Loc: Bahia Fortuna Isla Bavelstock
Dist: 31,2 km
Start: 6:50 End: 14:35
During the night, I heard a snuffling and puffing below my tent – as I was camping on a 2 m high rock just above the water line, a seal was floating underneath me and made his usual noises! Quite a strange feeling…I stuck my head out of the tent to have a look at the night sky at 2 am, but only saw a red flashing navigation aid light.
The sea ia here quite littered with navigation aids – lighthouses, buoys – lit or unlit, channel markers…seems like getting a big boat safe through this maze of low islands is quite a job! For me, it’s just a pleasant paddle – well, if there won’t be the wind eventually again…
Until the two about 3,5 km each crossings to and from Isla Orlebar, I was sheltered enough and the wind was not too strong to have a nice paddle. But the first crossing was already quite some work, as the now about 20 knots usual north west wind was funneling hard through that gap from the side channel. But it was only 3,5 km, so I kept on fighting. I had harder crossings…and the sea was still reasonable low.
A bit of a relaxing paddle in the lee of Isla Orlebar, a quick pee stop on a gravel beach which I even could have used as a marginal sheltered and dry campsite, but it was too early in the day for me, just 1 pm, and even sunny. Though the afternoon the wind was supposed to breeze up to 25-30 knots…
The second small crossing of another 3,5 km played up again, 2 meter seas and wind strong as hell. But it was only 3,5 km…and I kept on fighting to find the lee of Isla Baverstock. there I was hoping to make some more miles, and to find the perfect lee.
Well, perfect was the lee only at some points, and as soon as it came to the bay, I didn’t find much of it any more, though paddling close along the coast.
So enough fighting, why should I rip my body up for a few more km, when I knew that the next few days would be low to no wind…I rather found a perfect campsite with even dry sand at an about 2 m wide river and had a flash thought…it’s early in the day, it’s more or less still sunny – I’ll have a bath! Well, rather washing my hair with a full body wash with the running down foam , a swim was too much of cold water for today…I was already stumbling around a bit dizzy with the frozen head, because of washing my hair head down, and almost fell over fully into the river!
But as soon I dried myself and put on warm clothes, I felt as good as it can be! I washed my headgear and underwear, but had to retreat into my tent soon, as the unavoidable heavy rain squall came along. But what a nice feeling, to have fluffy and good smelling hair and a clean body again! A big pot of yummy spaghetti carbonara finished the day!
It looks like I’ll be paddling long tomorrow and Saturday, with almost no wind! Yuppieh! It’s only about 360 km left to Puerto Eden, where I’ll have a reasonable pit stop again. 7-8 full paddling days, if the weather is reasonable…