Progress Report 11/06/07 Tuesday – updated by Freya 09.11.07


Weather Update from Karel Vissel:

tues mrng sw 4 to 5bft noon sw 4bft aft sw 3bft seas 1 to 1.30mtr from e dir
wed mrng sw 4bft noon s 4bft aft se 4bft sea m 2.70 aft 2.10mtr frm s


Satellite text message received from Freya:
I took option B and just escaped the high tide boulder trap into the next lovely sandy beach. Tumbledown Bay seas are just not inviting yet for a solo paddler 🙂 43.51 172.46

Update by Freya 09.11.07:
Martin and Fiona had to work on Tuesday like normal people, so they were so nice to get up at 4.30 am with me, and dropped me at Te Oka Bay again where they picked me at 6 am – yawn!! Can’t tell I’m in best shape that early, but that’s a kayaker’s life!
The surf waves going into the bay that morning looked a bit different with the increasing southerly than the day they picked me up, and both admitted they’d rather go to work now than paddling out there…
The tide was going down up to 9.20 am. I didn’t see a chance on launching from the steep boulder bank with the waves crashing on it, so I guessed at low tide the sand bank will show up again as it did when I came in.
I put up the tent as it was quite chilly that morning, and went for a quick nap…
At about 8.30 am I climbed up the hill to have a look out there on the open sea, and from the hilltop it felt quite ok. I knew from driving along there the next bay – Tumbledown Bay – had a flat sandy beach only with no boulders, and that there were two tents sitting down there two days ago, and no farm (like here…) to be seen at the bay’s end. The surf going in there was much less than what went into Te Oka Bay.
Low tide came, and the waves were still touching the steep boulder bank, no way of loading the kayak on the flat soft sandy ground. I felt a bit trapped in, and thought when even on low tide launching in these southerlies is still difficult, when else shall I get out of here???
I decided to give it a try, checking how it is out there, and when it doesn’t feel good, I will just land in the more inviting Tumbledown Bay and wait for better times…
Packing on and pushing down the loaded kayak from the big boulders was probably not best for the kayak’s hull, but I had no other chance…I dragged the boat in the last shallow breaker line into the middle of the bay, the cockpit cover still on to prevent it from getting flooded too early (it worked!), waited for a lull, quickliy jumped in and even managed to put on the spraydeck before the next breaker came. And yes, I took the cockpit cover OFF before doing that…
The breaking through the several surf lines proved to be a bit of a punch and being quite wet, but it was a good practise for future launchings.
But once being out of the bay, the swell and seas were feeling pretty high, and especially too high for feeling good to plan a landing somewhere on that frightening long steep boring stretch of coastline which was next on the map.
So I took the expected option B and was at least away from that steep boulder beach trap, and surfed smoothly into Tumbledown Bay. I found a pefect camp spot in the dunes, dried out again and just relaxed all afternoon.
At about 5.30 pm two guys came down the long walkway to the bay from the gravel road, they have seen my kayak from above, and due to the press article on Saturday they assumed it must be me, the lonely German kayaker…
They were teachers in an ourdoor education camp back in Te Oka Bay, with 30 students spending a week together. They asked if I would be up for a talk in front of them, and I thought yes, why not? At least some distraction from "waiting" only.
I got a ride in their van to the camp, and just felt sorry I had already eaten a boring noodle dish…that night everybody cooked something and put it on a buffet table to share, but I just managed to try at least a bit of a delicious pie for desert.
After dinner, everybody gathered around an open fireplace in the camp’s main building, and it was FAQ – and answering time :-)))
I think I enjoyed their engagement and interest! 30 young students aged 20+, the only question they didn’t ask me was my age…am I really already that far away from them??? :-)))
I found my way back to the tent in darkness later, enjoying a lovely clear southerly night with stars.

2 comments on “Progress Report 11/06/07 Tuesday – updated by Freya 09.11.07


Hi Freya.

If you ever get anywhere near to Birdlings Flat (close to Lake Forsyth),be very very careful!!,i have never seen waves dump as much as these.Take great care.


What an interesting looking peninsula! An old volcano? In any event, looks like interesting paddling. Take lots of pictures (video?), Freya!

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