Travels with Paddles

a sea kayaking journal

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

Saturday, May 02, 2009


This year marks my tenth year attending the Anglesey Sea Kayak Symposium. It was in May 2000 that I visited for the first time to check out a feature that I had only heard talking about: tide-races and overfalls.

Anglesey, as I know now, is blessed with a great many of them. And they run 'around the clock'. How 'good' they run is very difficult to predict. A highly variable blend of current (springs/neaps), wind (strength/direction), waves and swell (height/direction) account for very varied conditions.

Today was one of those days when all variables combined to create a magical Penrhyn Mawr tide-race. For your information, it was a neap tide... Somehow races look less intimidating when the sun shines. For the first time I looped in a tide-race. PM was still running and highly playable when we returned to the beach. Ten years ago I would plan my route to avoid tide-races, now I am playing in them at heart's content.
Planning to play in tide-races, the necessary personal skills and leadership issues involved should not be underestimated. The Anglesey Sea Kayak Symposium (or specialist courses) are a great (and safe) way to get introduced/advance into these tidal phenomena. I feel very fortunate to have been introduced to them by the local experts.
Ten years might have gone-by but I am as thrilled as my first paddling strokes catching and surfing the tidal waves.

Many happy returns!

For a slide-show click on one of the above pictures.

1 comment:

Ari Ben said...

Hi Axel, would have liked to have attended the symposium this year, but for sure later.