A week in the South West^

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Mr Hoppy
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A week in the South West^

Post by Mr Hoppy » Mon Sep 13, 2010 6:34 pm

After a great weekend at Mark's SW event paddling around Prawle (covered elsewhere) Me & Mrs Hoppy headed off with friends to explore Cornwall a bit. None of us had paddled down there before and most of us hadn't really been down that way much at all.

As predicted Monday was a complete wash out, the wind wasn't too bad but it's no fun paddling in that much rain so we walked over to the Eden Project (because we're cheap and wanted a discount). We spent the whole day wandering and photographing around the biomes although I was hugely dissapointed that you weren't allowed to have a go on the canopy monitoring baloon, apparently only staff are allowed to use that.

The following day dawned bright and sunny with light S. Westerlies, so we decided to paddle round St Austell bay from Mevagissey to Fowey. For some reason the boys decided to let the girls run the shuttle, 2 hours later we finally got on the water (lesson learnt there).

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The paddling was calm and pleasant in the sun with just a hint of a breeze to take the edge off overheating. I did start to feel a little swamped by Romany's though.

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We were able to pick up some swell to make easy but enjoyable rockhopping as we went with plenty of gaps to paddle through, caves and arches.

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Crossing across the North End of the bay we caught the wind a bit stronger across the boats just as the scenery took a turn for the boring which made it a bit of a soggy drag but the skies were giving us a treat even if the shore was a bit developed.

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The final stretch up and around the headland into Fowey Harbour returned to the pretty scenery with wooded cliffs dropping to the sea.

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As we rounded the headland into Fowey what swell there was, was breaking across occasional reefs leading to s lightly iffy moment when the water sucked clear off the rock a couple of feet away from me and I ended up sat on the crest of the wave looking at a long night with the resin but a hefty draw stroke saw me narrowly avoid the rock. Suitably chastised I steered a wider course around until we entered Fowey harbour at highwater.

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The paddling was pleasant with plenty of interest both in on the west and east sides of the bay. I didn't get photos of them but in the middle of the bay were a number of large black bouys, anyone got any ideas on what they are?

Claire and Mark only had one more paddling day so with another good forecast we set off up to the North coast to paddle round Tintagel and Boscastle, we camped overnight in a valley near the coast and woke to find a quiet day with little wind. As we neared the coast and left the shelter of the valleys we picked up the wind which accompanied us for the day blowing onshore at a F3-4 all day. Arriving at Trebarwick sands a decent swell was rolling in and we were faced with a surf launch but Crackington Haven was looking much more manageable as we dropped the van off. We launched from Trebarwick with no issues and headed off round Gull Rock, as we rounded gull rock it became apparent that todays paddle was going to be a bit more 'lumpy' than the previous days. We set off to Tintagel and were faced with clapotis even paddling a way off shore the cliffs and the wind against the end of the tide producing a bit of a lumpy swell. The beach on the North of the headland provided enough shelter to stop for lunch although the tourists everywhere and the air abulance helo lifting off the top spoilt the peace.

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The following stretch to Boscastle provided constant stunning scenery and a constant large swell, regularly leaving us unable to see each other either side of the waves.

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There was always plenty to see with stacks off every little headland and zawns providing occasional relief from the swell.

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There are 3 paddlers in this picture.

We finally paddled into Boscastle although nearly missed the entrance into the harbour (it's not the most obvious of places).

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The remaining section from Boscastle through to Crackington Haven saw the swell pick up which led to an interesting landing, I was seriously considering either continuing on to Bude or sitting on the sheltered beach just inside the headland for a few hours but managed to get a break to get myself in.

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And then was able to call in the rest of the group as it made it easier to spot the less extreme sets.

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php ... 199&ref=mf

Chris

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TechnoEngineer
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Re: A week in the South West

Post by TechnoEngineer » Mon Sep 13, 2010 10:11 pm

Great pictures and great story - thanks for sharing!

How many paddlers were in the group overall?
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Mr Hoppy
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Re: A week in the South West

Post by Mr Hoppy » Tue Sep 14, 2010 8:47 am

There were 4 of us out, me & mrs hoppy and Claire & Mark in the other red T4 at the SW weekend. I was feeling a bit odd one out as the other 3 were in Romanys.

I wasn't sure about the pictures and have had to fairly carefully select as on Wednesday I was right at the limit of where I could comfortably take photos at times, the clapotis was noticeable a long way out. There are somemore on the albums which have open access if you want to see some of the more iffy shots.

It was nice paddling but what surprised me was the amount of litter in the water. Most of my paddling is in N Wales or Pembrokeshire and I'm not saying they're immaculate but it felt like every other paddlestroke was going in near a crisp packet or shopping bag. Detracted a little from the stunning scenery.

Unfortunately a stinking cold put paid to any further paddling that week so I ended up doing the tourist, sightseeing thing back along the N coast.

chykensa
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Re: A week in the South West

Post by chykensa » Tue Sep 14, 2010 6:30 pm

Thanks for a good tale and some cracking photos; glad you enjoyed your time on Cornwall. In fact we caught you up on the way through Cornwall on our way back from Mark's Meet - we stopped to re-tie the boats on the Liskeard by-pass, and caught you just as you turned off towards St. Austell. We noticed coz we were in my mates yellow T4 with the Lamborghini alloys!

I must admit to not paddling too much on the North Coast, but am sorry to hear about the amount of litter you noticed. My mates and I paddle around the Falmouth area predominantly, and I can honestly say that litter is not a problem there. Needless to say we are meticulous ourselves, even taking our cigarette butts home with us.

Hope this has whetted your appetite for Cornish paddling and would live to see you down here again before too long!

Andy
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Mark R
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Re: A week in the South West

Post by Mark R » Tue Sep 14, 2010 6:36 pm

The litter issue rings no bells with me. I wonder what that was all about?

Very much enjoyed your pics and report...
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Mr Hoppy
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Re: A week in the South West

Post by Mr Hoppy » Tue Sep 14, 2010 7:27 pm

Andy, we did see you, were having issues with my radio charger at the time, it nearly caught fire, I think we went past you with it hanging out of the window. I'm coveting your wheels, it's a gorgeous looking van alround but the wheels make me feel funny inside.

The litter was odd, it wasn't what we were expecting, but particularly in st Austell bay it was very prevalent. Both days the wind was onshore and it was gathering in the foam behind the clapotis. It's also a rising tides after the end of the school hols? Most surprising was the fact it wasn't commercial litter like you see elsewhere. Equally I'm a bit more sensitive to it than most as it's what I do for work.

Thanks for the comments on pics, was surprised when they came out to be honest, nearly fell in trying to do compose shots close to the cliffs round boscastle.

Chris

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Re: A week in the South West

Post by nickcrowhurst » Tue Sep 14, 2010 7:39 pm

chykensa wrote: My mates and I paddle around the Falmouth area predominantly, and I can honestly say that litter is not a problem there.
Last September the beaches and shallows just outside the entrance to Falmouth to the west were disgusting. We quickly filled all three storage compartments in our double kayak with small trash from just one small rocky beach in Bream Cove between Maenporth and Rosemullion Head. The large items we had to leave behind. Perhaps there had been an easterly blow recently.
This is, of course, a world-wide issue, and it's been so for many decades. In 1969 I landed our young family from our day-sailer onto a tiny island, Silver Holme, on lake Windermere. It was heavily littered with bottles and cans. In 2008 we landed on the Money Keys in the Florida Keys. They were so heavily trashed as to spoil the trip to what should have been a beautiful pristine destination. In 1994 we spent six weeks with the kayaks on the southern Portuguese coast at Cacela Velha. Every morning and afternoon I went out into the distant sand dunes to play my flute for an hour. On each trip I filled a complete dustbin liner or old sack with trash from the quarter mile section of beach in front of the village. That works out at 84 dustbin liners emptied into the village communal skip. The beach was clean at the end of our visit.
We'll continue to do our trivial little efforts.
Nick.

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Re: A week in the South West

Post by Richard W » Tue Sep 14, 2010 9:51 pm

Nice to see your pictures from Cornwall Chris, enjoyed meeting the four of you from Shrewsbury and the Kayak Kernow boys at Mark's SWSKM.

I haven't posted any pic's before so here goes the first attempt. If this works, they're some photo's taken when a group from Haverfordwest Kayak Club cleaned up a couple of small beaches on Skomer in early August, just before the seal pupping season got going.... should have seen us towing bags of assorted junk to the more accessable beach where the wardens rib could then come and remove it from the island!

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Rgds

Richie

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Re: A week in the South West

Post by chykensa » Fri Sep 17, 2010 8:24 am

BTW, you mentioned the black buoys outside Fowey - there is a fairly large amount of commercial ships into Fowey to load china clay from the pits around St. Austell - these buoys could be moorings out in the bay while they wait for a favourable tide. My mate Tim has spent a lot of time around the coast in a previous job, I'll ask him (or he might reply himself - he's recently joined this forum!).
I have an idea that I have yet to float (no pun intended) to my buddies, that we spend a morning in the winter doing a litter pick up the river Fal. In kayaks, we can reach litter that even a small motor launch couldn't, and with hatches we could carry quite a lot between 3 of us. It would be satisfying if nothing else to be doing something positive for our local environment, and thinking about it the litter problem seems worse the further up the river you go. Perhaps there is less movement of water up there to scour the rubbish out to see, and it sits in the little creeks and inlets for longer.

Not surprisingly, this litter problem gets worse in the summer, with lots of yachts and general pleasure craft using the upper reaches. What a shame that river users are not more considerate :(

Richie - it was good to meet you in Devon too - didn't get your email address, so it is good to hear from you on these pages! Hope all's well, and hope to meet up with you at some point!

Andy
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Re: A week in the South West

Post by Richard W » Fri Sep 17, 2010 10:05 am

Hi again Andy

I've PM'd you with my e'mail address, or you can always PM me from the forum.

Richie

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Re: A week in the South West

Post by chykensa » Fri Sep 17, 2010 5:30 pm

Thanks Richie, will stay in touch!
Andy
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Mark R
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Re: A week in the South West^

Post by Mark R » Tue Oct 19, 2010 6:57 pm

Mr Hoppy wrote:Image
Any chance you could send me a full res version of this interesting pic?

Cheers,
Mark Rainsley
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Mr Hoppy
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Re: A week in the South West^

Post by Mr Hoppy » Sat Oct 30, 2010 6:40 pm

Mark,

Photo e-mailed through. Credit to Doug Rae who took the photo whilst walking the coast and very kindly sent them through to me.

Chris

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Re: A week in the South West^

Post by nikhoward » Sat Oct 05, 2013 6:16 am

The buoys could be the sewage outlet (overflow from storm water, apparently rarely has to be used) pipe that is south of Par beach? I live not far from Meva so am lucky enough to paddle round here most weeks (I even have the choice of half a dozen beaches 15 min or less away to launch from)

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Re: A week in the South West^

Post by nickcrowhurst » Sat Oct 05, 2013 7:32 pm

[quote="nikhoward"]The buoys could be the sewage outlet (overflow from storm water, apparently rarely has to be used) pipe that is south of Par beach? quote]

Combined Sewer Outfalls (CSOs) permit raw sewage to be dumped all too frequently into our rivers and near-shore waters. Some recently installed CSOs are obliged to have logging apparatus so we, the public, could establish how often they are opened. The idea is that whenever the local sewage works gets to capacity, the surplus is dumped via the CSO into the local river or sea. The name derives from the combining of raw sewage with groundwater run-off (rain) in the area.
Locations of permitted sewage discharges into water courses can be searched via the Environment Agency (EA) website. Searching for discharges within 10km of Fowey lists 352 (Yes, three hundred and fifty two.)
There is a CSO listed (Page 5) at Readymoney Cove, just west of Fowey, which might take the shine off your romantic pursuit of Rebecca up Frenchman's Creek.

The "Visit Cornwall" website states that there is a bathing platform in the middle of the cove: http://www.visitcornwall.com/things-to- ... cove-beach

The EA search page is here: http://epr.environment-agency.gov.uk/eP ... sters.aspx
Select the category: "Environmental Permits (Water discharge)"
It is a useful and interesting exercise to put in the search box the post code or town where you live and/or paddle.

Nick.

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