Saturday, November 10, 2012

Paddling in the shadows

The winds today were forecasted to be west 25 knots with gusts to almost 40.  Not the most appetizing but I formulated a plan.  Carry the kayaks onto the ferry to Bell Island, paddle in the shadow of the 200 foot cliffs and surf ride the west wind and waves back to Portugal Cove.

Dean and I caught the 9:20 sailing.  As chance would have it, we were the only kayaks on the ferry *lol*

We carried the kayaks a short distance from the ferry to a small beach where we put-in.

The winds may have been west but they wrapped around the island and were more like southwest as we approached The Beach.

Below and for a distance above the ferry terminal the island runs almost southwest to northeast and right in the wind.  Soon we were at Pulpit Head where the land bends towards the north and we were out of the wind. 

Dean on the south side of Long Harry Head.

And, on the north side of Long Harry Head where we got a little surprised by rebounding waves.  We had paddled up to Redmonds Head to check out the waves blowing in from the west before turning back under the cliffs and in the wind shadow.

As we came round Pulpit Head again heading south we lost the protection of the land and we were face and eyes into the wind.  The paddle became a slog.  We had planned to continue to Lance Cove but thought better of it and took out on a beach north of the ferry terminal that offered protection from the wind.

The original plan was to paddle and surf the 4.5 kms back to Portugal Cove but discretion being the best part of valour, we elected to catch the ferry back instead.  The approaching ferry with waves crashing over the bow reassured us that we had made the right decsion.

A short paddle but we were out.  As we disembarked carrying the kayaks in tandem we joked with staff that we had brought our own life boats.


  1. Great surroundings. Those cliffs were just great!

  2. Yes Mia, paddling underneath its a long way looking up. These rocks were laid down during the Ordovician between 485 and 443 million years ago. That fact and the height makes me feel small.

    Tony :-)

  3. Fantastic day Tony, we often take a ferry glide too!


  4. It was pretty much the only option to paddle on Sunday Douglas. I was somewhat disappointed that we couldn't surf the waves back but better safe than cause a kayaking incident and end up on the news *lol*

    Tony :-)