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    Romahome, sea kayak and Lundy Island

    There's a place I always wanted to go, somewhere where everyone says "hello", no cars, vans or stress and now I am home I want to go back. This is my story.

    I woke one morning and said "today is the day I go to Lundy".

    Lundy lies off the coast of North Devon, where the Atlantic ocean meets the Bristol Channel with nothing between it and America, a granite outcrop, three and a half miles long and half a mile wide. In the hubbub of the modern world it is a place apart, peaceful and unspoilt.

    So I took my sea kayak, Ecobezhig, on my C15 Romahome to Hartland Quay on the N Devon coast. After a delay in the gypsy cafe for breakfast and a longer drive than expected I arrived at The Hartland Quay Hotel car park. I paid my £2 for 24hrs parking and drove down the steep hill to park up.

    I looked out to sea and I could see Lundy in the distance 13 miles away but it was 3:30pm and I couldn't have started paddling before 4pm cos of all the luggage that has to go in the kayak such as food, cooker, tent, bedding, air matress and all the usual stuff one takes camping. So I decided that it would have taken about 3 1/2 hrs to paddle across the current and I would have arrived at about 7:30 ish in the dark. I didn't want to have to find a parking spot for my kayak and set up tent and everything else in the dark. I decided to stay overnight in the Hotel carpark, many others do it with the managers permission.
    I walked from the Romahome to the beach and marked my position on the
    GPS and called it Hart Q. This would be for my return trip if I had no visibilty on the way back and to steer a straighter course as possible across a strong current.

    I spent the evening in the http://www.hartlandquayhotel.co.uk/ where I chatted with disbelieving and sceptical people that some may have thought I was made doing an open sea crossing across a strong current on my own.
    That night, Wed 13th oct, I retired to the camper and set up my bed with the window overlooking the sea from the cliff edge of the car park.

    Thursday 14th 7:45am
    Awoke to waves crashing and an incoming tide, sea birds and other noises of a natural kind. I took a look out the window and I could see nothing apart from fog. I had intended to start paddling at 9am but with visibility down to 1/2 mile I couldn't chance it becuase I never had the laitude and longitude
    numbers for the landing beach at Lundy. I could have calculated the drift and windage and the heading I needed but when at point A if I was sat 12 dgress out I could miss Lundy by a couple miles. Instead I got on the internet and found the GPS figures I needed, thanks to the hotels wi-fi.

    I started paddling at 13:00 and 1/2 hour later I could see nothing. I called Swansea CC and gave my trip details and ETA.
    1 1/2 hours into the trip I could see Lundy and a huge ship from my port side. We came very close and some of the crew watched me from the stern deck as I crossed over its wake. At that point a jet fighter flew very low and the noise made me put my hands over my ears just as I was being washed around by the ship.

    I continued paddling and increased my stroke rate but heart beat up and back muscles screaming for rest.
    I could see Lundy rising from the fog ridden horizon. It took another 1 1/2 hours and a bit to get close to the cliffs there before rounding the headland to the safety of the beach. I could see people gathering on the shore looking out to me. I never really gave them another a thought as my mind was focused on getting ashore.

    A small narrow gap in the low cliff summoned me closer for a short cut. I took a risk with the large swell following and paddled through the narrow gap just a few feet wide. Halfway in I saw a huge seal on the rocks ahead looking back to me. I slowed my pace hoping it wouldn't jump in the water and ram me but then it jumped in from several feet high. As I tried to stop the next wave picked up my 18ft kayak and me and pushed us over the top of the seal, we never hit though. I prepared for a capsize and an eskimo roll by pushing my thighs into the braces in my cockpit. I passed safely and came out of the narrow confines of the short cut I'd taken. It seamed like a good idea at the time!

    Once out the other side I could see my landing beach and the small pier the MS Oldenburg uses to arrive and depart with its passengers. I paddled very fatigued the last 200 yards to the beach and landed on shore.

    To be contiued

    #2
    Wow, what a trip so far, can't wait to hear the next installment. Many times while messing about on the waves at Woolacombe have I longed to make the journey over to Lundy. I may have to follow your example, if I can get myself a suitable kayak.

    Comment


      #3
      Flipping Eck!!

      What an action man, looking forward to the next chapter. Thanks for telling us your story.
      Graham
      Did you know you can follow us on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter or you can visit us at our Website

      Comment


        #4
        I was gripped reading about this adventure. Rather you than me though, as I would be petrified crossing anything larger than a boating lake in a kayak!

        Comment


          #5
          That's simply amazing!

          Comment


            #6
            Romahome, sea kayak and Lundy Island

            Hi riosromahome, Wow what a read, I take my hat off to you, can't wait for the contiuation brave man.
            Gadgetman......... (Bryan)
            'Live without regrets'

            Comment


              #7
              What an achievement I am also looking forward to the next chapter, please don't make us wait too long I was really captured by your adventure.
              Jessie

              Comment


                #8
                I timed my landing on the beach with an incoming wave aiming as close a possible to the concrete slip. The kayak's bow slid up the shingle and I jumped out onto solid ground. I always get these beach landing right else you can get a soaking.
                As the adrenalin was still pumping around me a bit I dragged the kayak 50 yards to the slip knowing that as soon as I relaxed I would be hit with aches and pains.

                I was met on the beach head by an elderley man who pointed out a storage cave, he offered to help carry the kayak with me to it. I never mentioned how heavy it was till he lifted the front grab handle. "Wow......That's heavy" "oh yes, sorry I was going to say something about that". I had to take advantage of this kind gesture. We put the Ecobezhig down outside the cave and I thanked him for what he'd done. I also told him where I'd come from and the close encounter with the ship and big fat seal blocking my short cut.

                The kind man explained where the village was and then made his way up a long track and out of sight. I then called Swansea CC on the VHF and let them know I was ashore and OK. It wasn't long after that that when a nice blonde lady arrived with two children. "We saw you coming in from the sea" she said and then asked "what would I do if you capsized", "Well I'd roll back up again" "but what if a seagull came down and plucked out your eyes" she said " Well I'd be in trouble cos I'd not be able to see so I'd feel the wind on my cheeks and remember where Lundy was, or something like that"

                I walked up the track with a few items from the kayak, airbed, tent, tins of food, and dry clothes.

                It took 15 minutes to get to the Marisco Tavern. Sweat dripping off me and fatigue slowing my speech and thoughts. Once inside I made myself known to the staff and then paid the £5 boat landing fee. I wondered if I would have to have paid if I swam the last 50 feet.

                The time now was 16:45 and I put up my tent within the shelter of a barns' granite wall. So I had paddled the 14 miles across the current in 3hr 5mins but total sea distance was more like 16 miles. Once the £9.99 Argos tent was up I walked back down the track to my kayak in the cave to recover some more items. Then I walked back to the tent feeling rather delerious.

                I had my dinner in the tavern, Lundy Lamb meat balls, rice pudding and 3 pints of shandy. It became known around the pub what I had done to get to Lundy and was then presesnted with a visitors book for sea kayakers. There are other books for yachtsmen, climbers, runners and bird watchers. I flicked through the pages of the sea kayakers book and noticed there were no solo paddlers. I started my entry with my paddling name, Horis Karloff. Thursday 14th Hartland Quay to Lundy by Horis Karloff....................


                By 7pm I retired to the tent, to perform my next task, inflating the heavy duty airbed. After blowing my lungs contents into the valve and almost fainting I sat down on a timber stump and surveyed my dusk surroundings. I thought to myself "I've done it" with a few tears in my eyes.

                By 7:40pm I was lying within my Lidll sleeping bag with a nice warmish blanket covering any gaps. I fell asleep sometime after. By 11pm I woke with a lump under my butt. I thought there's nothing like an airbed to give me some comfort to sleep on. However this airbed was nothing like and airbed anymore, it had gone done. I also needed a pee but I was afraid to go outside in case I started shivering but I had an idea. The zipper was on my left side and so was a large plastic mug for my tea but now it had another use that rhymed with tea.........oh bless this mug!

                Friday 8am.

                I looked out of the tent entrance at the start of my first full day on Lundy. I thought today is the day I walk around the island. I was also thinking of the possibilities of an amphibious Romahome but then no cars allowed here.

                I cooked myself some ready break and made a cup of tea forgetting what other use it had the night before. Once I'd eaten I started my trek along the main track north out of the village. I was at peace and wanted nothing.

                to be continued.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Thanks for this, it is great bedtime reading, better than my current book. Off to bed now, your tale has exhausted me.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    As I walked along the track my surroundings opened up into an expanse of hinterland, like a mini Dartmoor. I could see in the distance ponies, sheep, ruined granite built houses and other buildings. To my right I could see North Devon and as I looked back Cornwall was some 20 miles further south west. I could see some of the islands staff working on a stone wall rebuilding the damage from years of winter weather. The isladers, in partnership with the National Trust, work hard to protect and preserve Lundy. However it was clear that this beautiful island cannot be preserved with just the help of the locals. There's so much that gets done and so much more work to do. I could see the staff are heavily reliant on external support.

                    After 20 minutes of walking at a leasurely pace I came to the Quarter wall and its gate. There were 2 others Half wall and in the distance was Three Quarter Wall. I realised these were to keep certain animals in a particular area. I passed through the gate closing it carefully behind me with the chained hook and continued on my mini voyage of discovery.

                    My thoughts wandered as I strolled along, thinking how I managed to get across this stretch of open sea, 14 miles of hard paddling. I walked to the cliff edge and sat on what could have been a purpose built seat on the granite cliff top. I sat down looking over to Hartland Quay and wondering if my Romahome was OK, of course I knew it was. My little home from home complete with cooker, sink and double bed. I thought of the Bristol Balloon Fiesta too and how I'd been unwell with a pain in my side. The visits I'd had from Graham and Pauline and that I was not at my best to talk for long and also Dolly and Pat who came to visit with their dog in the rain. Their little demountable, how similar to my old Bedford Bambi or the Rocking Horse as I first found out on the M6 as I was overtaken by an Arctic. And why had I only been to one rally, when is the next? and the reason for not going to Minehead. Why is Teigngrace cancelled. Will I go to one before the end of the year. I also thought about this month of October, the first time in years to have 5 Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.............strange. I thought of the 6 weeks I had just spent in prison for putting a bad policemans name and address on the internet after all he had harrased me so that was OK for me to harrass him.

                    My internal scan just 3 days before in hospital came to my mind and that otherwere there were no visible problems, gall bladder had no stones but spleen enlarged. Still I'm 46, fit healthy and a Catholic most Saturdays.

                    I couldn't be sat there with self pity as this was a time when I was away from the grips of modern life, stresses and pollution, injustices, polliticians saying one thing and doing the other. Just one look around me was enough to distract my thoughts from the negative to the beauty of my surroundings. At least I wasn't trapped down a mine, in prison or hospital.

                    I would think Lundy is a place where nobody is ever bored. Every day is an adventure with a wealth of things to do; walking, climbing, snorkelling, painting, birdwatching, letterboxing, the archaeology and its unique flora and fauna. I think of flora as a margarine from plants so if I'm right then fauna must be the animals.

                    Another 10 minutes passed and I stood up and started my stroll to the track and onward to the north of the island. About a mile away I could see a most odd looking building. From where I was I'd say it was one floor, hexagonal shaped house almost like a lookout with a tall chimney and encircled by a stone wall. I diverted off the track to take in this building but as I was about to walk through the gate to what I thought was a deserted house I could see a fella inside topless and possibly starkers. I deverted myself kept walking and only looked back after a couple hundred yards down the path. I later found out this building was called Tibbetts. It was built of pale granite to a funtional and satisifying design, in 1909 on the second highest point of the island. It was about 1 1/2 miles from the village along the main track and is remote and simple as anyone could wish. It is said that 14 lighthouses can be seen on a clear night fron there.

                    I kept going north to as far as I could and on my own. I could have stripped off naked and screamed as loud as possible but no one would have heard or seen me,................HHHhhhhhhhhhhhMMMMMMMMMmmmmmmmm mm????? 2011???

                    Nearing the north of the island and clearing the gate of Three Quarter Wall an hour and a half had passed since I left the village. There was something in the back of my mind that I should have done there but could not quite remember. Never mind I thought there's so much more to occupy my thoughts here as I slowly drew into sight the north lighthouse.

                    At the top of a granite staircase I could look down an see the building with its glass dome on top. Trinity House owned the light house but I wondered if I would be allowed to have a look inside. I soon found out after descending the 75 steps. I saw a fella who looked more like a painter and decorater. I said "excuse me, is it OK to have a look inside"? " sorry it's private here and I'm only a painter and decorater" I should be a MP I thought!

                    Just back from the lighthouse there's a small rail track going 100 yards to the edge of the cliff. It was rusty from years of unuse but it was obvious to me it was for the keepers supplies from the sea. There was also a large copper lid covering something concrete in structure. I just had to lift it and take a look. There was nothing undernieth apart from a cover and a padlock securing it down. I did wonder how much the lid would make at the scrappers.

                    I climbed the grass bank from where I was instead of taking the track to the steps. At step one I counted un, then deux, trois, quatre, cinq, six, sept, huit, neuf, dix all the way to 70 then got confused. Pleased to be at the top I started my walk back down the main track heading south to the village.

                    In the distance I could see a couple walking toward me. When closer I saw they were in their sixties of seventies. We all stopped had a chat about the island and then it was bought to my attention that the shop closes at 12:30 on a Friday. It was now 11:45 and I had 3 miles between us and 45mins to buy some food, I knew there was something. I said my goodbyes and started running down the track for a few minutes till out of sight then stopped. I was puffing and panting. I never really was a runner although I had been British Weighlifting champion in 1999 my legs were for short bursts only. I continued jogging and walking back through the Three Quarter Wall Gate and then the Halfway Wall Gate and passing through the Quarter Wall Gate at about 12.20.

                    The village ahead seamed quiet and the other visitors were doing more or less what I was doing, just seeing the island on foot. The shop was closeby and I was in need of something to eat and drink.

                    As I walked inside the shop I noticed it was well stocked with all the normal groceries, fresh fruit, vegetables and fresh bread straight from the freezer the night before. Apparantly when visitors book their accomodation, they are sent information about the shop's regular stock and invited to complete an order form for other items- such as special cuts of meat or unusual dietry needs. I know on Fridays I am usually a vegetarian but I had Ravioli waiting in my tent, this I had bought from the .99p shop in Paignton and had just been dead weight in my Romahome for 5 months. It had been dead weight in my kayak too. I bought my items inc a large bottle of diet coke that expanded like an exploding bomb once in my belly. Thank God my ears are water tight unfortunatly not my nostrils and my mouth, I should have drunk it more slowly.

                    Back at the tent I made myself a small seating area by my small gas cooker. A tree stump, tile slate and a piece of timber, this would be my kitchen. Of course I'd rather have my Romahome but that wasn't an option. The time was now 12.40pm

                    to be continued

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I'm loving this, keep them coming. Have you ever thought about putting it all in a book? Marvellous job.
                      Graham
                      Did you know you can follow us on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter or you can visit us at our Website

                      Comment


                        #12
                        A great read which I'm thoroughly enjoying and looking forward to the next installment...

                        Comment


                          #13
                          So I filled my tummy with all the usual stuff like Ravioli, yoghurt, more diet Coke and then decided to go and look at something else I saw earlier not too far away.

                          In 1819 Trinity House proposed the erection of a lighthouse on the rocky summit of Chapel Hill. The builder was Joseph Nelson, the engineer was Daniel Alexander who was architect of Dartmoor Prison, with James Turnbull as Superintendent of Works. The granite tower was 96 feet high with the keepers houses adjoining, the cost being £10,277. Two lights were shown from the tower; the lower was a fixed white light; the upper was a white quick flashing light, every sixty seconds. This was an innovation in lighthouse optics. However, the light revolved so quickly that no period of darkness was detectable between the flashes so in effect this also appeared as a fixed light. They were shown from elevations of 508' and 538' respectively and from 8 km (5 miles) away the two lights merged into one.

                          It was this appearance of being a fixed light that contributed to a disaster in November 1828. The ship La Jeune Emma travelling from Martinique to Cherbourg arrived in Carmarthen Bay in thick fog and mistook the Lundy lights for the fixed light of Ushant and went onto the rocks. Of the nineteen people on board thirteen were lost including a niece of the Empress Josephine. The lighthouse was abandoned in 1897 due to the continual complaints that the light was completely lost in fog. It is now holiday accommodation. Where the actual light used to be connected there was now a deck chair.

                          So up the 147 steps and into the main glazed light area at the very top I went. I sat down in the deck chair and looked out to south Wales, North Devon, North Somerset and North East Cornwall. I stayed for ½ hour or so but I couldn’t see my Romahome at Hartland Quay. one thing I do need is good pair of binoculars then I’ll be able to see everything. Trouble is a good pair costs over £5 these days.

                          I spent the rest of Friday just wandering around and chatting to various people, usually about my kayak trip across the tidal 14 miles from Hartland. I made an entry into the sea kayakers logbook of my day’s activities and by night fall I had retired to my tent and my airless airbed and that magic cup.

                          Saturday16th Oct

                          Today I decided to go for a paddle around the island in my kayak. After walking down the track to the cave it was relief to see that certain items I had left in the open were still there untouched. I emptied the kayak of anything I did not need and carried the 27 kilo boat the short stretch to the water. Within a couple of minutes I was already moving through the water at 6 mph towards the short cut I’d taken on my way over. No seals this time to worry about.

                          On the south west corner of Lundy from the sea it’s possible to look up and see the south lighthouse and the cliffs being eroded by the sea. Further up the west side of the island there are caves 200ft deep. Another had a beach at the back of it so I went closer for a look. As I paddled into the cave and the darkness came down I felt a sense of unease. There was someone or something else deep inside the cave. It isn’t easy to turn an 18 ft sea kayak around quickly, especially with a rudder acting like a keel at the back of the boat. My heart started to beat a bit quicker and I knew that going any further into the cave would be a stupid thing to do not knowing what was making the ever increasing groaning sound. So I paddled further into the cave frightened and breathing rather quickly. My eyes had adjusted to the darkness and then I saw it just ahead of my bow.

                          A disturbingly loud howl came from its mouth and then a ladies scream came from my mouth. A huge seal was just feet from me splashing around in the water warding me off. I could see on the beach there were two tiny pup seals. I never tried to turn cos it was easier to back paddle using my rudder to keep me of the cave sides.

                          The light improved as I went astern towards the cave entrance and the open sea, I was out and I shan’t go in a Lundy cave again but it seamed like a good idea at the time. As I headed further up the west side of the island and away from my scary friend I could see the water was rough near some rocks. Waves coming in rather fiercely that could smash me onto the rocks and do some serious damage to my kayak. The area of white water ahead was to be avoided in order to stay safe. So I paddled directly towards it instead. I don’t mind getting hit by waves I just don’t like getting wet hair. I paddled flat out and timed my crossing over the rocks so I wouldn’t get hit by the breakers. Luckily only one wave hit me and knocked me 30 ft side ways towards the shore. I braced with my left paddle blade leaning on it with my bodyweight to stay upright. Once clear I paddled flat out again and clear of the submerged rocks. I thought that was a good idea at the time too!

                          Just a little further along the west side of Lundy there was a large arch that was paddle able if timed right. The swell was filling the area with water and then emptying it once it had gone. I could see rock exposed and then covered again when the water rushed back in. I sat there no really knowing the sequence of waves as they seamed to change. Oh Hell, I just go for it so with the rocks exposed I started to paddle and by the time I got there they were covered again with me going over the top and out the other side.

                          Once clear of that danger I had to find something else to scare me. I could see some people on the cliff top 400 feet high. I knew who it was too, the blonde lady with the two children and some friends. They waved down to me and I waved back up to them. It was nice to be waved at cos most canoeist usually get a one finger salute from the other water users.

                          Just ahead was the north Lighthouse I’d been to the day before on foot. This time I would paddle past it but there was a problem around the other side of the north headland. It was the sea hitting the rocks and bouncing back out again with some force. It’s fairly easy to handle big seas on one side of the kayak but when there are waves hitting both sides and a strong head wind it make it tricky. I thought about turning back as it was a little risky to continue so close to the rocks and being tossed and turned by 6ft waves.

                          I committed myself to continuing around the headland into the rough seas and a north easterly wind. As long as I keep paddling I have a good chance of getting out of that rough section alive. Crash from the left and crash from the right. My bow being pushed with force in all directions. My toes were working the rudder and I paddled hard. Spray getting my new hair cut wet. Well I cut it myself with my dog’s electric trimmer.

                          Once out the other side of the rough 200 yards or so I could continue with a bit more security. I no longer needed to push my legs into the thigh braces and I could afford to let the kayak move under me more. I now had the seas on my port stern but was more happy to be away from the rough stuff behind. If I had paddled further out and away from the shore before turning round the head I would have been perfectly OK but that would have taken 2 extra minutes paddling and leaving me no memories for the future.

                          I continued along the east side of Lundy observing the various birds and seals that kept clear of me, it was still rough but no so rough I couldn’t stop paddling for a few moments. There was a diving boat at anchor just in a small bay in the shelter. I paddled past and said “hello” but they may have though I was insane being out on my own.

                          I saw a ships wreck or at least its bow and a few hundred tons of steel washed onto a beach, all brown with rust. It must have been there for years and years. I didn’t go too close but thought the scrappers would give me a good price for the metal, only I needed a bigger boat. It’s thought that many ships had run aground on Lundy because of the confusing light house being too high up and invisible when fog sets in.

                          Ahead I saw the ship that brings normal people to the island, MS Oldenburg. About 150 feet long and fairly fast through the water. I also saw a few dolphins further out but decided not to investigate and come ashore at the beach. Where I live in south Devon I had surfed on the back of dolphins several times and knew that nothing other than that could match those memories.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            As I paddled into the beach I timed a perfect surf landing coming in with a wave. My bow went up the shingle and I pulled my spray deck release cord and started to get out. Trouble was that I’d taken too long to get out and I was pulled back out again just as I put my foot in the water to make contact with the bottom. I lost my balance and went in the water. Thankfully no one saw so I grabbed the kayak and pulled it out of the water and up the beach.

                            Two old ladies of about 70 had walked down to se me and say hello. I said” you never saw what I just did I hope” “Oh you mean when you fell in”? Oh dear I was seen and they must have thought I was a beginner.

                            I carried it back to the cave in its lightened state and noticed there were 2 more sea kayaks inside. One an Epic 18 and the other a Valley Avocet in plastic. Just outside a fella said they’d paddled in from the mainland and then sprinted up the hill. I could handle paddling in from the mainland but sprinting up the hill was distressing.

                            I made my way back up the track to the village and my tent to be met by my new neighbours. Andy and Scotty had paddled the same route as I has 2 days before. Their faces covered in white drying salt proved they’d been in spray bound seas coming over. After a chat they went off to walk around the island. I sat down again by my tent and made a cup of tea, drank some diet coke and had a reduced price out of date strawberry yoghurt.

                            Thinking back to my 2 hour paddle round the island I had seen seals, dolphins, sea caves, a ship wreck, divers and rough stretches of water with a few near misses. All these things go into my mind and stay there for years. Only problem was that I’d left my camera in my Romahome back on Hartland Quay.

                            After a while I decided to go back to the lighthouse and see the sunset from 497 feet above sea level. So up the 147 steps I went and into the deck chair I sat. Soon after a elderly fella and a little girl and a young man came up to look out. They were staying in the house below for a few days. The little girl became quite talkative and seemed to latch onto me for conversation. I explained about there being letter boxes around the island and that one of them was right below us in a small plastic box waiting for someone to make an entry. The elderly man went back down the steps to the house leaving the little girl and her cousin at the top with me. She asked if we could play in the garden but I had to say it wasn’t really a good idea as I was a stranger “but you’re my friend” she said. Oh God, this could be awkward and with her cousin up there hearing everything that she was saying. I waited for them to go down again as I wanted to see the sunset but only the young fella went down. This put me on the spot because in this hysterical media driven age about paedophiles and the like I realised I had to go down.

                            I said let’s go down now and write a note in the letter box and rubber stamp it. So we did just that but the young man, her cousin was out if sight. The little girl led the way down chatting away and still insisting that her parents would be happy if we played on the grass. I was wrong the other two had left her with me and wrong that I had to miss the sunset because of it and being put in an embarrassing situation like that.

                            Once out of the light house I said to the little girl “I have to go now” but she was insistent on staying with me. As I walked away her cousin called her back again. I climbed over the style and started my walk back to the camp site. She came running over to me and told me she had no one to play with. I waited for her cousin to call her back again and as I walked away yet again she came running towards me. I said “you have to go, your parents should be worried” and she left me to go back to my tent. I walked slowly but with tears in my eyes. Memories from lonely times when I was a child of her age. I never saw her again.

                            Back at the tent again I sat down for some time and chatted to various people about anything and also to the welder in the barn who was a keen canoeist. The blonde lady came along and said she’d seen me from the cliffs and had waved. I too had waved to them I said.
                            That night I had missed the sunset from the lighthouse but went into the pub for dinner. Andy and Scotty came in too to fill in an entry in the sea kayakers logbook. Not too long later I retired to my tent in the dark and lay on my airless bed.

                            Sunday morning, today I will start paddling around 13:00 hrs and try do the crossing in under 3 hours. In the meantime I would go for a walk and see the west side of lundy that I’d missed on the Friday. So off I went on my walk with a few things to eat although I’d eaten a full breakfast in the Marisco Tavern.

                            I found the remains of a house over looking the sea and the Devon coast where I could sit down for 30 minutes. I thought that maybe this place could be rebuilt again with enough money. I’d love to stay there for a few days. I walked to the west side and again sat down to look over the sea. I saw mountain goats with large horns on their heads. There were other animals but not sure what they were and some large caterpillars. Soon I walked back to the tent but via the Old Light house hoping not to see anyone from earlier. Once back at the tent I started packing things away in to my large Ikea bag.

                            I carried all my stuff back down the track to the cave and the beach wondering if I was doing the right thing by leaving a place I loved and the people so friendly. Some of them had shaken my hand and wished me a safe crossing.

                            On the beach I had packed my kayak but with less weight this time. My airless bed was now in the bin, The Ravioli had been through me and was probably now in the sea too.
                            I had my kayak lined up almost in the water when Andy and Scotty came down to attend to their kayaks. Andy noticed I had left a smoke signal on my rear deck so that went into a small storage hatch by my waist. I said my good byes and pushed my self forwards into the water.

                            I paddled hard and never stopped paddling for 45 mins when I looked back. My GPS was telling me to paddle more west of my destination but that was due to the incoming tide and after a while I was heading towards Hartland Quay. It took 2hrs 50 mins to get back. I had looked back a few more times cos I knew that the other two were going to return soon after I had left but I saw no one.

                            I arrived at the beach at Hartland Quay and was met by some people wondering were I had come from. I looked back and I still could not see the other two. Eventually I loaded my kayak onto my beloved Romahome and packed all the wet stuff inside the sink.

                            As I drove up the road from the Quay I looked out and saw Andy and Scotty in the distance. See this http://www.ukriversguidebook.co.uk/f...hp?f=4&t=69298

                            Before I lost sight of the sea I took one final look across to the distant horizon and I could see Lundy standing out in the early evening sun looking rather lonely.

                            So these were my thoughts on just one of my trips and I may go back in almost any weather if I feel the need for peace. However it was also nice to be in my Romahome with all the comforts it brings.

                            The End

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Thank you for the very interesting read. I hope you have it all down in black and white. As Graham says, it would make a good book.
                              Jessie

                              Comment

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