Day 27, Friday, 13.02.2009



Nice Southerlies these days – and I’m heading north!

This is how it looked like for everybody – including me…

I felt a bit guilty to not have paddled the last two days, but having done the (very) necessary rudder installation…yes, the forecast for Wednesday and Thursday was all similar: Strong to stronger southerlies. 5-6, or 25-35 kn.. so I guessed I picked the right days to be off for thoses chores. Hoping it will be better on Friday and following days…


Here’s Karel’s forecast for Friday (today…) on:


Fri mnrg se 4 to 6 bft noon se 5 to 6 bft aft ese 5 to 6 bft seas 2 to 3 mtr frm sse

Sat mrng e 4 to 6 bft noon e 4 to 5 gusts 6 bft aft e to ese 4 to 5 bft seas 2 to 3 later 3 to 4 mtr frm ese

Sun mrng ese 4 to 6 bft (depending where you are) noon same as mrng aft ese 5 to 6 bft seas 4 to 5 mrng aft 5 to 6 mtr frm ne

Mon mrng se 5 to 7 bft noon se 6 to 7 bft aft se 7 to 8 bft seas 4 to 6 mtr frm e

Tues mrng ese 7 to 8 bft noon nne 4 to 5 bft aft nne 4 to 5 bft

Wed mrng nnw 2 bft noon nw 3 to 4 bft aft nnw 3 to 4 bft



The “nice southerlies” are actually south-easterlies to easterlies, plus I’m heading not due north, but North-East…
If I wouldn’t have had my new rudder today, I would probably be still on the water, fighting to go where I wanted to.
It was full stern beam winds and seas all day, about 135 degrees…and the seas have been building to a bit more than the forecasted 2-3 m. Plus I was paddling along high cliffs with lovely rebound, though 2-5 km offshore…
To tell a long story short – those 40 km to Port Hacking today was the toughest paddle in my life. 
I was covering only 40 km horizontally, but another 60 km vertically…no way my energy and concentration would last to the planned destination Sydney-Manly. Sorry about the gathered crowd waiting for me there today…
You are mentally spent after such a full concentrated 7 1/2 hr paddle, seeing 4 meters high water walls building besides you every minute, and in between “only ” 2-3 meter high ones…the 4 m ones breaking on the top about every 4th or 5th set. I had to turn my bow mostly full into the breaking stuff (thanks to the new rudder boat control was great today), or was bracing nice and wet into them.
Thank goodness me new fleece shirt I bought yesterday kept me warm and wet (it felt actually pretty dry after every breaker…), the last other two days I was pretty chilly in my Polypro with the Reed Pertex cag plus my Kokatat Ronin PFD. 
Just my neck became pretty stiff from constantly watching to my right – I barely managed to wrap my black silk scarf around it. I could neither see the beautiful cliffs nor making out details like the narrow Wattamolla entrance, the only potential landing spot before Port Hacking. No way to go into that gap in these conditions…
No food besides two apples, eaten held together in one hand with the paddle. Freshwater to drink and rinse my salty mouth was luckily handy with my hydration system tube.
I was able to pump my cockpit out only quickly once…the spraydeck tube just on the fleeceshirt takes quite some water (plus me peeing in the cockpit…)
This made me nice and stable at the second half of the day – having about 10 cm of water in the cockpit at the end…warmish water, no freezing… I was sitting in the cockpit luckily today with shorts and Reed Pertex pants on.
But I noticed how I became physically spent as well from that paddle, plus I had the water around my legs all day. I started to feel a bit chilly heading into Port Hacking. High time to go in…
Not sure how I’ll decide tomorrow. Seas are even more building, but there are less cliffs until Sydney-Manly…

9 comments on “Day 27, Friday, 13.02.2009

Hi All

I note from Spots info that battery life on tracking mode is 14days, thats continuous use, with tracking mode on wouldn’t this whole expedition gain even more attention as folk would be watching it alot more, sorry Freya unless you don’t want to be checked on every 10mins, it could potentially gain more coverage for the site, the activity, the sponsors and the units capabilities, hey and get more sponsors on board this Epic Expedition 🙂

By spots reckoning the unit would be onto its 3rd battery change by this stage, so are you looking for a battery sponsor.

The Spot messenger device is not used with tracking to save batteries, will be used with that feature on longer crossings. OK message sent at start and end of each paddling leg.
Legs posted here:, click yellow Freya logo at top right of homepage, then “Expedition Map”


Thanks for the info, curious as to how the spot is being run, is a message being sent only at every major stop as opposed to a track log as such where by the spot sends a message every 10mins

Regards Steve

Mick Martin

Congratulations on your trip so far. One question: Do you have an electric pump ? You say “I was able to pump my cockpit out only quickly once…”


I’m sorry to hear you’re struggling with adverse weather. Not wanting to sound like your mother but take your time, it’s YOUR expedition after all. ;O)

Much Respect.


You can view Freya’s track log from her SPOT device plotted on Google Earth on the VSKC website (link off logo at top on left side of your screen). At most it will be 24 hrs behind.

Richard Rawling
VSKC Communications

Hey Freya
All the best on your paddle. Wishing you all the love. If you decide to take a day or two in Sydney do you have the idea to do a roll clinic somewhere?

Comments are closed