A group of 14 local dragon boat paddlers braved the cold conditions in Tasmania to complete in the 2018 Huon Challenge earlier this month.
Made of paddlers from Dragons Abreast Bendigo and Dragons Afloat Bendigo, the team finished the 36-kilometre route and competed along-side teams from across Australia.
After training for months at Lake Weeroona with a combination of early morning starts and three training sessions a week of endurance paddling, the squad were able to enjoy stunning scenery and picturesque salmon farms in Tasmania during the event.
Member of the combined team, Jo Haythorne, described how fulfilling the race was to take part in.
“It was an extremely challenging event for our group,” Ms Haythorne said.
“But the sense of achievement at the end was hugely rewarding.
“It has given us all a taste for it and we are looking at doing more endurance events in the future.”
Dragons Abreast Bendigo is a team of breast cancer survivors which was founded in 2002 to offer support and provide a social, active group with the aim of having fun.
Dragons Afloat meanwhile were founded later, in 2010, originally as a prostate cancer support group but more recently it has evolved to become a community group which still has some cancer survivors as members and supporters.
Both teams are happy to welcome new paddlers.
They train together on Lake Weeroona on Monday evenings and Saturday mornings. No experience or equipment is needed to join.