Thursday, November 18, 2010

A Day on The Water 06/11

After a few hours sleep I am awoken by movement in the cottage.  Alice and Alex are making their move off to the Farmers Market I believe and Sarah is off to yoga.  Alex is trying to bludge some dry pants off Jan but no such luck, his only pair are wet too.  Once they leave I make my move from the couch and onto the air bed and proceed to pass out again.  After about an hour I am up again and told that the boys will here soon to go paddling.  Sweet as I better get my shit together.  Once Gregg and Cliff arrive I throw on the dry suit again and we hit the water.  A lot nicer for paddling today, still a good swell pushing through but little to no wind.

On the water and after a quick safety briefing we begin to paddle.  First stop is near the shoal I almost ran into last night and there is a bit of a wave breaking.  The other 3 have a wee surf session but I decide against it as I'm still getting used to being back in a kayak.  As I am floating around a seal pops his head up from the water to check us out.  From here we cruise out to check out a channel marker with the ominous dong if the bell attached.  It is quite a foggy day and I am waiting for something to appear out of the mist.  Gregg suggests that I climb up and jump off, he will take a photo.  I laugh to myself and think HELL NO! That kind of thing creeps me out.  So we paddle on around the outside of another island to find another rocky shoal where a pretty heavy wave is breaking., no surfing here.

We make our way to the inside of the island where it is a lot calmer and I get a chance to practice my technique a bit and get used to the boat, finally.  By now I have loosened my peddles as I was loosing the circulation in my feet again.  My feet feel better but it makes me a bit looser in the boat.  Think I will have to start doing yoga or something when I get back to NZ.  Greg and Cliff try to beach themselves on a surge but it doesn't work so well and Cliff ends up going over, luckily Gregg is there to help as he misses his roll.  Around the corner to a decent looking rock where Jan and Gregg jump onto the rocks and off into the water.  Got a cool pic of Gregg going head first off the rock.

We continue on to find what appears to be the only beach on this island and stop for a break and a Keiths.  After standing around for 15 minutes Jan is starting to get a chill as he is only in a wetsuit, poor guy. Probably have to start heading back he remarks, after checking the time.  So we start heading back towards the cottage when we find a nice clean looking wave.  We all get into it and start surfing. Everyone gets some nice rides including me.  i got rolled twice, first time I missed my roll and my spray skirt popped off so Jan had to help me away from the break and back into my boat.  Second time Gregg and I both rolled on the same wave and happy days this time I came back up.

Then I got a little cocky and caught a wave too far on the inside.  It was probably my best ride but it pulled me to the right and towards the rocks.  I tried to pull off the wave but couldn't so ended up side surfing the wave straight into a rock, BANG! Shit I hope the kayak is ok, I try to pull myself out from the maze of rocks but the next wave is on me and carries me closer to the shore and dumps me on some more rocks.  So I wait for the water to drop and jump out of my boat to walk it into the shore so I can inspect any damage and empty the water.  Jan is watching over me and asks if I am ok.  All good, i give him the signal.  The boat seems fine so I get back out there for another couple of waves (making sure I stay well left) before we start heading back.We have all had our share of knocks, it has been a fun day.

Gregg and Cliff head home while Jan and our grab a shower and get into some dry clothes.  Jan says his armpits are pretty raw from paddling all day in a wet suit.  I thank him again for letting me wear the dry suit.

Jeremy and Amy arrive to pick us up a short time later.  Tonight we are going for dinner at Sarahs aunt and uncle's house, John and Deb.  Should be interesting.  So we drive into town and arrive at their place, an apartment building.  It is quite fancy but definitely not my style.  There is about 16 people present for dinner and it is a nice evening.  I chat to some of the family and after a few hours and a few wines everyone is leaving so we head back to Prospect.  On our way back to the cottage we hear a plane or a helicopter flying around.  "Maybe they are looking for someone," Jan remarks.  The next morning we hear on national news that a 27 year old male was washed off the rocks at Peggy's Cove.  It is a bit spooky as that could have been us the night before, glad we came back when we did.

It is a quiet evening from here.  Jan and Sarah are spooning while I catch up on updating my blog.  I try to load some pics but it is taking ages and I am impatient so I give up.  Mum is online so we have a quick chat but she has to go as they are watching the rowing champs at Karapiro and a race is about to start. so we say goodbye.  Jan and Sarah have snuck off to bed by now ao I finish updating my blog, start watching a movie and then drift off to sleep.

Dong, Dong, goes the bell.

The attempted beaching didn't work out so well for Cliff (on the right)

Head first off the rock.

Good times in the surf.

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