6.00 to 15.15 h
It took exactly 10 min after I sent off my yesterday’s first Facebook post to be looked up on the beach by some avid reader – Donal, a local sea kayaker, took his chance to invite me for a beer! I was not keen on the drink, but was happy for another half an hour chat at my tent. Thanks for the visit!
My elbows felt all right to keep on paddling, the only painful issue for the whole day was my right middle finger joint. With cold swollen fingers in these chilly water and air temperature conditions, I could not open my right hand as usual on every stroke without a sharp pain in the joint. Later in the camp getting warm again it got better, no idea how I should treat that problem than *not* to get cold swollen fingers – impossible.
But I enjoyed a calm but chilly paddling day along beautiful cliffs if not crossing the bays, almost too calm to be exciting. Two lucky dolphins were my company in the morning, one regular size, one huge – was it a dolphin at all? It had no spout, though it was almost whale size. I really need to catch up with my local biology knowledge! (Now I know it must have been a mink whale…)
Before Knockadoon Head, my eye got caught by a huge metal crane installed on the base of the cliffs – what was that rusty monster doing there? It took me a while to realize it was not installed there to lift up gold and gems from the caves in the cliffs, but was a flooded wreck of a floating crane, stranded quite creative as a piece of industrial artwork. Even more fascinating were two beautiful colored jellyfish floating lazily up and down a flat rock besides the crane.
With the tide changing against me the afternoon, some wind came up and my speed went down to 3-4 km/h, not pleasant enough to motivate me to cross Ballycotton Bay to just end up in some village harbor. I rather sneaked along the cliffs to find a beautiful remote rocky beach lurking in the sunshine, and I decided almost 50 km for the day is enough for my sore finger joint. Thank goodness it seems like my elbows are making no big issue on paddling! Now they have to even get even better on my special “treatment”, that ridiculous small special movements like mating the clips of my dry bags won’t hurt like hell. But I can paddle!
I enjoyed my clean camp on the highest ledge of the cobblestone beach, and took a short pleasant walk and climb over the cliffs to the nearby coves. A perfect camp spot!