Moving in harmony with the river.
There is something deeply satisfying about fitting-in: seeing, yet not being seen or blending so well that one becomes part of the environment and not a visitor. A coracle does this almost by default. Its hull does not vibrate with resonating hard sounds; its lines do not catch the eye as harsh, overly straight or contrasting..
Sudden movements and a turbulent wake are essentially impossible- the rhythm of the boat is dictated by the body of water upon which it rides. A coracle floats and glides, it can be hooked into eddies and slack water with little effort and looks and feels like living history, like it belongs.
Coracles have their own backpack built in and do not snag-up on portages. They leave both hands free to carry other gear- such as fishing tackle, camping equipment or a good book. With little maintenance and easily found materials, the coracle is perhaps the most perfect balance of practicality, sustainability, history and contentment possible, a delight to warm anyone’s life and whisper to them of adventure.
Not only is the design meant to be carried but its shallow draught allows access to marshes and estuaries where most other craft would ground. This opens up fantastic opportunities to explore, to fish, to hunt, forage and observe the life of a river or chase the increasingly rare and ephemeral face of tranquility.
With a coracle, the pride comes from an ancient place of practicality and self-awareness that no amount of chrome, horsepower or go-faster stripes can compete with or tarnish. Buying one is almost unheard of as they are almost always made and used by the same person, a person who thinks perfectly well of themselves just the way they are without need for compensation.
A coracle is complete, it is fun, it is cool in a way that few other watercraft even attempt to be and it is easily made by anyone who is willing to put in the effort to learn how.
The course will cover the following topics:
- History of the Coracle
- Coracles In Use Around The World
- Historic and Modern Adaptations Of An Ancient Boat
- Limitations of The Design
- Identification of Suitable Natural Materials
- Staying Safe At The Coracle Building Workshop
- How to Make a Coracle
- Seat Construction
- Attaching Gunwales
- Forming a Frame
- Applying A Textile
- Waterproofing A Textile
- Finishing Touches
- Carving a Paddle
- Considerations for Storage
- Transporting a Coracle
- Making Simple Repairs to Your Boat
- Demonstration: Paddling and Manoeuvring A Coracle
- Maiden Voyages and Practice Paddling In Shallow Water
Physical Requirement: You Must Be Able to Swim 15m in a Life Jacket PFD
- You must be over 18 years of age to attend this course unaccompanied.
- Anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
- This course is not suitable for young people under the age of twelve.
- Each place booked is for one boat only. However, individuals, couples or small groups of three may work together on a boat. If you are planning to enrol as a team, please contact the Head Office so we can send you an appropriate booking package.
During the day, we will provide fresh fruit, cookies, drinking water, tea and coffee.
Participants must bring their own bag lunch and any personal snacks. We will take two, 15 minute Coffee Breaks and one, 30 minute Lunch Break during the course of the day. Please plan ahead and arrive fully prepared, as the nearest stores may not be attainable.
You are welcome to make or buy your own gear. Although we would like to encourage you to be as self-reliant as possible, all gear used by students in the course must meet the safety standards of the Quartermaster. In some cases, it may be wise to contact the Quartermaster if you have any questions or doubts about gear crafting projects you would like to undertake in preparation or if you would like to make substitutions to the items listed on the Watercraft Kit List.
We will try to help supply you with used gear for rent if you are unable to find, borrow or purchase gear for the course. To ensure a selection and availability of the items you require, please submit the Watercraft Kit List to the Quartermaster at least two weeks prior to the start of the course.
Course Schedules and Specifications:
The DIY Coracle Boat Building Workshop is offered several times a year, in different conditions, seasons and locations in Canada. Check the list below and read the specifications carefully to make sure that you are signing up for the right course.
DIYC 05/21/22 • DIY Coracle Boat Building Workshop (3 Days) • Timeless Journey Boat Building Workshop • $350.00
Course Dates: Saturday, May 21, 2022 to Monday, May 23, 2022
- Start Time: 9:00 am on Saturday, May 21, 2022
- End Time: 5:00 pm on Monday, May 23, 2022
Registration Deadline: Thursday, May 5, 2022 at 6:00 pm
Location: Timeless Journey Boat Building Workshop
- Instructor: Leo Stephens
- Hospitality: Carmen Lazzarotto