Fri 25/04-2014 Day 666

My last landing for this section, surf is moderate now


Feeling frustrated with wind, current, surf and energy level
Pos: here
Loc: behind Ponta dos Mangues Verdes
Acc: tent
Dist: 14,9 km
Start: 5:45 End: 9:30

This night was different than the previous two dead calm ones where I guesses one needs to paddle at night. The wind simply didn’t do down a single knot. The surf dumper was acceptable on the outgoing half tide, I had just guesses in this speed I would be running out of water until I reach the next reasonable village! I may need to go in the big river mouth coming up soon and refill…

But the rescue came with three big fishing boats just coming out of this river are when I was just launched in first light. They were so close to the shore I could wave at the second one to stop, which they did curiously. I could refill three bags, plus my 3,5 other full ones this should last for a week.During this procedure, we were drifting in the wrong direction for maybe 500 m or more, just with the wind, despite the right current…I didn’t dare to ask for two more bags…maybe I should have? Their big canisters for five people aren’t endless either…

I landed again easy to stow away the bags, then eventually reached back to my camp spot and paddled on. I had to cross now this big river mouth entry, which usually gives a lot of shallows and cross current with breakers. I negotiated successfully a bunch of exposed sandbank, but actually had rather better paddled right to the big entry which was calm from this end.

I paddled past many breaker zones, mostly upfront, always seeing the calm river mouth in the distance. Eventually, after paddling over a last shallow bank with low cross breakers I thought there is something wrong with my rudder, I could press left, but not right, and the efficiency is not much either…fortunately I was just out of the breaker zone and across the deep calm entrance and could land on a calm piece of beach to have a look. Basically, it was fortunately just the fin stuck with sand not coming down again and locking the rudder foot on one side. Thank goodness…I attached my launching string and decided to let it in the loop of the fin until I am really out of this shallow breaking zone and in deep calmer water which was quite soon after the last jutting out shallow sand bank.

But when I wanted to release the string, amazingly it was stuck somehow which never happened when I checked carefully not to have knots in it…I had to jump into the water in still quite some sea, and found a bunch of sea weed knotted to the loop and string. Eventually free and back in, I kept on paddling on some seas until another long jutting out shallow breaker zone came up which I didn’t dare to cross close in.

I gave it a wide berth, watched by two big fishing boats throwing their nets in big waves! I was also amazed that they were there, getting thrown around probably more than me…when I was able to avoid the heaviest breakers. I also avoided getting caught in the nets, and eventually this ugly zone was past and calmer stuff came up.

But it was also now half an hour after the tide turned, and my speed decreased from ever so fast 4 to 5 km/h with current but against 15 knots wind, down to 2 to 3 or less, accordingly my energy level and motivation to keep on paddling. I also saw still some surf on a now shallow beach, and as around low tide it is usually the lowest, I decided to call it a day already. Tomorrow was much lower wind forecasted, hope it stays like that…

I got closer, thinking I can carefully sneak in…but a stupid fucking high breaker caught me and side surfed me already full in, although I wanted to stroll along the beach for a little while…it didn’t throw me, amazing, as I was quite surprised by this one…but my bracing is since the Pororoca obviously perfect… 🙂

I actually wanted to land close to four people I spotted, but now rather ended up at their parked motor bike. It was a family of four, all on one bike!, fishing the father, the teenage son helping, mom and ten year old daughter watching. They were driving back with the girl on the tank between the teenage son driving, mom in the middle and the father on the stern with a heavy sack of nets on his shoulders…unbelievable…

After some conversation and help with my gear they offered me to stay in the close by beach hut, but thanks, this was so broken and my tent inside wouldn’t have made things better…I simply put up on the sand as usual, with additional tarp shade.

I was walking back to grab my third gear bag and to briefly have a look at some wreck, my one gear bag was already up, the second one brought by the woman. On erecting my tent, I noticed one of my dry bags has been opened…why the heck was the woman so curious? Nothing was missing, it was the same as some weeks before with the fishermen I was staying in the stilt hut. No good feeling…I avoided her coming too close to my tent and have more curious looks.

This beach had some large sandy clean looking rainwater pools, thank goodness I could have a proper bath, hair wash and refill the last two bags with at least cooking and washing water. Now I should be set those 70 km to the next village…despite I am frustrated about the slow and tough progress. I am simply worn out, need a longer break very soon. And am hoping those antibiotics are not the main reason…

The surf turned horrible the last two hours before high tide, but now after 3 pm the tide goes down again and it is better. Tomorrow’s tide turn is at 10 am, so minimum 4 hrs of relatively reasonable paddling…if not more, as it is supposed to be lower wind than today…hopefully…

1 comment on “Fri 25/04-2014 Day 666


What is the forecast for winds in the area?
You have great stamina to go against the wind. It must seem like an up hill battle sometimes.
Hope you are being kind to yourself.

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