3/5 Day 13 – Saltee crossings

3/5 Day 13 – Carnsore to Hook

Its Friday, the13th day, and a spell of settled weather and strong tides (‘the sluice’) have got us round the corner where the Irish sea squeezes out between Pembroke and Carnsore
Having effortlessly knocked a hole in my hull in completely calm water last night, expertly patched up with Ritchie and Rob’s help, we gingerly shepherded the boats down the burn from the water meadow we had camped in.
Gentle winds and neapish tides meant an easy turn and a decision… to bash round the the miles of sickle curving beaches, watched by ranks of wind turbines…. or get onto the open sea and cross to the Saltee islands?
We went for the crossing and 2 hours or so we’re approaching the fascinating combination of tides and submarine  ledges that are the Saltee islands.
As we clipped along from little to great Saltee we watched the tides scamper over Sebberts Bridge… all benign but not a place to be in wind over tide!A quick look around this bizarre kingdom (complete with declaration of kingship and signs directing one ‘to the throne’, along with the pones prohibiting camping, anywhere, for ever, ye ken … ) I’m not sure his highness Michael the first would cope with the Scottish Outdoor Access code!

In bright sunshine we reckoned we were pretty far away from everything and opted to head west in an increasing W/NW breeze, seeing if conditions would stay good for us to make Hook head, whose lighthouse beckoned temptingly. After 90 mins we took stock, pretty much on route, steady rather than fast, and keeping upwind enough to keep windward of the head. So we bashed on for another couple of hours. We had just decided to keep trudging across the bight when the Rosslare Coastguard updated the small craft weather warning, so I reckoned we ought to believe it & head inshore in case the N6 appeared as advised. We had crossed most of the bight but took a dogleg and a 30 minute shove saw us into Sandeel Bay. And of course the wind stayed pretty much as before.

That’ll do we reckoned and give us a reasonable kicking off point in the morning for Tramore, where Mick O’Meara lies in wait, “none shall pass”, (clearly the Sir Ian McKellen of Tramore) . We look forward to putting a face to the name behind a remarkable string of paddling achievements and endless encouragement of others… including us.

14 thoughts on “3/5 Day 13 – Saltee crossings

  1. A long day! Rounding Carnsore Point must have seemed a significant milestone in your voyage – turning the corner from east coast to south coast! Good going! Only 3 more sides to go!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Happy Birthday Ritch xx Hope the weather is kind to you today and there’s a bit of cake for you at Tramore! 🍰🎉 Love from all of us in Grantham! xx


  3. Happy birthday today, Ritchie……if you read this on 4th May! I don’t think you’ll need to work too hard to blow out your candles. The wind will do that quite nicely!


    1. Thanks Mike. Just a half day’s paddling today. Being entertained with some more very generous Irish hospitality this afternoon and evening. Kayaks safely stored by the RNLI.


  4. Great miles and progress in-spite of structural challenges! Just think, you could make a new career out of guest appearances at 5 Star Assessments, the living proof that all that practice at repairing holes under the seat does have foundation in reality. Well done that team.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Colin. A most excellent birthday indeed. No phone reception by tent tonight so today’s blog update will be delayed. Walked inshore 1k to get reception and make a few calls.


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