Sun 14.08.2016 Day 43

Sunday, 14.08.2016
Day 43
39,4 km
6.30 h to 14.40 h
N 52.13503 W 07.20173
Back to the starting beach!

My last day around Ireland! I conveniently got up when the light came up, and launched into an almost dead calm wind day, temperatures close to 20 degrees, some sun. What does a weather-proven paddler around Ireland want more as a final day? I had to round one mayor point, Hook Head, cross two bays and I would be finished with this “training run” 🙂!

Hook Head were just flat rocks which looked like piled up pancakes, slow favorite current, and had an impressive lighthouse with a sightseeing platform. A long line of motorhomes was parked up to the lighthouse, have I really been once one of those?? I took it slow, enjoyed the calm day, ate a mango and was wondering if there would be anyone at the beach when I would be arriving? Any reasonable paddler should be somewhere out on such a beautiful day himself! Mick was out with a group and not available until 2 pm, he said…

But he changed his mind, and decided to take his group of 10 paddlers heading into my direction, and we calculated a meeting hour around 1.45 pm. It worked out perfectly, as I had the current amazingly with me and could save some time to dive into the last piece of beautiful coast line with some caves and arches at Swinhead between Waterford Bay and Tramore Bay. There had been already a huge deep cave at the southern end of Baginburn Head, and I guessed now I am to close the loop at the south coast! Unfortunately, my strong torch light was down and this cave was really dark and feeling deep, with eerie howling sounds indicating seals.

But when I thought this was it, it got even topped by the very last two kilometers, starting right at Oyen Rock at the 3-towers headland behind Tramor Bay! Ireland’s coast at it’s finest, in low swell, calm seas, sunshine and nice temperatures! What a final! Despite my meeting date with Mick’s group, I paddled into and through any rocky hole or gap, and absolutely enjoyed this last stretch of my circumnavigation! Take any new paddler here, and he or she must get hooked with sea kayaking.

I met Mick’s group just with 15 min delay, thanks for the lovely reception, guys! They have started their paddle another 2 km down from “my” beach, and I decided to honor the reception party, the beautiful day and the lovely island and “over paddled” my round trip by another 2 km with again many arches and nice rocks, before I turned around and landed where my car was parked.
I was a bit hot now in my dry suit, and after loading everything up on my car, I jumped in the water for a swim. Dressed with my thermals though, too many beach visitors here…

I was welcome at Mick’s house the afternoon, but had to wait for the family being back from a birthday party of one of the daughters in the cinema, while I was having perfect time to clean and organize my gear and myself. I stayed for the night, and surely Mick and I had many things to chat! Thanks for hosting me and for looking after my car, Mick!

Thanks also the many helpers on my way who brought me food to my beaches, shared company on paddling stretches, and offered me a place to stay though it was not matching to take many up for their offer. Thanks to Karel Vissel sending me the weather! Thanks to Lettmann providing me the Speedliner and the wing blade for this trip. They proved to be true high quality “racing gear”, although I was definitively not racing 🙂 !

I also used on this trip already well proven gear, but given any time before for other trips my worthy Kokatat Expedition dry suit and Ronin PFD, my loved Hilleberg Allak tent with their solid large sand pegs, my best Snapdragon spray deck and back rest, from Cascade Design: Thermarest sleeping pad, SealLine Nimbus dry bags and MSR Dromedary water bags, a variation of Aquapacs (covered in self-sewn neoprene sleeves) to keep all my electronics safe and dry, an ACR ResQLink PLB as the “last resort”, North Water under deck bags, cockpit bags and paddle leash, a Skwoosh gel seat, Teva sandals, Blue Bandoo visors and YAK open palm mitts and a variation of clothing from my past-sponsor Haglöfs.

Not sponsored, but well worth mentioning as proven gear: My “Freshette” female urinating device (only this brand works well and with comfort while solo seated in a kayak and through the male dry suit zipper! Forget all those soft, pointy, sharp edged or too small other devices…), a self-sewn fluffy sleeping bag liner from those cheap everywhere-available blankets – it is so cozy inside your bag and you don’t have the usual cool feeling slippery surface inside!, thin long neoprene socks from Camaro which cover my Gore tex booties of the dry suit before putting on the sandals.

Ireland is one piece of a gem to paddle around, doable for low to moderate skill level – if you use your brain and watch the weather. It has not any surf landing (well, at least I did not find any, only dead calm landings), and an absolute stunning scenery and few stretches you may call somehow “boring” – but only in comparison to the stunning parts. If you can, start in Belfast or Dublin, to have something to top after the not that exciting east coast. Or – like I did by chance – finish with some highlight stretch which you may make you come back!

Bild könnte enthalten: 1 Person, im Freien, Wasser und Natur
Bild könnte enthalten: 2 Personen, Personen, die lachen, Personen, die sitzen, im Freien, Wasser und Natur
Bild könnte enthalten: 1 Person, im Freien, Wasser und Natur
Bild könnte enthalten: 1 Person, im Freien, Wasser und Natur
Bild könnte enthalten: 1 Person, sitzt, im Freien, Wasser und Natur
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22 Kommentare
Kommentare
Gene Cahill
Gene Cahill Congratulations and well done 🙂

Ruth Mc Auliffe
Ruth Mc Auliffe · Mit Alan Horner und 18 weiteren Personen befreundet

Congratulations! Great journey to follow online

Tom Bergh
Tom Bergh Thanks for the sharing, Ms Freya. Have enjoyed it.

Dave Cottier
Dave Cottier · Mit Jim Kennedy und 7 weiteren Personen befreundet

Congratulations Freya.
Could not get to paddle from the hook or somewhere with you on your final journey as i had to catch up on business after my time searching to meet you 😊
Or ‘ geocacher, ing you ‘Mehr anzeigen

John Markham
John Markham Congratulations. Thanks for sharing your journey with us, es war schön.

Etienne Muller
Etienne Muller Thanks Freya, for keeping this excellent log of your journey around our country. I hope it inspires many more paddlers to follow suit.

Eileen Murphy
Eileen Murphy Congrats Freya. Hope you enjoyed our stunning coastline even though you did seem to have your fair share of rain. And now that you are finished, the heat wave has arrived! Enjoyed paddling the short stretch to the Bailey Lighthouse with you last Tuesday. Pic attached

Bild könnte enthalten: Ozean, im Freien, Wasser und Natur

Donal Dowd
Donal Dowd Well done on your most recent achievement to add to your long list of sea kayaking achievements. Im sorry that I didn’t manage to link up during your adventure. In ireland.

Tony Power
Tony Power Well done. You started and finished at my local beach and I missed you each time Lol

Tony Doody
Tony Doody Congratulations great achievement

Peter McClenaghan
Peter McClenaghan Well done Freya, really enjoyed your posts, and the paddle at Groomsport. Back to business.

Randall Lackey
Randall Lackey As with all your trips,though Australia was through reading the book,You were an excellent inspiration and provided a perfectly enjoyable experience of having done the adventure ourselves.You are certainly still being my inspiration to press on and do Mehr anzeigen

Brian J. McMahon
Brian J. McMahon Well done Freya !! It’s a fantastic achievement!

Peter Brewitt
Peter Brewitt · Mit Chris McDaid und 4 weiteren Personen befreundet

Congratulations Freya. Welcome back again !

Stef Lerner
Stef Lerner Inspiring and motivating as always, thanks and congratulations!

Frances Price
Frances Price Congratulations, Freya, and thank you for sharing this latest adventure with us with your wonderfully descriptive words and your delightful photos! 🙂

Sue Todd
Sue Todd Congratulations from DOWN UNDER here in New Zealand!! Wish I could have paddled with you on the final day! Was there is spirit! You are truly inspirational !!

Bunny Ryba
Bunny Ryba · 3 Gemeinsame Freunde

What a great trip, thanks for sharing wish I was there!

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