Ynysoedd y Moelrhoniaid, The Skerries – 5 Feb, 2018

Ynysoedd y Moelrhoniaid (Island of the Bald headed grey seal) or the Skerries.
Richard J, Paul and Steve.

What a great way to spend a cold Monday in February! HW (Liv) was 1438 (9.1m) and the flood runs until 1353. We put on at the beautiful bay of Porth Swtan (Swtan is a Whiting in Welsh) at 1225 and ferried to the Island. It’s an interesting ferry. Using transits, we could feel areas of faster/ slower water. The crossing took just under an hour. It’s always magical to arrive at the Skerries. Inquisitive seals are everywhere and the island certainly lives up to its Welsh name!
All day, the quality of light was amazing. Refractions causing distant objects to appear as if floating. However, the real ‘jewel’ of the day was an amazing view of Isle of Man. It would have been an excellent day for this crossing! But there again, all three of us were recovering from the lurgy, so maybe not.
We lingered for lunch and simply gazing at the view until cold prompted movement. Or maybe it was seeing the ebb tide increasing around Gull Rock? We paddled around the island, now feeling some considerable foce in the ebb. Another ferry took us across to Ynys y Fydlyn and one of our favourite areas of sea cliff and Coast. And so back to the vehicles.

North Coast on the flood, 27 Jan 2018

When a wet, windy foul weather day, turns out to be a great day!
Forecast for Coastal Waters around Anglesey on Saturday suggested rain, winds (WSW/W, F6). They weren’t wrong. The drive onto Anglesey was miserable…. And Paul’s wipers had a temporary ‘moment’, deciding to stop working! Holyhead Truckstop was the usual oasis and we bumped into Jim Krawiecki and his group who were heading off to Trearddur Bay to do some rescue practice. We felt wet enough already.
The coffee and humour had worked it’s wonderful ways as we headed to Porth Llechog ( Bull Bay). And enthusiasm was back to normal as we got on the water, hiding (too hot) in dry suits and working our way under the rocks and cliffs of the most Northerly mainland of Wales. Great paddling and with low tide, stunning environment and Geology.
Lunch was at Porth Wen, commonly known as ‘The Brickworks’. In Victorian times they made bricks here. Rather special bricks using local quartzite. These bricks were not only hard but able to withstand very high temperatures, essential to line the industrial furnaces of the time for the manufacture of steel. All interesting stuff but lost to the humour of friends Barry Shaw and James Stevenson who were with a group!
Launching was delayed as Geth rooted out a ‘Sea Squirt’, so named because they squirt out water when disturbed and more closely related to vertebrates like us than invertebrates. We were now chilly so headed West. Once out of the Bay we were paddling into the full strength of the wind. We paddled West of Middle Mouse before starting a ‘ferry’ out to the island. As we entered the eddy line, a call from Paul as a Common Dolphin (http://www.seawatchfoundation.org.uk/common-dolphin/) was racing and turning just behind my kayak. Wonderful!

The ‘ferry’ became somewhat technical as we neared the island. Strong wind, clapotis and tide race joined forces to make quite tough paddling. The North side of the island was a blast. Fast surf waves and wind behind! The GPS track would be spaghetti as we repeated ‘runs’. All with the fabulous backdrop views of the North Coast.

Return to Bull Bay with wind behind and the flood tide was very quick. Even the rain had stopped. Yet again, a foul day turned out to be a great day!

Written by Rich.  Photos by Geth.

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South Stack on the ebb, 20 Jan 2018

A fantastic wintry trip out from Porth Dafarch to South Stack on a 9m (Liverpool) ebb tidal stream.

The swell provided interesting rockhopping.

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The big chanels between Penrhyn Mawr and Abraham’s Bosom.

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Entering Abraham’s Bosom

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Lunch at Abraham’s Bosom

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Richard

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More rockhopping

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South Stack

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North Stack

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Approaching South Stack Tide Race

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Paul, Richard and Gary surfing

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Returning to Porthdafarch

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Snow covered mountains

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The end of another great paddle

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Paddling today were: Paul, Richard, Ed, Rachel, Lynn, Steve, Gary, Jan and Geth.

Bull Bay trip via Cemaes Bay and Middle Mouse, 13 Jan 2018

Paddling today were: Paul, Rich, Rachel, Steve, Peter, Jan and Gary.

Good surfing at Middle Mouse Island and Llanlleiana Headland.

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Middle Mouse Island

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Middle Mouse to Cemaes Bay

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A hungry dogwhelk feasting on barnacles…

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Middle Mouse again…

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Great surf at Llanlleiana Headland

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Then end of the day photo.  Thanks to all for a great day!

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Cemlyn to The Skerries and back on a spring ebb tide, 5 Jan 2018

A great day out with Ed for our first trip of 2018 to The Skerries.

9.68m Tide Liverpool.  SW Swell 0.8m, 10sec.  Negligible wind.

We arrived at Harry Furlough’s at 12:00 for the start of the ebbing tiderace and surfed there for one hour.

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We arrived at The Skerries at 13:50, following a surf at Victoria Bank.

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We departed The Skerries at 14:20, to attempt the crossing of Carmel Sound.  The ebb current was now at its strongest rate.

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The Platters on lively form.

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Arriving at Carmel Head’s ebb eddy, adjacent to Ynys Fydlyn, at 15:00.

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Ynys Fydlyn

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Rounding Carmel Head on our way back to Cemlyn at 15:20.

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The view back to The Skerries.  We arrived back at Cemlyn soon after 16:00.

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Church Bay – Harry Furlough’s Rocks via Carmel Head, 21 Dec 2017

A wonderful shortest day of the year paddle around Carmel Head with JF Marleau and Justine Curgenven.  Photos by Geth.

Rockhopping out of Church Bay.

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Tiderace #1 – Surfing at Ynys Fydlyn

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Ynys Fydlyn Arch

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Approaching Ynys Fydlyn’s Caves – a bit too much swell to get through the tunnels.

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The Carmel Head Rocky Channel System.

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JF couldn’t wait for his lunch!

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Lunch stop before Harry Furlough’s Rocks.

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Tiderace #2 – Surfing at Harry Furlough’s Rocks.

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Tiderace #3 – Carmel Head was so big and fun to surf!

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Force 6(ish) NW Windy Day On The South West Coast of Holy Island, Anglesey

 

A great day of hiding from the wind and rough water fun on the Porthdafarch-Penrhyn Mawr coastline.  Paddling today were Paul, Richard, Rachel, Pete, Jan, Gary and Geth.

The local flood tide flowed until 13:30.  We played in this tidal stream at Mini Mawr and after lunch, once the flood current had finished, the swell at Penrhyn Mawr.  During the flood Penrhyn Mawr appeared to be in a confused state of huge breaking waves.  We finished the day with a superb downwind run home to Porthdafarch.

 

25 Nov 2017

 

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The New Streamlined Journey to Becoming a British Canoeing Sea Kayak Coach

A new development in British Canoeing sea kayak (and other disciplines) coaching is arriving in January 2018.  It promises to personalise, simplify and reduce the cost of gaining UKCC Level 2 endorsed sea kayak coaching qualifications.

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The pre-2018 system of UKCC Level 1 –> UKCC Level 2 –> Moderate Water Endorsement Sea –> Advanced Water Endorsement was often seen as a poorly personalised system for training and endorsing the coaching skills of discipline specific paddlers.  There are anecdotal stories of kayak/canoe clubs in recent years seeing only a few (or even none) of their members attain sea kayak coach status.  This is despite the significant enthusiasm many of their members have for introducing other participants to sea kayaking and developing their skills.

What’s new for aspirant sea kayak coaches in 2018?

Kayak Coach (sheltered water)

Sea Kayak Coach (moderate water)

Advanced Sea Kayak Coach (advanced water)

Performance Sea Kayak Coach (just a rebranding of the current UKCC Level 3 Sea Kayak Coach)

Advanced Performance Sea Kayak Coach (Performance Coach with Advanced Sea Kayak Coach)

What does this mean for me?  (The direct entry options to coach in the environment you paddle)

For sea kayakers without any personal performance, leadership or safety awards

You can attain Kayak Coach (shelterd water) by:

  • Attending the 2 day Core Training course on coaching theory
  • Followed by a 2 day Kayak Coach Training (sheltered water) course (both training courses are supported by e-learning modules and do not require workbooks).
  • Finally, when you are ready to attend a 1 day assessment you can (there are no set post-training consolidation requirements other than your own action plan).

For Sea Kayak Leaders (formerly BCU 4*)

You can attain Sea Kayak Coach (moderate water) by:

  • Attending the 2 day Core Training course on coaching theory (the same one as above)
  • Followed by a 2 day Sea Kayak Coach Training course (both training courses are supported by e-learning modules and do not require workbooks).
  • Finally, when you are ready to attend a 1 day assessment you can (there are no set post-training consolidation requirements other than your own action plan).

For Advanced Sea Sea Kayak Leaders (formerly BCU 5*)

You can attain Sea Kayak Coach, as above.

Or you can go straight to Advanced Sea Kayak Coach by:

  • Attending the 2 day Core Training course on coaching theory (the same one as above)
  • Followed by a 2 day Advanced Sea Kayak Coach Training course (both training courses are supported by e-learning modules and do not require workbooks).
  • Finally, when you are ready to attend a 1 day assessment you can (there are no set post-training consolidation requirements other than your own action plan).

Coach Award Pathway Final

For current BCU coaches

There are various routes into the new scheme, see below:

Who is providing these qualifications?

The full range of coaches and centres will be published on January 1st 2018.  Sea Kayaking Wales will be among them!

What about the other paddlesport disciplines?

Coach Award Choices

See https://www.britishcanoeing.org.uk/courses/new-for-2018/ for more information.

 

 

Porthdafarch – South Stack, 11 Nov 2017

Great conditions for a South Stack trip – 1m 7 seconds SW swell with light F2/3 N wind.  Penrhyn Mawr was superb.

Lots of great company including Ed, Paul, Rich and countless other passing paddler friends.  Photos taken by Geth.

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