Saturday 17 February was a sunny day with a playful swell hitting the westerly shore. The tidal range was in the spring end of the spectrum and the wind was around force 4 from the South, backing West later in the day. The Ynys Gybi (Holy Island) circumnavigation seemed like a good plan.
Roger Chandler’s group on their way out to Rhoscolyn Beacon
Approaching Four Mile Bridge
Entering the Inland Sea
The 2 PM Ferry
Crossing to the break water
South Stack tiderace
A bit of a surf session with tired arms…
Approaching Penrhyn Mawr
Back at Porthdafarch
A lovely journey from Menai Bridge to Plas Newydd. We had lots of fun playing with the current at the Menai Suspension Bridge, Swellies Pole and Ynys Gorad Goch before cruising to Plas Newydd and back to Menai Bridge. There was only an 8.6m tidal height at Liverpool. Nevertheless, plenty of intertidal life was exposed in this interestingly biodiverse coastline.
Paddling today were Dave and Geth.
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.
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.
A fantastic wintry trip out from Porth Dafarch to South Stack on a 9m (Liverpool) ebb tidal stream.
The swell provided interesting rockhopping.
The big chanels between Penrhyn Mawr and Abraham’s Bosom.
Entering Abraham’s Bosom
Lunch at Abraham’s Bosom
Approaching South Stack Tide Race
Paul, Richard and Gary surfing
Returning to Porthdafarch
Snow covered mountains
The end of another great paddle
Paddling today were: Paul, Richard, Ed, Rachel, Lynn, Steve, Gary, Jan and Geth.
Paddling today were: Paul, Rich, Rachel, Steve, Peter, Jan and Gary.
Good surfing at Middle Mouse Island and Llanlleiana Headland.
Middle Mouse Island
Middle Mouse to Cemaes Bay
A hungry dogwhelk feasting on barnacles…
Middle Mouse again…
Great surf at Llanlleiana Headland
Then end of the day photo. Thanks to all for a great day!
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.
We arrived at The Skerries at 13:50, following a surf at Victoria Bank.
We departed The Skerries at 14:20, to attempt the crossing of Carmel Sound. The ebb current was now at its strongest rate.
The Platters on lively form.
Arriving at Carmel Head’s ebb eddy, adjacent to Ynys Fydlyn, at 15:00.
Rounding Carmel Head on our way back to Cemlyn at 15:20.
The view back to The Skerries. We arrived back at Cemlyn soon after 16:00.
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.
Tiderace #1 – Surfing at Ynys Fydlyn
Ynys Fydlyn Arch
Approaching Ynys Fydlyn’s Caves – a bit too much swell to get through the tunnels.
The Carmel Head Rocky Channel System.
JF couldn’t wait for his lunch!
Lunch stop before Harry Furlough’s Rocks.
Tiderace #2 – Surfing at Harry Furlough’s Rocks.
Tiderace #3 – Carmel Head was so big and fun to surf!
A fun trip around the Stacks on the flood tide and on a fresh wintry day. Paddling today were Justine and Geth.
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.