Full version is 17mins 56secs long, and can be downloaded and streamed online.
It had been the driest summer ever on record in the UK; everything was parched and the soil was like dust. Eventually, in early September, the North of the UK got some rain. In fact, it got lots of rain in a short period of time, in the form of a series of thunderous torrential downbursts! Andrea reckoned it had been more than six months since she’d worn a pair of chest waders and the rapid rise in river levels, caused by the downbursts, gave her the perfect reason to do so now.
She put on a matching set of Realtree camouflage Lycra leggings and hoodie and over these she pulled her neoprene chest waders and a shooting jacket. It was still too warm to wear anything more heavyweight than this, but what she had on was perfect for what she had in mind. She drove back to ‘The Land that Time Forgot’ and although there were no pterodactyl calls this time, the river level was still perfect for wading and swimming.
Edging along the natural rock-step weir, the fast-flowing water and its spray soaked the outside of her waders and jacket from her head to her toes; inside this protective outer layer, however, she was still warm and dry. Leaning back on the weir, pushing against the flow, was a fantastic feeling; as was sitting sideways on a rock shelf with her boots in the air, and a torrent of water cascading over her.
As she slid on her bum in 2 feet of water, down the gently sloping rock shelves, she felt a trickle down the middle of her back inside her chest waders; soon she was sitting in a little warm puddle inside the neoprene. When she stood up, the puddle drained down the backs of her legs, ending-up inside the neoprene socks that she was wearing inside the waders. We all know that Andrea cannot resist ‘the point of no return’. And so it began: the gradual process of getting wetter and wetter, wading deeper and deeper, swimming more and more.
Having discarded the Gore-Tex shooting jacket because she was too hot, she soon needed to remove the waders too. She had to replace the waders with a pair of Barbour wellies because the rocks were sharp and uneven, but she’d come prepared and now she really felt free. The Lycra clothing was a joy to swim in – tight and light and very shiny in the sunshine; she even removed the hoodie to reveal the skin-tight black riding shirt that she had underneath, as it clung to her body.
On this occasion it was tiredness rather than the cold that brought her to the end of her escapade. Wading to the shore she picked-up her discarded items of clothing and jammed them into the waterproof caving bag that she had brought with her. It was time to head home. But what a brilliant reunion it had been with her chest waders and there was still the whole of Autumn, Winter and Spring to come. Lots of time for many more adventures. 😊