Monday, 20 February 2012

Island Hopping

Sunday 19th - weather good and winds forecast for around a F3 - a trip out to Steepholm island in the Bristol Channel with Taran was on.......

Leaving Sully we paddled out across the channel, estimating our aim points to counter the flood tide. It was strange to be paddling straight past Flatholm for a change!

Steepholm approaching in the distance. As we approached mid-channel the sea-state started to pick up. Closer to the island things became distinctly more entertaining!

Around the south side of the Island and Taran was enjoying some rock hopping fun. I have to admit I was a little happier a little further out....
On landing and with no-one at home we took some time out to explore this fascinating place....
WWII Anti-aircraft gun still in position, with older pre 1900s gun positions either side.
 Admiring the view from one of the old bunkers.
Exploring some of the old observation bunkers / gun positions involved some airy steps!
England tantalizingly close! Not far to Brean Down but getting back would have been fun.
Time to paddle on... next destination Flatholm. Taran seal launching down the beach.
 All good fun!
The tide was still quite tasty for the crossing but Taran put his experience in these waters to good use and we made a pretty good ferry glide across. A bit of scoff and some coffee on the beach at Flatholm before......

 ...another beach launch into the sea!
 Stylish finish by Taran!
And onward to our final destination - the Monkstone - with a lowering sun reminding us that only an hour or so of daylight remains.

Tide is still on the flood and we make quick progress to the Monkstone. Taran stops to have a quick explore, before we turn for the paddle home...

 ..into the setting sun. The paddle back to Sully was just superb.

 The setting sun moving between the clouds giving surreal paddling conditions.... the sun gradually set...... leave us paddling the last few km in the twilight. What an excellent paddle. Cheers Taran.

Stats: 28km in about 4 hours of moving time.


  1. Great photos Jules. Well done on getting to Steepholm looked like a good day for it. Looks like the gulls are back!

  2. Hey Jules, you beat me to it (Steepholm). Looks like you had an amazing trip, the return journey looked sublime.