Images Rob Blakers
The Paddle for Pedder is a colourful step-up in the campaign to restore the beautiful natural Lake Pedder, drowned by the Middle Gordon hydro-electric scheme in 1972.
A crew of kayakers embark on a 25km return journey to the site of the original Lake Pedder where they raise the Restore Pedder banner, calling for the complete restoration of the Lake and its surrounding environsC.
In 2020 the Paddle for Pedder, held Sunday March 1, eleven kayakers paddled from Scotts Peak to regroup over the sunken lake 13 kilometres away. Organised by Tasmanian Adventurer Andy Szollosi, “We battled some significant headwinds in the morning, and it was looking doubtful that we’d be able to raise our giant sail of a banner from the kayaks. After lunch, the winds died right down, giving us the perfect weather window for us to hold our banner up over the sight of the original lake.”
On the evening before the Paddle, the kayakers came together with more than twenty supporters of the restoration including Christine Milne and Bob Brown.
“We are in the extraordinary position where it can be restored, it can be and it will be. This is not a distant dream but a coming reality,” shared Bob.
After seeing the kayakers off from Scotts Peak, the Convenors of the Lake Pedder Restoration Committee, Christine Milne and Todd Dudley took another group of people walking near Strathgordon in an information session for those wanting to know how restoring the lake is now much more feasible than in earlier times.
“Restoration of Lake Pedder will create world news and attract thousands of visitors, including scientists, as part of the United Nations’ Decade of Ecosystem Restoration, 2021-2030,” Christine told the lakeside gathering.
“Not only is energy demand in Tasmania falling as major bulk consumers like Temco wind down, we now have the technology to replace any lost energy generation capacity with a renewable source and energy efficiency and at the same time, restore a globally unique ecosystem,” said Christine Milne. “We are thrilled that Adventure Clothing company Patagonia has become a financial sponsor of the campaign.”
The Paddlers Gallery
The inaugural Paddle for Pedder saw twelve kayakers battle strong winds whipping up white caps across the impoundment waters.