15-17 February 2024

Ernie Pearce Weir

Ernie Pearce Weir


Distance from start of the stage : 600m
Lat -29.613307 Lon 30.376643
Spectators/Seconds: Yes
Portage option:  Left hand bank

A purpose built fish chute which channels the flow of the river down a gently sloping set of steps. This an easy challenge that provides an early morning adrenaline rush and a great way to settle into your boat at the start of the day.  Take it straight and slowly, ready to turn right at the bottom as the river turns right. The front paddler in a K2 will go pretty deep under water, so get your paddles up high over the stopper wave at the bottom.
This obstacle should ideally be shot one boat at a time – the leaders often come to grief because they try to tackle it side by side.
As this comes right at the start of the race, most of the batches are happy to race to the weir and then sit in the queue, enjoy the banter from the other paddlers in your batch, and wait your turn.
There is sometimes an official standing at the top of the weir waving boats on once the water is clear below the weir – but not always!
Try it! Even if you swim it is an easy recovery in waist deep water.

Martin Dreyer

As you approach Ernie you have to take a bit of a right turn at the top so look to align your nose with the middle pillar of College Road bridge. Go down right of centre and, whilst you can use your paddle to brace, by the time you get to the bottom make sure you have your paddle at head height because you need your paddle to get through the big hole at the bottom.

ProTipMcGregorHank McGregor

Shoot middle right angling your nose of boat to the right of centre