Of all the days spent preparing for this challenge, today has to be one of the most pleasant. Jackie and I spent 4 hours in the sun today at Bardsey Sounds, just around the corner from Aberdaron. We were there to study the tidal flow to make sure we know exactly what time we need to pass this potentially dangerous headland on the end of the Llyn peninsula.
The idea was to watch the tide whilst it was running South, waiting to see how long it took to change direction and run north. Obviously our plan is to catch it whilst it’s heading South in the same direction as us. There’s no way we could paddle against it!
2 hours after high tide it finally started slowing down and then turned. This now gives us the confidence to know what time to start on Day 3, the day we round the end of the Llyn peninsula.
There are many dangerous parts to our challenge but 4 particular points we pass will really put our navigational and kayaking skills to the test. I have studied the timing of three of them to ensure we give ourselves the best chance of a safe passage. We will of course allow ourselves a margin of error of 20 minutes each side for safety reasons.
We are getting advice from local kayak clubs and a very experienced kayaker whom we have met over the last year. The funny thing is most of them are saying the same thing – “you’re going the wrong way!” Most people go south to north because of the prevailing south-westerly winds but we felt that if you’re going to donate some money, we’d better make it a REAL challenge!
We decided to make a day of It at Aberdaron so I packed a salad as a picnic to enjoy on the cliff tops. The high point of the day was soaking up the gorgeous weather and the scenery BUT the low point was when Jackie realised I’d forgotten the forks!! Ah well, that’s what fingers are for!!
I’ve got a busy Monday tomorrow, spare kayak to pick up and merchandise to get posted for Sea Shepherd UK and hopefully 2 hour of paddling as well. So there may not be a blog from me tomorrow, but maybe Mark will fill in for the day!