Welcome To Go Sea Kayak

Welcome To The Go Sea Kayak Blog...
This Blog is A Record Of My Personal Adventures And Wonderful Kayaking Lifestyle. It Is Also A Taster Of What You Can Expect If You're Adventurous Enough To Tag Along. Why Not Get In Touch And Join One Of Go Sea Kayaks Guided Trips On The Beautiful Mediterranean Island Of Sardinia, You Won't Regret it!

Thursday, 28 February 2013

Pussy Roll's...

Ok, so when its too cold outside & I'm being a bit of a pussy (hangs head in shame) I can always head to the pool for some rolling practice.
In fact I think its invaluable for honing your technique & building your confidance. I do still roll outside throughout the winter & its important to do so but usually two rolls in this weather is quite enough whereas in the pool you can just keep on rolling :)
The pool session is a regular Wednesday event run by my local club the Glam Boaters. You may notice a cameo appearance in the video of Andy one of the many special Olympians in our club & a mean roller.

The club is based in Cardiff, South Wales & always looking for new members ;)

Check the club website out here...

And the club facebook page here...

I'll be doing an outdoors skills video soon :)

Monday, 25 February 2013

Nav Training...

I was meeting up with Gareth today as he wanted to practice his navigation in preparation for a 4 star assessment.
We met up in Penarth & left a car there as we were paddling from Barry to Penarth, one way:)
Once at Barry we used Myvanwy as a mobile classroom as it was a little warmer than outside. I started by showing how I prepare a tidal plan & where I get the information from. As a brief overveiw of my plan I've listed the route, distance, weather, tidal port & local port tide times, flow start times, tidal estimated max speed, 50/90 rule & rule of twelfths for the tidal heights.
Gareth had brought a sheet with the tide times & tidal diamond info from a sea chart which is a good start.
Then we had a look at the route on the map & I asked him to show me where the potential hazards were which he managed fine. I also explained the difference between a tide race & an overfall as we'd be passing a few of these on route.
Finally before hitting the water I got him to take a bearing from the map for our first section of the trip & how to measure the distance with the roamer.
OK, onto the water & time to put it into practice.
A small error to start with so I took a bearing myself & we were underway & heading to Nells point.
Gareth took a successful bearing from the map to Bendricks rock & another from there to Sully Island. I think he's got it :)
From Sully Island to Lavernock I get him to try timing the distance. It was wrong as we were clearly in some tide but thats fine as he can see how the principal works which was the point.
From Lavernock we just chill & enjoy the paddle. The coastline is pretty featureless here anyway.
The renovation work on the pier ain't too pretty but i'm sure It'll look great when its finished.
I had a fab day playing as 'coach Taran' just wish I could afford to do my level 2 training or my 5 star assessment come to think off it. Maybe in a few months.
Heres the map of our route that I pinched of Gareths tracker page, Cheers Ga ;)

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Into The Dragons Breath...

I planned this trip on a wave of optimism, yes there was fog forecast but surely it wouldn't be bad & it'll clear early, or so I thought?
The plan was to meet with Noel & paddle out to Flat Holm then onto Monkstone lighthouse in the middle of the channel.
I arrived at Sully at 7AM in a real pea souper, I could barely see sully Island just opposite the causway. I was really glad that I had the foresight to charge the GPS batteries ready for the trip in anticipation of worsening conditions. The GPS also has the advantage of cross track error, instant vectors that is & makes for easy navigation across the tidal currents of the Severn.
I ain't been out with Noel for ages & he was keen to get on the water despite the conditions. This would be his first journey to Flat Holm.
Flat Holm coming into sight, just!...
It was an uneventful crossing though its tricky holding course when theres nothing at all to aim at. Evan night navigation provides plenty of targets but all we could see out here was fog.
Signs of life on the Island. I wonder if they could see us?

 A new location for Noel & another Island bagged :)

We round the South side of the Island so as to do a near complete circumnavigation.
I show Noel the obligatory cave to paddle into.
My turn, theres no swell here today so I go in deep, right to the back using my hands against the walls, roof, whatever I could grab.
I guess this is where the resident Peregrin falcons live. I don't believe this was here last year & I reckon their loving their new home. We only saw the one falcon today & I think Noel was pretty chuffed with that.
Time for a wander. We left the kayaks above the high tide line as the tide was still on the flood & we would quite like our kayaks to still be here when we return.
After a pleasant walk we discussed our options & decided to leave Monkstone for another day as the visibility had deteriorated quite considerably when I was hoping that it would have improved. I seal launched into the water & wished I'd put on my pogies, brrrr!
Thats Castle rock just behind Noel though its pretty static at the moment.
I decide we should leave at slack water about 15 minutes before high water. Its probably not totally slack but I know from experience that this is the time to go if you want to get to Lavernock.
Again it was tricky holding course with bugger all to aim off at but eventually Lavernock Outfall Buoy came into view on our left. We were well on track.

Finally, within 490 metres of land we made out the very faint shadow of Lavernock & could relax & ease off the pace a bit. I evan had time for a couple of rolls, a very bad idea, brrrr!

Then just a short & lazy paddle back to Sully for a cup of tea in Myvanwy.
It wasn't quite the paddle we had planned but you should always be ready to change your plans on the sea & we had a bloody awesome paddle anyway & it was great to get out with Noel again...

Monday, 11 February 2013

Severn Bore, The Rematch...

Bit of a dull blog post this, picture wise at least. Just as I was getting on the water I manages to knock off my Go Pro mount & as it was a stick on surf mount there was no fixing it :(
Paddling wise though it was an awesome morning on the water!

I met up with Andy at about 05:45, he was late as usual :P and I then managed to get us lost looking for the finish point where we were going to leave a car, I overshot the spot by several miles (whoops), well it was dark!
It was getting a bit nippy too as there was some light snowfall.
We did make it to Newnham in plenty of time though & tentatively made our way onto the water. Being my second time on the wave I knew I was in for a beating :oS
 Andy getting ready.
 Biting my fingernails.
The calm before the storm, or so I thought. Last time I was here the wave broke across the width of the river, not this time though as it only rose on the far shore?
Both me & Andy missed the wave as we were in the middle of the river, I managed to paddle hard across to the wave & hook into the second wave & it was rocking :D I got some lovely clean surfs with very little rudder & the bow burying into the trough, nice. In fact I think Andy & me did better than some of the surfers as the main wave broke on the shallows & Andy saw some go over as they hit bottom.
As I dropped back there was a maelstrom of messy waves following the bore & these were a hoot to surf in. Its quite amazing how the calm river prior to the bore can change so quickly & evan more cool is how the ebbing water so quickly turns to flood. The dynamics of the water are something very special here.
Interestingly the best waves of the day were further upstream quite sometime after the bore had passed. The shear speed of flow was kicking up some stunning standing waves & I had one of my best surfs ever on them. Sitting gently in the wave with little rudder my spare paddles were singing to me as they vibrated on the submerged bow & still the kayak kept surfing, awesome!
After that it all went calm though we were effortlessly paddling at about 9 knots at times I reckon.
 Time to settle in & enjoy the scenery.
And take a few pictures :)
Our start & finish points of our very awesome paddle.
Cheers for the company Andy ;)

Saturday, 9 February 2013

River Ely...

Today I was meeting up with Andy today for a freshwater paddle with the Glam Boaters so I could help in supervising the kids as it was a junior paddle, problem was only Arron & David turned up :oS
Easy day I guess!
We left one car at Penarth road in Cardiff & got a lift of Davids Dad to our put in at Peterston Super Ely. I was actually, despite the fresh water looking forward to this, its a beautiful stretch of countryside that you cant explore on foot due to access restrictions.

Andy got on first,
then we all followed with me bringing up the rear in a strange & rather short boat?
It was like exploring a hidden World for me.
Hmmmm, don't get obstructions on the sea, we saw a few of these.
We all had to climb over, yeehaa!

I don't know what this is or why it making Andy deranged but I saw quite a few of them?
A sunken speedboat, our best guess is that it got washed downstream from someones garden on the recent floods. There was evidence everywhere along the banks of recent & very high water levels.
We stopped at a few weirs along the way for some surfing, this spot though was my favourite.

All to soon we were ambling along the final stretch & being asked by the police if we'd seen a dead body, I kid you not!
I really should do some more of these river trips, their really not that bad :D
Our route for the day, not that far but thats fine by me :)

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Who's Bloody Idea Was This?

Just a quickie this one & unfortunately I couldn't apportion blame as it was my bloody idea though given the choice I would have organised this trip for the sunny Saturday we had instead, but no one was free then.
So here I was at Barry Old Harbour on a cold, wet & windy Sunday ready to meet up with some fellow Glam Boaters for something? weren't sure what till we met up but as they are relatively inexperianced it was gonna be a skills/confidence building based day.
We actually got Andy (above), the club coach out which was nice as he can take charge 
Coaxing them out towards a little swell, they weren't too keen? In font is Steve, nearest me is Chris & Peters in the yellow boat.
Andy had them paddling back & fore in the little waves to get a feel for surfing. Theres were bigger waves off the point & I snuck out a couple of times for a little play

Everyone was getting a little tired with all the wave chasing not to mention paddling in the high wind so we stopped on the other side of the harbour for a break.
before heading back to Myvanwy for a cup of tea. Though not before doing a couple of roles to end the day.
Not much of a paddle but the guys certainly benefited from it & I actually enjoyed myself too, spot on