Welcome To My World of Pedals and Paddles

An account of my Sea Kayaking and Mountain Biking exploits

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

Six Hours North

Life has been pretty hectic with work lately which is the reason why my blog has not been kept up to date.
Last bank holiday 3 - 5 May Eurion and myself headed North to Angelsey to attend the Nigel Dennis Sea Kayak Symposium.

Just in case you are wondering what a symposium is,from experience it would appear to be a teach in during the day, lectures in the evening followed by a few beers.
It was a long drive in the motorhome towing my new trailer (I cannot get the Kayak on the roof) so I opted for a classroom session on the Saturday learning how not to get lost. This was taken by Trys Morris and was really informative.


On Sunday Eurian, Hywel and myself decided to scare the pants off ourselves and signed up for the Tide Races and overfalls day led by Simon Osborne.

We set off from Soldiers Point adjacent to Holyhead Harbour and headed over to North Stack. This is a tide race adjacent to large cliffs.



The water runs really fast and forms standing waves just like a river but much larger.



There are also breakouts again just like a river. We ran the top fall and broke out in an eddy on the left under the cliff.

It was possible to ferry glide out into the Race, have a play/surf and then return to the comparitive safety of the eddy. So this was our base for the next couple of hours.



Just before lunch I decided to brave the larger waves further out and after one amazing surf I ended up swimming. The guys on rescue duty were very slick and proffesional and I was soon back in the boat with only a dented pride.



We then paddled around the corner to Parliament Cave for lunch.




The entry and exit was an interesting experience, there were plenty of rocks and you had to time your run between the larger waves. The wash of the passing ferries can also make the waves in both the cave and the tide race much larger.


We had an enjoyable night in the bar with some fiddle dee dee music and a few Newcastle Browns.


Monday was meant to be a half day paddle followed by the long drive home but it was actually an action replay of the day before, without the swim.




Overnight I had managed to do a deal with Brookbank and exchanged the Expedition LV for a full size one. I was sad to see the boat go but I had known from the start that it was not quite right for me and I partly blamed the seating position for my swim. Time will tell if this is correct.


The weather was much better on the Monday and we were able to see much more of the scenery.




South Stack in particular was looking spectacular.



On the way home we decided to play the tourists and visit Llanfair PG

All in all an excellent weekend and I am looking forward to the Storm Gathering in October.

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