Nicolas Fayol leads a River SUP project in Montenegro

Photos: Gilles Reboisson

The French JP team rider Nicolas Fayol leaded a team of experienced river paddlers and the photographer Gilles Reboisson in a self-support mission to discover a hidden treasure in Europe: the Tara River. They went for a trip of 150 km paddling on this water course in Montenegro, where they could face difficult challenges even for skilled white water SUP riders. The result of this adventure was exhibited during the Paddle Expo 2017 in Nuremberg, Germany.

The Tara River lies on the deepest canyon of Europe, with side walls that are more than 1.300 m high at some points. This combination of the complex relief with beautiful clear water of the river and scenic nature around its course on the way to the Danube is protected by UNESCO, making it a paradise for the white water paddling enthusiasts. However, the “Tear of the Europe”, as Tara is also called, is not for everyone.

The trip started on the village of Š?epan Polje. The team enjoyed the very good conditions and were able to paddle from 6 to 8 hours a day, traveling a distance of 37 km on the longest day. The team could enjoy to be in an environment with very dense vegetation, composed of species like black pine, black ash, elm, linden and cork oaks. At a certain point, Nicolas and the others decided to not face the Devil’s Canyon due to the high risk. This spot is a really narrow part of the river and was considered by the team on the edge of what is possible on a SUP. The end point was at the Bosnian-Montenegrin border.