Sunday, 4 July 2010

Swining to Lunna Kirk, an interesting family kayak!

We'd hoped to do this little one way kayak yesterday but got caught up with friends, walks and farmers markets. The wind was also pretty high and chop too much in Swining Voe to take the family kayak out. Getting up this morning the wind seemed slightly less and as it was to be following us, with the exception of when we had to cross the Voe, we decided to go for it. It was forecast to get wet later but for now it was dry...

Logistics for this were a bit of a pain. Drop the kayak at the head of Swining Voe, drive both cars to Lunna Kirk, leave mine there and return to Swining Voe in Clare's car, hoping the kayak was still there!

This being Shetland it was!

It was low water and the wind blowing straight down the Voe, a very shallow Voe at this point, so we were poling with the paddles for the first couple of hundered metres before padling properly.

We stayed to the northern side of the voe heading for Sandwick Beach, just round this headland.

As we rounded it we could see the beach. Time for a cuppa!

A lovely spot with plenty of mussels to collect and a back beach that would be ideal for camping with fresh water too.

Just as we were relaxing the forecast rain and build up in wind started to arrive so it was time to get a move on with the voe to cross. Beren normally sits in front of me on his little seat but this time he was squeezed in the bow in front of Clare so that I could paddle unhindered.

It was a bit grim by the middle of the voe, so no time for photos. Beren pulled his cap down over his face and Clare got a nice refreshing facial as the bow spray hit her time and time again, leaving her glasses covered in salt water. Possibly a good thing as she couldn't see! I might not have got the spray, but I got a good work out, head down and padling to get across in to the lee on the other side of the voe as fast as possible.

Eventually the Hunters Monument was welcomed into view as we carried on down the voe and started to head back into the wind towards West Lunna Voe. Choppy and hard work but nothing compared to crossing Swining Voe.

By that time, with the rain and hard paddling, the fuzzy image of Lunna House and our take out was more than welcome.

Back in the car, wet, but happy we set off back to get Clare's car, unload and have some welcome bacon butties back at home.

All in all a good morning out and one that Beren enjoyed, even helping Clare to paddle on the last leg. Let's hope for some drop in the wind though,there's so many other places to explore when the conditons are fair.

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