Low water levels in the Macquarie River and ongoing drought conditions have prompted organisers to cancel the WomDomNom Kayak expedition this year.
(min cost $8)
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President Andrew McKay said it they are "disappointed" to make the decision to cancel the ninth annual event which raises funds for mental health organisation the Black Dog Institute.
"Unfortunately due to record low inflows into Burrendong dam over the past few years and subsequent low scheduled outflows in late November that will have been confirmed by WaterNSW, the WomDomNom committee have had to make the hard decision to cancel the 2019event," he said.
Almost 130 kayakers from all over NSW usually take to the Macquarie River at the end of November for the annual five-day kayak from Burrendong Dam to Narromine.
The recreational pleasure trip was named after the three major towns along the route: 'WomDomNom' stands for Wellington on Macquarie (Wom), Dubbo on Macquarie (Dom), Narromine on Macquarie (Nom).
WomDomNom is hosted by the Macquarie River Paddle club and the charity event promotes recreational kayaking, while showcasing the Macquarie River and raise money and awareness for the Black Dog Institute supporting depression and mental illness.
Vice President Bev Winters, who has been involved since the first annual event in 2011 said it is even more disappointing to support such a worthy cause especially during times of drought.
"It is especially disappointing to not be raising awareness and funds for Black Dog Institute this year, especially when mental illness is such an important issue during the ongoing drought and hard times for many," she said.
"It is also a shame that our cancelled event this year can not bring visitors to our local area, business to the towns and money to the country economy in these difficult times."
The river provides different challenges every year, last year was severe head winds, dust storms and cold weather. Every year the water levels are different however this year the water levels will most likely be inadequate making the 170 kilometre trek too difficult.
"Environmental impact is another reason for this decision with lower water levels in the river the environmental footprint to the river system is higher and there are sensitive river and plant habitats, fish spawning sites, riparian vegetation, and disturbance to fish in shallows to also consider," committee member Emmalee Holmes said.
The WomDomNom organising committee would like to thank the community, volunteers and businesses who assist with this annual event for so much support over the last eight years and hope to support them again with future WomDomNom events.
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