Sunday, 26 February 2012

Macclesfield Canal - 25th February 2012

Clarke Lane <> Higher Poynton Marina
Out in 54:32, back in 56:02
Funny, seemed to be a headwind in both directions!

Monday, 20 February 2012

Walney Island - 19th February 2012

I'd planned to paddle on the sunday, but wasn't quite sure what to do - then a timely post from Will Herman appeared on the NWSK forum inviting paddlers to a Walney island circumnavigation. So a fairly early start saw us meeting at Roa Island at 9am to catch the N going tide in the channel.
Approaching Walney Bridge
It was a lovely sunny morning, though the wind was still fairly strong, kicking up small waves as we headed through Barrow docks. In the distance we could see the snow capped hills of the Lake District.

We stopped and ate an early lunch in the dunes at the N tip of the island, for this would be the last chance of shelter before we were exposed to the strong NW breeze.

Just about to round the N tip
Will with the snow capped Lake District in the distance
We set off refreshed, but with a bit of anxiety since we were expecting conditions to be pretty rough on the W side. 
As we rounded the N end we could see confused water in the distance as the waves from the exposed sea to the NW were breaking in the mouth of the channel, but when we got to the open water the waves weren't too big and there was just some small surf to contend with.

We carried on down the W side of the island, occasionally riding the odd wave towards the beach that was now exposed by the outgoing tide. Another quick stop to stretch our legs and we then entered the more sheltered water at the S end of the island accompanied by some of the resident seals.

On re-entering the Walney channel, the castle on Piel Island dominated the view with the Lakeland backdrop adding to the atmosphere.

Piel Castle
A final push across the channel saw us land by the lifeboat station and a fairly long carry up the muddy beach back to the cars. Feeling pretty cold in the last sun of the day, it was nice to get all the kit sorted and the boats loaded in time to nip off for a well earned pint in the Concle Inn discussing the merits of wood burning stoves.

Landing by the lifeboat station
Approximately 34km paddled in just under 6 hours paddling. Weather sunny, but strong NW breeze (F3-4), dropping towards the later afternoon. Paddlers Will/Dave/Tim/Chris/Brian.

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Bollington Pool - 3rd February 2012

Last pool session of the winter for Gavin and me. Spent my half hour rolling on both sides and trying a few hand rolls - only about 50% success rate still! Gavin tried to roll for the first time and was doing very well - good setup position, but not quite getting the sweep right.