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Best Foot Forward NZ founder is now a Kathmandu Coast to Coast-endorsed assessor

By January 18, 2019February 15th, 2019News
Bob McLachlan

Best Foot Forward NZ founder/operator Bob McLachlan is now a Kathmandu Coast to Coast-endorsed assessor for the Grade 2 Multisport Kayak Certificate.

Based in Wanaka, Bob received a NZOIA Multisport Kayak Instructor Award in 2018 and is the only endorsed instructor located south of Canterbury.

A World Champion Adventure racer with more than 30 years of international kayaking and raft guiding experience under his belt, Bob is a wealth of knowledge about paddling and river-running skills. His nickname Big Water Bob says it all!

To be assessed for the Grade 2 Multisport Kayak Certificate, you need to attend a two-day course, which is ideally intended for only two people at a time, to meet Best Foot Forward NZ’s client/guide ratio. This allows Bob to be able to focus on high quality, personalised assessment and instruction.

The assessment criteria is listed below to inform you of what level is expected to gain a Grade 2 Kayak Certificate. Only already-proficient paddlers will be able to leave Wanaka after their first two days with a completed Grade 2 certificate.

If you do not feel your kayaking skills will meet the criteria, Bob is available for instruction sessions, where he can work through paddling technique; learning how to read the rapids; choosing the best lines and making wise decisions in the river environment. If you are new to kayaking and unsure about what equipment is going to suit you, feel free to contact Bob.

Bob’s goal is to help you to be able to tick all of the assessment boxes, including paddling a kayak confidently through Grade 2 rapids. Although this, of course, takes experience and one of the most advantageous ways to upskill is spending time kayaking in a river. You can choose to do this with your own paddling partners, avoiding the expense of paying for further instruction. The certificate is gained with a short paddle with Bob once you are competent.

Best Foot Forward NZ can help all kayakers at any level of expertise, whether it be none, or a lot, to achieve your kayaking goals. Our course is run on the Clutha and Hawea Rivers, local to Wanaka. They are beautiful, scenic rivers, which are not susceptible to flooding (so a booked date will always run) and both rivers offer all the features needed to pass a Grade 2 Kayak Certificate.

Price for the Grade 2 Kayak Certificate

$750 per person – includes instruction and shuttles over a consecutive two-day period.

Kayak tuition

If you wish to get some help to reach the stage where you are competent to sit a Grade 2 Kayak Certificate you can book kayak instruction sessions with Bob.

$150 for the first hour and $50 per hour after that.


Liaise with Bob to find a two-day period where he is available.