- WA's unique paddle and power dinghy event from Northam to Perth
- A total of 467 competitors in this year's race
- Good river conditions for the 124km, two-day event
Sport and Recreation Minister Mia Davies officially launched the 2016 Avon Descent this morning in Northam, as canoeists, kayakers, ski paddlers and power boat crews set out in chilly conditions at 7am.
Good river conditions, more family events and 100 more competitors than 2015 set the tone for two great days of fitness and adventure in the historic and challenging event.
The course winds down the Avon River through the historic farming regions of Northam and Toodyay, to the Swan Valley wineries, and eventually into the waters of the Swan River.
"It's great to be part of the excitement in Northam at the start of what is one of the world's great white water challenges on this winter's morning," Ms Davies said.
"I know the paddlers and crews have been training very hard and the 2016 event is set to be a memorable one."
This year's event will feature more activities along the route, with a number of family fun festivals organised by local governments.
"I want to thank the Eastern Metropolitan Regional Council (EMRC), the Town of Bassendean and cities of Belmont and Bayswater for the Sunday family fun festivals," the Minister said.
"The Liberal National Government presented a cheque for $155,000 from Lotterywest to the EMRC earlier this week, with the money going towards five community events at locations along the Avon and Swan rivers from Northam to Bayswater.
"These events will make the 2016 Avon Descent a great couple of days for spectators and support crews along the way."
The race will finish at Riverside Gardens, Bayswater on Sunday, August 7 with the first crews expected in the early afternoon.
Minister's office - 6552 5500