Travels with Paddles

a sea kayaking journal

Axel Schoevers (Photo: A. de Krook) Name:
Axel Schoevers
Rijswijk, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Anglesey Summer Time

It has been a bit quiet on my blog. Just too active in the outdoors to also find time for the computer blog. What to think about this high brace?
Karien is from the island of Texel, so I would call this a Texel high support stroke (high brace). Phil countered with a head stand. He might not yet be as 'flexible' as Freya, but I bet he is working on that as well. I wonder how tight Reed gear would look on him (LOL).
Karien and I enjoyed a wonderful week in Anglesey. While parts of the UK had to endure major flash floods creating mayhem in many towns, Anglesey had beautiful weather. We played in a sunny North Stack race on Monday.
A film crew seemed to have come just for us. Great waves to surf on; big smiles. But when TideRace Aled arrived, it dawned upon us that the crew (with Olly Saunders) was shooting Aled Williams.
We surfed for a long time at North Stack before spending most of the rest of the afternoon sun bathing at Parliament's House cave.
Wednesday we headed for Penrhyn Mawr. It was full springs, and we got delayed a bit. That resulted us entering PM at max flood. The swell against tide conditions created a much too rough to handle middle and outer race. Instead we headed for the inner shoots (locally known as the 'chicken run'). It felt like running a raging river. Never before I have seen PM run this fast. Karien was a little 'intimidated' at first; the situation not helped by an Army helicopter hovering above, throwing red smoke flares on the cliff and winching a man onto the cliff. The ear deafening sound of the rotors superimposed on the sounds of fast flowing water made clear communication impossible. After ten minutes or so, Karien's apprehensive look was replaced by a joyous smile. I was perfectly happy with the conditions 'safety-wise' in the inner races. The middle and outer races were totally unsafe with continuous thrashing waves; sure bet for loops, pop-outs and inevitable rescue nightmares. Only in the very last hour of the flood we dared to venture out into the middle and outer races enjoying a wild and bumpy ride but not much surfing. As I said on many occasions before, PM is never the same, always something different.
Thursday we joined Phil and Roger on a trip to the Skerries. Naturally the sun always shines on the Skerries! On the way back Phil showed us the most beautiful cave system on Anglesey, paddling in a 50 feet 'through-cave'.

I told in an earlier blog entry about Noel Webb arriving in Anglesey. On Thursday Marcus Demuth arrived back from his Ireland circumnavigation. What a coincidence. This year I counted at least 10 expeditions using Sea Kayaking UK sea kayaks. From the Expedition 'work horse' Explorers to GreenlanderPro's and four (!) Triton double expeditions. I could not get the details of some of those sponsored expeditions from Nigel Dennis before I left, so if you know of more I am quite keen to add them to my NDK Sponsored Expeditions page.

Saturday was 'play time' at Penrhyn Mawr. Getting towards neaps it resembled nothing that we had encountered on Wednesday. Swell gone, racing gently.

The week passed too quickly. On our way back to Hull we took on Roger's invitation to visit him and had an unexpected full 'Sunday Roast' lunch with his wife at their place in the Welsh hills overlooking a vast valley.

Thank you Nigel and Tara for having us stay at your place and thanks for letting Karien use the Romany. Karien and I had a great time! Barry, will paddle with you next time around. Phil, thanks for letting us join you and showing us Anglesey's secret caves. We just missed the Fun Fair; bumper cars for next year?

Lots more Anglesey Summer Time pictures to be added to my Logbook at a later date.

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