Friday, August 14, 2015

Bonavista Bay - In and around the islands

On Thursday we left Burnside and camped at The Beaches.  Friday we paddled by way of St. Brendan's to the Flat Islands.  Saturday we decided to leave the tents up and paddle around the islands.  Flat Islands is a collective name for a grouping of flat-topped islands - Flat (Samson) Island, Berry Head, Cowards Island and North Island, Inside and Outside Battery Islands and Puffin Island.

I took all the gear out of my kayak and stowed it on the beach above the high water mark.  The kayak felt lively empty compared to its fully loaded weight.  We went northwest along Flat Island where a relic of previous settlement still stood and up on the hill there was still an old cellar.

The water was perfectly calm as its protected by the cluster of islands.

Paddling between North Island and Inside Battery a cemetery came into view as I came around the corner

Dean, Derek and I got out to have a look around and read some of the names and dates on the tombstones while the others ...

... carried on past but parried while we were ashore.

The three of us got back in our boats and the group carried on to the Coward Islands where a derelict house still stood.

We meandered along the shores of the Coward Islands, passed between them and Philpotts Island, crossed to Turners Island.  There we paddled between Turners and Willis Islands and entered a small cove.  Looking on the bottom we spotted good sized mussels.  Some of us jumped out of our kayaks into the waist deep water to collect some.

I stored the mussels I gathered behind my backband and when we thought we had enough we continued past alongside Willis and Ships Rock.  In another small cove we took the chance to top up water supplies.

We were in no hurry as we didn't have to set up camp at the end of the day.  Every channel invited a passage.

An inviting beach on Willis called us in and we set about making lunch.  Ron and Derek got water boiling so the mussels could be sampled.  Handfulls of mussels entered the pots but less than half opened in the boiling water.  They looked fine but were discarded for safety reasons.

After lunch our next destination was Bessy Island.

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