Friday, September 15, 2017

Tors Cove Solo

Around lunch time I got the itch to go for a good paddle.  It's been a while since I've paddled in some decent conditions and I'd had enough waiting.  I left work at 2:30 and headed home to collect my boat and gear.  I was having a hard time deciding where to go.  The toss up was between MIddle Cove-Flat Rock, or Tors Cove around the Islands.  Every time Ive been to Tors Cove there have been decent conditions out around the Islands so thats where I headed.

Fox Island.  Right now the Island is occupied by a flock of Sheep.  My pictures didn't turn out well.

Passing between the mainland and Fox Island is a shallow shelf where the swell rolls in and breaks.  Not much action today but if you come here with a bigger easterly swell it can be massive.

 Rounding Fox Island things got a bit more exciting.  Nothing extreme, but enough to keep me interested...just what I was looking for.

I took my time rounding Fox Island and headed over to Ship Island.  I took an instructor course with NKC this year and since then haven't touched a greenland paddle.  I really wanted to try and get a decent forward stroke with a euro paddle if I was going to be teaching, so I took the summer to work on it.  This was the first time I used my greenland all summer and I decided to use it today because it gives me a bit of extra confidence.  I find that with a Greenland paddle I have 100% faith in my roll.  Don't get me wrong I can roll with a euro paddle very well, but with a greenland I just feel that extra boost of confidence.

 At the tip of Great Island.

 Two large caves that are always fun to explore.

 It's a whole new feeling heading into one of these, wide open to the Atlantic, alone.

Inside looking out.  
Not gonna lie, I felt a little uneasy being in this cave out here by myself.  I didn't stay long lol.

The channel!  Most of my paddling buddies have gone through here at one point or another, but every time I've been out here it was not passable.  As much as I wanted to go through here today I decided being alone is not the time to try something like this.  Even tho today was calm for Tors Cove, this passage still was fairly tangly when the bigger swells would come through.

Rounding the Southern tip of Great Island.
This is where the fun really began.  I didn't take too many pictures along here because I needed both hands on my paddle.  The clapotis made this a really fun stretch and gave me that I came looking for.

It's a damn good adrenaline rush on this side of the island, and being alone only intensified things.

Looking back at the channel I was too nervous to go through.....Next time!

Once I got around the South end things calmed back down and it was a relaxed paddle for most of the way back.

I made a loop in around this little cove and wasn't really paying attention to the water.  There was a sinker just at the surface I didn't see.  As I was paddling by I was looking at the shoreline and I felt my boat drop a little.  When I looked to my left there was a small breaking wave looking me right in the face!  I quickly threw out a low brace as the wave slapped me in the face, and as luck would have it I stayed up and quickly moved along.  Good thing I did, because the next two waves would have no doubt side surfed me into the cliff.

 That's it for Great Island!

 Back over to Ship Island I go.

 Not too much to see here.  I thought about stopping for a little break on a beach on the West side of the Island but decided to hold off until I hit Robin's on the way home.

Bit of a long calm crossing back to Fox Island.

Thought this made for a good shot.  I need a new camera...

Back safe! 

I had a great afternoon paddling around the islands.  The East and South side of the Islands was a lot of fun and satisfied my craving for acton.  Although I'v been in much larger conditions around Tors Cove this was just the right amount of fun for a solo trip.
Looking forward to getting out into some bigger stuff with my buddies!