If you have a sporting sense of adventure and you fancy some good healthy, outdoor fun with water then head up to lake Snagov, just north of Bucharest. Here you will find the Ski-Nautic WakeBoard School run by Daniel Ismailciuc (a.k.a. Junior). The drive to the lake once you are past Baneasa takes approximately 30 minutes (depending upon the traffic) but once you are there the city and traffic are quickly forgotten. You make a quick phone call and Junior picks you up from the car park in his boat. You are now two minutes from the platform.
Wakeboarding is essentially a combination of water skiing and snowboarding (apologies to enthusiasts if this is a bit simplistic). As a novice you start out floating behind the boat with your knees to your chest, the board and your feet in front of you and your arms straight in front of you holding the handle. Being a novice I was holding onto the handle for grim death starting to wonder what I was letting myself in for….
Before letting you lose in the water Junior gives get the chance to watch a more experienced wakeboarder in action from the boat. This means that you sit trying not to look too impressed whilst the boarder flies gracefully through the air jumping across the wake of the boat. If you see Junior in action then your ambition will know no limits as he looks like he was born on a board. As his father, Simion, was a Champion at European, World and Olympic level (with a gold medal at junior level – no pun intended) this is not so far from the truth.
Once the boat starts to pull you there is a rich mixture of exhilaration and ‘oh my word!’ running through your mind. I was fortunate and managed to get up onto the board first time. This is probably due to good instruction prior to ‘launch’ and the fact that I have water-skied occasionally in the past but it still made me smile inwardly. Once you are up and running the exhilaration takes over completely and the sensation is a real blast.
From experience it will probably take a few visits before you are airborne and landing again in the style to which you would like to be accustomed. I did manage (not entirely intentionally) to get into the air several times but with a strong record of landing face down more practise is required.
If you find the prospect of some fun on the water whilst escaping from the city then look no further. The cost per round including tuition and equipment is 60 RON. Novices will do well to manage more than two rounds in an afternoon so it’s a lot of fun without huge expense.
The website with contact details can be found at the following link: