Day 363...Farewell Taranaki

Sunday 23 October 2016

For the kayakers, a paddle day today! 74km Wai iti to Kiritehere Beach (just South of Marokopa). On the water. At 6.10am, and with a couple of cold waves splash in my face, I am fully awake and on my way. As I pass by Whitecliffs I see 3 kayakers paddling south, a little closer inshore than me, so I wave from a distance but I doubted that I was seen.

A couple of times during my paddle I looked over my shoulder, back at Mt Taranaki. Today again it was an amazing clear blue sky and the mountain was in full view; it is such an awesome sight. The cliffs looked like they are cut by a cookie cutter, as they are all jagged and shaped like waves edges along this coast. Caves can also be seen often along this coast and I wonder how many people have actually been and explored them. Very few I am sure.

Checkpoints with Jase went really well, I was ahead of schedule most of the trip but he was there, ready and waiting. As per normal Mr "Have-a-chat" (aka Jase) had also found new friends on nearly every beach! He waited for me and he learnt about white-baiting, and that the guys who use the hand nets are known as scoopers! Jase I think drove much further than my paddle today. Up and along numerous back roads, he discovered a tunnel at Waikawau which lead down to the beach and it seems he has had a fun filled day. Sun, adventures and discovery, and no on-water dramas from me.

I had to dodge a couple of Kontiki fishing rigs whilst paddling,  and a few little blue penguins, but all and all the swell was pleasant and the wind shifted about but mainly it was behind me, if on my side. Not to much of a bother. The last 19kms probably was the most challenging. Rougher now as the wind had arrived and picked up the small swell and as I rounded the Tirua Point it was fairly blowing me and the bigger swell along. I looked longingly in the distance at Albatross Point and had to admit to myself that I would be dreaming to think in these conditions to try and push another 25kms (or more) past and around this tip today. Nope, it was not going to happen, and to be honest after paddling the final 9km to my beach landing at Kiritehere I was pleased to be getting off the water. It was an okay beach to land at and far better than a river mouth bar to cross.

By the time we had dragged Louise up to Cuzzie and de-rigged and got sorted the wind had cooled me off and I was pleased to be out of my kayak gear and back in my woollen leggings!
We locate the last bag of chippies and munch on them while driving and at last we locate internet in time to roll the weather forecast! As predicted it is again a day off the water. I am used to this by now, so I just smile. As we drive back to our rendezvous location we share our stories and sights. Both of us have had a great day and while I write my blog, chat to the campsite kids, and say thank you to Jacobs mum for the fresh scallops, Jase cooks dinner. Showers, a cup of tea and an early night. I quietly thank Mother Nature for another glorious west coast paddling day.

My smiles today:
A full paddling day on the water.
Mr "Have-a-Chat" in action (aka Jase).
Fresh scallops, yum. Thanks.
The campground kids.
Support crews adventures.
To all my friends for their continued support. Thanks for the txts, emails and calls today.

My thoughts today:
At first they will ask why you're doing it. Later they'll ask how you did it. I do not have the answer to either yet!

Goodnight from Red, Mr "Have-a-Chat" and Cuzzie.

Ma Te Wa.


Blue-bird day at Rapanui Stream.

Blue-bird day at Rapanui Stream.

Cool walking tunnel to Waikawau Beach.

Cool walking tunnel to Waikawau Beach.