes sparkle and your grin grow. Whether it’s scrambling above the clouds on the airy peaks of Skye, paddling into the majestic expanse of Knoydart to conquer some remote Munros, or descending The River Spey and having a cheeky dram at one of over 50 distilleries along the way. Our passion is in sharing our knowledge and helping you discover for yourself just how much adventure and beauty Scotland has to offer, after all, “though she be little, she is fierce!” ​
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Scottish Rock & Water
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thehollieivy wrote a review Dec 2020
Inverness, United Kingdom5 contributions1 helpful vote
Stephen is a really great instructor. We did a 2-day winter skills course and came away a lot more confident to safely explore the mountains in winter. Super educational and excellent fun. 10/10 would recommend to anyone wanting to do more winter walking.
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Date of experience: December 2020
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Yvonne W wrote a review Oct 2020
2 contributions
We were extremely fortunate to find an outfit that was prepared to guide us down the Spey so late in the season, at short notice and in the middle of the pandemic. With a minimum of only 2 paddlers needed to run a trip, there is a good chance of arranging something that suits ones circumstances. From the outset, through phone calls, emails and the website, arrangements were informative and reassuring with every detail covered. As it turned out, we travelled to Scotland from Norfolk on the wettest day on UK records! Consequently, the Spey was in spate when we arrived. Fortunately, with a spare day in hand, levels had dropped enough for the start of the trip to go ahead but nevertheless, the river was running high and fast (faster than anything we had ever encountered before in an open canoe), which presented a unique set of challenges for us to tackle. We soon realised how "tame" our local waterways are in comparison to the Spey but this was precisely our intention - to get some exposure to fast flowing water and rapids and to gain some experience in starting to learn to read the river itself. The Spey did not disappoint in that regard and it would be an understatement to admit that we were frequently out of my (our) comfort zone(s)! However, again from the outset, Stephen provided constant reassurance and advice, expertly guiding us through the trickier sections. Without making a big thing of it, you could see that he was constantly and quietly assessing and reassessing the river and us from a safety perspective and relaying technical tips and snippets of advice on the way. He was incredibly patient with a methodical teaching style that instilled confidence . Paddling demonstrations were often accompanied by an explanation of the thought processes/theories behind them which enhanced understanding and helped them to become embedded. We had plenty of opportunities to practise some of the new techniques and to develop a degree of self reliance by leading the way on occasions (closely followed by Stephen’s canoe!), useful for learning to read the conditions and select a favourable route through. We shared Stephen’s respect for the water. The trip was a timely reminder to us to do so at all times. An added bonus was the stunning riverside scenery and the backdrop of the Cairngorms in the earlier stages. The weather was also kind after the weekend deluge. WSR supplied all the canoeing and camping equipment which was of high spec and in good working order. We picked up some recommendations for our own set up at home and advice for enhancing safety on forthcoming trips. Campsites were all designated sites along the river. They were basic but perfectly adequate. At that time of year, we thankfully escaped midge attacks. We ate like royalty. We had fresh food each day and plenty of it to satisfy appetites boosted by a day’s paddling. The homemade flapjacks were to die for! After we all parted company, Stephen followed up with an overview, summarising all that we had covered – again very useful for consolidating all that we had learnt. He also sent us photos/video footage taken en route by him which compensated for us forgetting to put a memory card in our waterproof camera! Now, we need to practise. We clearly still have a lot to learn. All in all, a great trip – great experience, great guidance, great company and a privilege to have shared such a great river. The perfect antidote for Covid! We wholeheartedly recommend SRW and Stephen and feel inspired by his passion for the great outdoors. He has an impressive “office”. Thankyou so much SRW. Much appreciated. Till next time....
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Date of experience: October 2020
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Response from The_SRW_Team, Owner at Scottish Rock & Water
Responded 17 Nov 2020
Hi Yvonne & John, This made me very happy to read, you guys seemed to have a very special trip on arguably the best touring river in the UK. And I'm glad that you felt your skills improve both technically and tactically in a very dynamic environment. I hope the trip has inspired you guys to finish your book and continue exploring from the canoe across the waterways of the UK and beyond. As always, always happy to help with any advice in the future. Best wishes Stephen
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Iona B wrote a review Oct 2020
Glasgow, United Kingdom3 contributions
I had a brilliant week. Josh is a great instructor and gave us a great grounding in lead climbing well and safely. Josh took us to a variety of different locations, managing to make the best of the weather. Stephen was very helpful in matching me up with another solo traveller so that the course could run. The whole week was really fun and I definitely would recommend. Thanks guys!
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Date of experience: October 2020
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Response from The_SRW_Team, Owner at Scottish Rock & Water
Responded 29 Oct 2020
Hi Iona, Thank you for your wonderful words! Josh said you guys had a great time and managed with the testing weather. I hope that you enjoy your new adventures and feel safe in the knowledge gained over the 5 days with Josh. As always, drop me a message anytime if you have any questions or need any help Take care and best wishes Stephen
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Orienteer4356 wrote a review Oct 2020
2 contributions
Stephen's lead climbing course gave my daughter and I the confidence to climb outside on our own, which we have now done. Success! He was also great company.
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Date of experience: September 2020
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Response from The_SRW_Team, Owner at Scottish Rock & Water
Responded 29 Oct 2020
Hi Alan, I'm glad that you and Lydia have managed out to explore some local venues and feel that the course met your expectations. It was a real pleasure to spend the day with you guys soaking up every last once of information and getting on the sharp end with confidence! If you ever have any questions or if I can be of any further help, drop me an email anytime Take care and best wishes Stephen
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Alfred wrote a review Oct 2020
2 contributions
My son and I hiked up one peak at Quinaig in the Assynt with Will Manners as leader. It was a great day out and perfect weather, with splendid views. Exhilarating, in summary. Actually Will and the lad went up a second peak while I headed back (spirit willing, flesh weak). Will was a fine leader, pointing out features and chatting with both of us on a range of topics. If, like me, you aren't too sure about your capabilities with this sort of thing then Quinaig would seems a good choice, offering a number of options for hiking while being quite exciting, and the approach to Quinag is quick and easy. I'd recommend Rock and Water to ensure all goes well, safely, and enjoyably.
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Date of experience: September 2020
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Response from The_SRW_Team, Owner at Scottish Rock & Water
Responded 19 Oct 2020
Hi Alfred, Sounds like a great day in one of the most inspiring regions of Scotland. Will said he had a great day with you guys. I hope you enjoyed the remainder of your holiday. Take care and best wishes Stephen
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