Cass and Andrew Stoodley, Roof Rack City, Adelaide Canoe Works, Waikerie Hotel, Lake Bonney Caravan Park
Paddlesports SA, Kingston on Murray Caravan Park,.
Canoe Innovations, Oxford Antiques, Moorook General Store, Waikerie Caravan Park,
The Marathon Canoe Club of South Australia Inc
2020 – 2021MCC Committee
President: Andrew Stoodley, Treasurer: Michael Arthur
Bob Phillips, Adele Bain and Ray Spargo
Well here we are again! The 33th year of the Riverland Paddling Marathon (RPM).
I would like to take this opportunity to welcome all Paddlers, Ground Crews, Volunteers, Sponsor’s & Supporters to Australia’s
Coolest Paddling Marathon. If your unclear why we call it that, you’re about to find out!
Whether you’re here for your Rookie Year or your 22nd (if anyone has done more please let me know), I’m sure you will agree
by the end of the weekend that an amazing job has been done by the Committee & Volunteers to make this event happen each year on a shoestring budget.
The RPM began when a group of paddlers thought it would be fun to paddle 208km over a long weekend stopping at campgrounds, with a pub/club nearby, evenly spaced along the way.
You can still camp at The Start, Martins Bend. Day 1 End, Day 2 Start, Moorook (Visit Moorook General Store). We are hoping the Campground at Day 2 End, Day 3 Start, Waikerie will be open again this year. & Try the Waikerie Hotel for an amazing dinner). But with the soft beds & warm showers available at Waikerie Hotel Motel, Waikerie
CV Park or Kingston-on-Murray CV Park available do you really want to rough it?
PADDLERS- the choices of events cater for all levels of paddlers on any river-worthy craft that can be paddled. Canoe, Kayak, Ski, SUP, Dragonboats. We even welcome surf Boats.
If you’re up for the M200, see you at the start, M200 Relay, did it last year with a few mates, or M100 with Brian, Pick a Craft & an Age Group & set about beating or setting a record. Our oldest Remaining Records are from 1989 but new Records are set &
others broken EVERY YEAR.
We also have the M35 & M50, over 3 days, & Single Day Event, for those who want to spend some time off the water?
You may have noticed that the committee of this race are paddlers also. 5 of the committee will be on the water with you all weekend. That leaves 2 on the shore, to do all the hard work, under the capable supervision of Volunteer Race Director Martin
Finn, if he wasn’t here we couldn’t be on the water having all the fun!
Martin, Ray & Adele don’t do all the work. Say G’day to all the Volunteers you see along the way as well, & there will be many more you won’t see that are keeping an eye on you from Safety Boats, the clifftops, or at registration, checkpoints & the finish
line. Many of these are from local Community Groups & many others travel from far & wide to assist.
We WILL have a race dinner at the Waikerie Club this year on the Sunday night where you can catch up with people you have met on the river.
PLEASE PLAN TO STAY at the finish line for Lions BBQ, Trophies & Orange Hat Awards before you hit the road. We will
start presentations within 10 mins of the last boat crossing the line & we don’t puff our chests up & waffle. We also draw the
raffle here with many great prizes & if your tickets not here you can’t win!
BUT remember this is a challenging event & your safety comes first so please listen to directions & check with the qualified
Medics if you have any issues with blisters or Health.
Remember, never paddle past someone in the water without checking that they are OK! We will give you your time corrections
but we can’t get to everyone that has a swim before the cold sets in.
Enjoy the Riverland!
Andrew Stoodley President Martin Finn Race Director
Welcome to the RPM200 Communications Team
While the main focus of this event is the paddlers, it does take a sizeable support team with a large variety of skills in order to help make your event run smoothly. One key aspect is communications. With so many paddlers on the water at once, spread out over up to 20-30km long stretches of the River Murray, it is vitally important that the organisers keep track of where people enter and leave the river, and that they have an efficient means of raising and coordinating help should it be required.
The Communications Network
With much of this section of the river bounded by high cliffs, covering the route with a communications network is no small feat. Mobile telephone coverage certainly isn’t continuous and so it falls back to specially designed and constructed radio networks in order to maintain continuous contact with all checkpoints and support vessels across the event.
To achieve this, the Marathon Canoe Club in 2015 has again approached the Amateur Radio Experimenters Group (AREG) in order to provide this vital communications coverage from the start in Berri through to the finish in Morgan. AREG, which is based in Adelaide, has in turn sought additional help from the Riverland Amateur Radio Club (RARC) in order to provide this network.
So who are the Amateur Radio Experimenters Group? We are a group of people all with a common interest in radio communications. Some members have backgrounds in professional radio communications and engineering, while others are students, retirees, farmers, security guards or work in manufacturing. We are all licensed Amateur Radio Operators (also known as ham radio operators) with qualifications, training, experience and equipment that allows us to communicate effectively over the challenging environment that is the River Murray. The volunteer amateur radio operators building and operating this network bring many years’ experience and often thousands of dollars’ worth of equipment to bear to make sure everyone stays in touch.
What does it mean to you?
For this event, you will find an Amateur Radio operator able to link any participant back to the race director via
the AREG communications centre on average every 10-15km along the river, as well as at the start and finish
of each major section of the event (the start of the 200, 100 and mini marathon each day as well as the finish
line). The communications centre also maintains contact with the surface support boats at all times as well as
the medics and race director.
Should you require assistance at any stage of the event, you can rest assured that if you pull up to one of the
radio checkpoints or stop and make contact with one of the support craft, that there is a radio network behind
them that will get your message through, not only to the race director but to your support crew as well (which is
why it is important that you provide support crew telephone contact details to the MCC prior to the event).
We are not hard to find either! Just look for the people wearing bright safety green shirts and for cars covered in
antennas carrying the AREG COMMS logo!
This sounds Interesting – Want to know more?
This event is just one aspect of the hobby of Amateur Radio. The members of AREG and RARC take part in a
host of other interesting activities as well throughout the year. Amateur Radio operators can for instance
communicate with the International Space Station, send digital pictures around the world without using the
Internet or telephone network, talk to stations in diverse and far flung corners of the planet via Shortwave Radio
(High Frequency Radio) or closer to home even run their own digital television stations – and this is but the tip of
the iceberg in what is a huge global hobby.
If you would like to learn more about amateur radio and what is going on behind the scenes at this event and
others, why not get in touch with AREG (in Adelaide), RARC (in the Riverland) or the Wireless Institute of
Australia (if you come from other parts of the country) who can put you in touch with your local radio club.
We get to design, build then use a complete communications network, so you get to paddle down the river.