Spotlight on Urban Adventure: The Moo Canoes Experience - adventuro

Spotlight on Urban Adventure: The Moo Canoes Experience

Moo Canoes, a standout centre spearheaded by Katy Hogarth and Alfie Hatt, brings urban adventure to London’s Waterways and is one of adventuro’s partners. We were excited to catch up with Katy, who gave us more detail on her business, which represents the spirit of urban adventure, making water sports accessible and enjoyable for everyone in the heart of London.

The Vision Behind Moo Canoes

During the Diamond Jubilee Flotilla on the Thames in 2012, Katy found the seed of an idea forming. Combining her expertise as a whitewater kayak, SUP, and ski coach with her competitive experience in surf kayaking, Katy and her business partner, Alfie, wanted to make canoeing and kayaking accessible to adults within London’s urban landscape.   

“We set out to bring canoe hire to London’s waterways and address a lack of provision for adults seeking fun canoe and kayak-based experiences. There were lots of youth facilities and clubs around, but much less on offer for adults who were curious to try the sport, or who wanted to paddle to the pub!” – Katy  

What sets Moo Canoes apart is its focus on safety, accessibility, and community. As the first canoe hire company in central London, it has made the city’s waterways more accessible, offering tailor-made boats for a safe and enjoyable experience. With a team of watersport professionals, the company guarantees a warm welcome and expert guidance for every adventurer, ensuring a perfect blend of fun and safety. The company also offers a unique feature of accommodating large groups and providing event options with their bar and kitchen facilities. 

Spotlight on Urban Adventure: The Moo Canoes Experience - adventuro
Credit: Orlando Gili

Inclusivity in Adventure Sports

Moo Canoes is an advocate of promoting gender inclusivity in adventure sports. Through career development opportunities, fair wages, and flexible working conditions, the company aims to keep women and girls interested in sporting jobs. With initiatives like enhanced maternity benefits and female-focused sessions during school hours, Moo Canoes breaks down childcare barriers, making water sports and jobs more accessible. 

“Ensuring we create opportunities for career development and provide the London Living wage, even for younger staff members, is key to keeping women and girls interested in sporting jobs. Providing an enhanced maternity package, and flexible working helps too. Running family taster sessions during holidays and weekends, and female-focussed sessions during school hours, has enabled hundreds of local women to get out on the water without childcare being a barrier.” – Katy 

Inspirational Figures

Katy draws inspiration from athletes across various disciplines, from skiing to gymnastics, who have overcome challenges and excelled in their fields. From Lindsey Vonn’s resilience to Simone Biles’ courage and the water sport community leaders like Sara James and Claire Eatock, these women inspired Moo Canoe’s culture of inclusivity, community and empowerment.  

“Growing up I was a big fan of April O’Neil and Lara Croft, both of whom were smart, adventurous, badasses!” – Katy 

Spotlight on Urban Adventure: The Moo Canoes Experience - adventuro
Credit: Orlando Gili

A Message of Encouragement

Katy’s message to others considering the adventure sports industry is clear: find your tribe, embrace local adventures, and never underestimate the power of a supportive community. The path may be challenging, but it is also rewarding. With a network of support and a bit of creative hustle, success in this industry is within reach. 

“You need allies who will provide stoke when yours is lacking, share lifts, bring extra warm layers, remember to charge their phone, keep a look-out when nature calls, and laugh with you about it all afterwards when you’re back in the warm and dry. Making a living out of your passion is tough, full time roles in seasonal sports are scarce, and in smaller sports even being on the England Team doesn’t come with financial perks. Doing things differently, diversifying, and finding reliable part-time work or side hustles can all help. I worked some shifts for the NHS and customised some wedding dresses for a while!” – Katy

Spotlight on Urban Adventure: The Moo Canoes Experience - adventuro
Credit: Orlando Gili

Getting Started with Paddlesports

For those intrigued by paddlesports, Moo Canoes offers an open invitation to explore the joys of canoeing and kayaking. With over 50 clubs in London alone, the sport is highly accessible. Katy advises newcomers to try different aspects of paddlesports to find their interest, emphasizing that no prior experience is required to start this exciting journey. 

“Canoeing and kayaking are such multi-faceted sports; from sailing canoes, to outriggers, to polo (a full-contact ball game played in boats!). So I’d say it’s key to try a few things with a club or on some courses and find what it is you love before shelling out on kit or equipment.” – Katy  

A Collaborative Spirit

The collaboration between Moo Canoes and adventuro represents a shared commitment to making adventure sports more accessible and enjoyable for everyone. This partnership is about more than just business; it’s about building a community that values inclusivity, empowerment, and the joy of adventure. 

“We first heard about adventuro back in early 2023 and loved the idea of making adventures easier to find. Bringing everything into one place is brilliant for both adventure-seekers and adventure sport coaches. Covering such a wide area makes adventures accessible even during holidays or visiting relatives too. A passion for making adventure sports friendly, fun, and accessible is definitely something we share with adventuro!” – Katy 

Spotlight on Urban Adventure: The Moo Canoes Experience - adventuro
Credit: Orlando Gili

Moo Canoes offers a unique opportunity for Londoners and visitors to explore the city’s waterways in a fun and safe manner. With a focus on accessibility, empowerment, and community, Moo Canoes invites everyone to experience the joys of paddle sports. Whether you’re curious about canoeing or kayaking, Moo Canoes provides the perfect starting point for your next adventure. 

Moo Canoes, based in London, is one of our partners. Book to explore London’s waterways with them HERE.

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Kate cofounder of adventuro
Kate
Co-founder and COO

I'm Kate, co-founder and COO of adventuro. Our goal is to assist you in diving into the sports you've always been eager to explore or to make the most of the activities you already love. My role is to partner with top-tier instructors, guides, and activity centres, so that we can offer you the full spectrum of adventure sports, from beginner to pro.

I love adventure sports and connecting with others who do, too. Having worked with hundreds of incredible partner centres, you can quiz me on everything adventure sports related no matter what your entry level. When not scouting out the best places for your next adventure, you'll find me freediving, kayaking, surfing, paddleboarding, mountain biking... oh, and doing a lot of faceplanting!

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