Sunday, May 27, 2012

Faster than the speed of life

Settling in

Pete was the only person to show up in Torbay for a paddle to the community of Flatrock.  That was a surprise because usually its not hard to get at least a few more people together.  Anyway, that was fine and by 10:00 Pete and I settled into our boats and headed north.

In the shade

It was tranquil when we left Torbay as we paddled under the protective cliffs that sheltered us from the NW winds.  It didn't last long as the wind turned into our faces.  We ducked into little coves to avoid the wind where possible.

The bright sunshine gave a false colour to the back slates of the St. John's Formation.

In the swell

Pete waited for his chance to bolt through the space between the cliff face and the offshore rock.  Waiting, waiting ...

And through

... and through.  I waited for my chance but I went round so as not to let too much distance get between us as Pete went on.


As suddenly as Pete got through the opening, the rocks changed from black slates to the reddish sandstones and conglomerates of the Signal Hill Formation.

Inside passage

Nearing Flatrock the winds dropped unexpectedly as we paddled in this protected channel.


The water got just a little lumpy as we rounded Flatrock Point and entered Flatrock harbour to have lunch.


After washing down our sandwiches we were back in the boats in anticipation of the wind bowing us back to Torbay.  We got our bows pointing south with the bird dropping stained cliffs to starboard and the ride began.

Entering Torbay

We both got some nice surf rides.  When the bow digs in and water washes up the foredeck and onto the spray skirt you know you got a good ride going.  The GPS confirmed it.  Our fastest speed in front of the wind was 15.8 kms/hr (8.7 knots).  We covered the 6 kilometers in 45 minutes for a thrilling ride of 8 kms/hr average.

We had a little bit of work paddling into the wind but were rewarded on the return leg.  Excellent paddle Pete and thanks.


  1. Thanks Brian. I was grateful for Pete's company and surprised no one else joined us.

    Tony :-)