Sunday, March 30, 2008

Killyleagh to Castleward 25th March 08 " Click here for Video of the trip - courtesy of Desi B.K.C "

Ernie in his pride and joy - a new Valley Aquanaut
With the wind on our tails it was a quick trip down to Castleward , south of Killyleagh.
The large and impressive grounds around Castleward stately home looking a little gloomy at this time of year but in a few weeks spring will change that ! The house can be seen on the hill looking out towards Strangford lough , I was inside the house years ago and it was like a time warp to Queen Victoria's time !
Some of the group .
Peter enjoying the new found freedom of sea kayaking .
Desi and Ernie with Portaferry in the distance , with the ever present common Seal not far away.
Our put in spot at Killyleagh.
Calm waters
The fleet - my red Valley Avocet , A lovely old Valley nordkapp belonging to Desi , Deirdre's P&H Capella , Kevin's home built sea kayak , and two Valley Aquanaut's glass and rm owned by Ernie. The tide came in at a ferocious rate , minutes later our boats were almost afloat! The walled back garden owned by the National Trust (Castleward)
Desi using the original paddle for sea kayaking , it's a hand made wooden Greenland paddle lovingly crafted by him ! and they are a dream to use as I have borrowed it for rolling practise in the pool on a few occasions

Sunday, March 9, 2008

You learn something new every day !

The Strangford ferry - gliding over to Portaferry, the speed of the tide here is amazingly very fast , a narrow opening to a vast body of water running in and out of the lough which is many miles in length has claimed many victims over years and is littered with shipwrecks spanning 100's of year's , at low tide you can see some of them even today!
But to the hardy kayaker this is heaven , not me - but I do know those who dance it's whirlpools and eddys no names .
This is Alabama an 8 month old grey seal who was rescued and brought to the aquarium/sanctuary here in Portaferry Northern Ireland after being caught up in a fishing net, which left a wound on the seal's neck , but its well on the way to recovery and will be released back to the wild at the start of April, a happy ending this time !

This is a replica of the Megladon's kisser and trust me if he was still about today, I think kayaking would not ! be on my list of hobbies!

Lauren pointing out her greatest love Sharks ! A Great White's nashers which I hope never to get to close to.

This set was from South Africa and was caught in the nets protecting a beach ! Remove the nets and take your chances I say ! Swim here if your mad would be the signs I would put up .

Lee taking it all in . This Thorn-back ray is smiling for the camera !

Michelle and the kids and I at Portaferry aquarium Co.Down ,
If your ever here check it out !

The weather was poor for paddling today, and was a good excuse to go to one of our favorite places instead!