Nearing Flat Holm I was passed by the MSC Lea, a 217 metre container ship on its way to Antwerp after leaving Avonmouth just up the Bristol Channel.
After ferry gliding across the last few hundred yards to the island, I could now have a breather in the calm water below the Farmhouse and Well Batteries 2 of the 4 disused gun emplacements built in the 1860s as part of the Palmerston Forts (Follies) to guard against the threat of invasion from the French.
They were known as Follies as they were never used in anger, well not against the French. The island was re-armed during World War 2.Paddling under the lighthouse I catch a glimpse of some of the island's wildlife, as well as the countless Gulls constantly squawking and hovering overhead, I spot the island's goat which didn't look in the best condition. By the lighthouse there is another of Flat Holm's emplacements.
Due to numerous shipwrecks and after 60 soldiers drowned when their vessel sank in 1736 the first lighthouse was built and so there has been a light on Flat Holm since 1737.
Paddling up the east side of the island I encounter a bit of adverse tide, but passing the jetties the tide starts to run in my favour and is starting to flow at quite a rate through the small gap between Castle Rock and the island.
After a bit of a play in the fast flowing water I have a short break by the arch on the island next to Castle Rock before setting on my way back to the mainland. I set a course quite a way ahead of the Wolves North Cardinal Buoy and let the ever increasing tide flow do most of the work for me.
I am swept past the Wolves Buoy named after the Wolves rock and not the football team, even though the colours are the same. The rock which becomes exposed on low spring tides and has claimed quite a few ships over the years.
I take one last look at Flat Holm and the Wolves Buoy before starting on my easy paddle back to Sully Island.
I decided to paddle back through Sully Sound and the tide was just right to take some photos of the remains of the shipwreck on Sully Island.
It is only a short paddle back to the slipway where on landing I look back at Sully Island in the foreground with Flat Holm on the left and Steep Holm on the right.
A paddle of 9 nautical miles in yet again almost perfect conditions. A great way to start the day. Lets hope the rest of the day goes as well as I sample the delights of Cardiff City Centre after dark!