Sunday, 27 March 2011

A Hazy Ramsey Island 27-03-2011

I left Porthsele on a hazy Sunday morning but with light winds and the tides perfect for a trip around Ramsey.

Reaching St John's Point Ramsey was just visible through the haze though the sun was doing it's best to force it's way through.

Reaching Pen Dal-aderyn and looking across at the Bitches the flood tide was running but the sea was calm, just right for the ferry glide across to the island.

It was an uneventful crossing and the sea remained calm as I paddled Southward towards Ynys Cantwr.
I keep my distance from the pebbled beach at Foel Fawr where there are a large group of seals hauled out on the beach.
The motif on the cliffs on Ynys Cantwr is clearly visible as I paddle past (Aliens or a freak or nature?)
I get up a nice turn of speed aided by the tide as I paddle through Twll y Dillyn and into Bay Dillyn.
Paddling around the headland of Trwynmynachdy I was going to have a look in the numerous caves but as soon as I paddled toward them I was acosted by two very large, stroppy Bull seals.  Passing the steep pebbled beach of Porth Lleuog I could see why I was being mobbed, they were on guard duty over the many sleeping seals on the beach.

The two not so friendly Bulls left me as soon as I paddled out of the bay.  Like Skomer yesterday, the cliffs on the West of Ramsey were deserted of nesting birds.

I paddled into the large beach of Abermawr expecting to see more seals but it was deathly quiet, no seals, no birds and no RIBs.

Paddling into the cave at the NW corner of Ramsey the highest point on Ramsey, Carnllundain was nicely framed although still a bit hazy.

Reaching Trwyn Ogof Hen at the NE of Ramsey I decided to paddle Southward down to the Bitches.

The flood tide was starting to ease off but there was still enough flow to cause a bit of turbulence.

I worked my way across the bitches out to the outermost rock just as the sun won it's battle with the haze.

I paddle out from the last Bitch and into the main tide race and enjoy an easy paddle back Northward through Ramsey Sound.

Arriving back at Porthsele there were 3 people on the beach, Summer is definately on it's way!!

Saturday, 26 March 2011

What No Puffins? 26-03-2011

I arrived at Martin's Haven just too late to paddle out with Chris and Amanda from Pencarnan and a group of local paddlers who I often bump into on my travels. They were all heading out along the North coast of Skomer.

I paddled Southward through Jack Sound against the North flowing flood tide to get the most  benefit from the tide around the rest of the island.

Paddling along the South of Skomer I make a slight detour to look at the cave that pierces the Neck but it looked a bit rough to venture in.

I paddled into South Haven in search of Puffins but there were only a few small rafts all of which were very nervous and dived underwater when I got too close so no decent close up photos.

After stalking the Puffins for a while I gave up and carried on toward the Mew Stone, where I could paddle through the small gap between the large pillar of rock and the island.

I thought I might see more birds at The Wick but it was very quiet looks like I am a little early for the nesting birds.
Rounding Skomer Head and along the West cliffs of Skomer I encountered a little adverse tide but at least the sea was calm.

At the Bull Hole the cliffs are again deserted, this is another popular nesting site, knowing my luck the birds will all arrive next week!

Approaching the Garland Stone the tide was slack allowing me time to photo 3 male Shags posing in their pulling attire.

I paddle along the North coast and into North Haven but again it was all quiet with not a Puffin to be seen.

Paddling out of North Haven and along the Neck there are small rafts of Puffins but again they are very nervous. It is calmer this side of the cave in the Neck but now there are rocks blocking the way through.

As I cross Little Sound to Midland Isle I do spot some migratory birds, a couple of Canada Geese.
I cross Jack Sound and paddle Southward paddling into a large cave which could be classed as an arch.
Paddling through the West facing smaller entrance I turn right and paddle out of a much larger South facing opening out into Renny Slip.

Whilst I was in this neck of the woods I paddled on a bit further to Rainy Rock to check on the lone boulder perched on top of the cliff. I wonder if in any time in the near future the rock will lose it's battle against the elements and slide into the sea below.

Paddling back Northward the ebbing tide is starting to flow but staying close to the cliffs it's not too much of an effort as I enter Jack Sound.

I paddle into 1 of the numerous caves along the Jack Sound mainland which opens into a large chamber with 2 other holes at the back but no way through as the tide is too low.

It is only a short paddle back to Martin's Haven but it is a bit of a slog as the wind has picked up again.

A paddle of just under 10 nautical miles but alas only a few Puffins, I guess I will have to come back soon (it's a hard life!) Sorry to Chris and Amanda that I didn't catch up with you, will see you at Easter.