Sustainability Code 3. Be Mindful of Nature

When we are paddling, we need to be mindful of nature. We may consider that we are outside of our normal habitat. We are journeying through many habitats. The coastal zone, rivers, riverbanks, riverbeds, islands, the sea.
As an activity, kayaking can be peaceful and unobtrusive. Have you ever noticed how birds often stay a little longer than expected when approached by a kayaker. Seals will observe you with curiosity allow you to come near them. They may even come and say hello. Basking sharks glide by and descend often circling around us. Dolphins come to play. Not so with jet skis, ribs, and power boats.
We are privileged as kayakers to visit remote places that others cannot easily access. When we are there, we need to be respectful and mindful that we are encroaching on a habitat that is not our own. We need to be conscious of our impact and make sure that we behave in a way that is respectful of our place in the environment.
We are also privileged to have the opportunity to be mindful in nature. When we are in nature, we feel more connected to the world around us. Nature is always changing, and evolving there is new life, birth, and constant change, just like our own lives.
The psychological and mental health benefits of being in nature are well documented in the scientific literature. As kayakers we have the added opportunity of being closer to nature by the very nature of our position in the sea or on rivers. Take some time whilst out on a trip to consider your place in nature.

  • Are you part of nature?
  • or separate from it?
  • Where do you fit?
  • What do you get from being in nature?
  • What benefits you most?

“We can never have enough of nature. We must be refreshed by the sight of inexhaustible vigour, vast and Titanic features, the sea-coast with its wrecks, the wilderness with its living and decaying trees, the thunder cloud, and the rain which lasts three weeks and produces freshets. We need to witness our own limits transgressed, and some life pasturing freely where we never wander”…… in wildness is the preservation of the world”.
- “Walden”Henry David Thoreau, (1854)