Sunday, 4 April 2010

Lunna Ness and K.O. in Round 4, Loch of Voe

Clare's not been out along Lunna Ness before so after a lot of driving yesterday we decided to go somewhere a bit closer today and just have a mosey about. The weather was looking uncertain but bright, so we just packed the requisit flask and sarnies and took Fern along for the ride too.

First stop was the long ayre near the end of the road that goes out into Boatsroom Voe a good way. I thought I'd get right out to the end of it, and could have if I wanted wet feet, so it still remains a challenge for the next low ebb and a pair of wellies!

So close, but yet so far. If it wasn't for the bouldery bed I'd have taken my boots off.

We had a mooch around the coast there before driving back towards Lunna House, which has a history that includes the Shetland Bus of the Norwegian resistance movement in World War 2.

Here it is, with a raised roadway that leads from the mound that is the remains of St Mary's Church up to it. Lunna Kirk stands nearby.

We pottered about, watched a couple of oyster catchers doing what birds do at this time of the year and then went to have our picnic near the old lime kiln on the bay to the west, before driving back via the playground at Vidlin.

The weather was still holding up so I decided to make a dash to get out again on the Loch of Voe in the scull boat.

I'd adjusted the paddles for more cross-over of my hands after the last time out but it proved to make matters worse and I was hardly able to twist my knuckles up to feather the blades. So after a short scull out it was back to the car for a screwdriver to adjust the oar buttons again. This time to leave the minimum amount of oar inboard of the rollocks.

That worked a treat. The wind had got up though and wasn't helping me scull steadily. I thought I was going for a dunk at one point when a passing car caught my attention for no particular reason and I crabbed leaving me teetering on the edge of going in, but I finally relaxed and settled the boat.

After a while I thought I'd try the next stage of just using my legs but, possibly as this is a sliding rig not sliding seat, it seemed pretty unproductive. So I started to use a bit of leg with my arms, and then a bit more, and before I knew it I was actually doing a full stroke and even managing to correct my course while sculling.

Success and a K.O. to me in round 4! It was a real buzz.

Having said that, I'm still away off being confident to go anywhere other than in this little puddle of a loch. No 4.5 mile boat race for me, yet. The sculling action is pretty tiring and also painful for my left wrist, but now I seem to have her all set up for me I should find it easier next time. Think I'm going to have to do some reverse wrist curls in the gym to give that wrist movement a bit of work.

Every time I stopped paddling to get the mobile out to take a picture the oars dragged her to a halt otherwise I'd have some nice pictures of her smooth silent wake. Hopefully next time Clare and Beren will come and take a few pictures of me out there.

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