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Water temperature of the Thames River and wet suit rental

I hope that this question does not sound too odd ball. I will be in London this summer. I noticed that there is a company that offers kayak trips on the Thames River; the route goes through central London. Does anyone know what the water temperature will be during the summer? If it is unhealthy or unsafe cold I will need a wet suit (the kayak company has not responded to my email regarding this matter). If I pack my personal wet suit it will take up a considerable amount of space in my check-in bag so I don't want to bring it unless absolutely necessary. The only places that I see that rent wet suits in London are geared for triathletes, and the rental price is geared towards an extended rental (ie more than I want to pay - might was well pay for an extra piece of check in luggage at $100 each way). Thanks for your help.

Posted by
109 posts

In my experience I have always been able to rent a wetsuit at a dive shop. Have you tried emailing a dive shop in London? There are several to be found on Google. They should also be able to give you an idea of the water temp.

Posted by
9110 posts

It's going to be on the order of twenty degrees, depending on tide or which side of the Ham locks you're on.

Posted by
638 posts

So that 20 degrees centigrade is about 70 Fahrenheit. Brrrrr.....

Posted by
67 posts

Geor,
No answers from me but the kayak trip sounds interesting. What company?

Posted by
449 posts

Thanks for the information. At 70 degrees F it will be hours before hypothermia sets in. That's a relief. I have kayaked in 50 degree water, and if you are immersed for 30 minutes or more w/o wetsuit you are pretty much a goner. Ruth: I have found only one kayak company that has tours on the Thames that go through central London. http://www.kayakinglondon.com/whatsonoffer.php youtube.com has only a few videos of kayakers on the Thames in central London so this does not look like a very popular activity.

Posted by
108 posts

I've rowed a lot on the Thames in London, mainly down near Kingston, but also in the City. The water is pretty filthy dirty, with rats and other creatures of the night. When we'd get cuts on our hands, they would ALWAYS puss up if you did not clean them out really well. I can see why there are not many videos...in two years I don't recall ever seeing kayakers. And down in central London there is enough boat traffic to make you wonder about being out there in such a small craft.

Posted by
4684 posts

Yes, the water is much cleaner than it was a few decades ago but still quite nasty. The Thames is notorious for leptospirosis/Weil's disease, as well as skin infections.

Posted by
449 posts

Hi David and Philip: Thanks for posting your comments. I did some more research about the Thames and it is clear that the water quality is a significantly greater problem than low water temperature. After reading about an Olympic gold medal swimmer dying because of complications after swimming in the Thames and about dozens of people becoming seriously ill after swimming in what is described as a sewer (and a dozen died) I have decided to pass on the kayak trip. Most likely I will take a tour boat or ferry up the Thames to get photographs such as the Olympic rings on the Tower Bridge.

Posted by
67 posts

Oh. Glad I read this. I had signed up for one of the excursions but they had to cancel and gave me a full refund. However, they offered a different excursion for free instead. I guess if it's on the Thames, I'll decline. I was so excited!

Posted by
449 posts

Ruth: Do a google search using something like this: is swimming in the Thames safe. The resulting hits will convince you to stay out of the water. Eg, there is a person swimming the Thames for charity, and despite getting innoculations and antibiotics he ended up grtting really sick, and this is before he reached central London.

Posted by
13045 posts

Alice from "NewYork California" must be related to Bart from the same place. He posted on the RFID thread in Europe, something about phone jammers. I would not trust their links.

Posted by
24 posts

I don't think the Olympic rings are still on the Tower Bridge? We were there on the last day of the Paralympics and the Paralympic logo was on the bridge. Unless they put the rings back up?

Posted by
9363 posts

The Olympic rings were being discussed when this thread was new, in June, before the Olympics. The thread was bumped up by a spam post which has now been deleted.