Thursday 28 April
This morning was beautiful and calm. I set off with a little swell to get out and over but not even a drop of water broke over me today. Off I went for a full days paddling, I had to keep a check on my times and get to the checkpoints to try and nail a 75km day.
I did well along this coast line keeping the pace up. Today it was long beaches with lots of river crossings, pale blue water then suddenly becomes brown and murky as you cross the river mouth. I was very blessed today really with the weather, the sun came out by ten and it stayed with me all day, it was a glorious West Coast day. It was pretty magic out on the water today. The only thing that could have made this a better day was if some dolphins could have come to play, but none frolicked in front of T2 today.
I broke this paddle down into smaller sections today, I needed to do it this way, first checkpoint was Hokitika, then Kumara Junction, the location of where the Coast to Coast race starts. Nat chatted to me briefly and then I headed for Greymouth with all intentions of swinging really wide past this point and missing this huge river mouth. I saw a glistening of mirrors on the wharf and thought, Nat is there with others to say hi. Little did I know but it was Paul Caffyn with his binoculars!
I got to the 67km mark and chatted to Nat, the river mouth today was calm, really accessible, or paddle another 8km to go past and around Point Elizabeth to a beach with two rows of waves. Ben from the Grey Star newspaper, Paul and Nat were all there, armed with cameras, so I decided to call it a day. Into the river mouth I headed, how calm! Yes I am blessed, and I am lucky, so thanks all for looking out for me. Truly a very special day on the water.
Unpacked and loaded, dinner eaten thanks to Paul, venison, roast potatoes, peas and salad. I took over the venison cooking. Clean, well feed and warm. Tomorrow more of the same, eat sleep paddle repeat...
Huge thanks to Cloud 9 campsite for putting us up last night. Special mention to everyone who stopped to talk to Nat today, Neville in Hokitika, Claire with the offer of accommodation at her newly purchased Hostel, Drifting Sand, and Mark in Greymouth for offering boat support if we needed it. Always makes her day when people stop to chat. (go on, ask me to make you a coffee)
My smiles today:
The amazing weather today.
West Coast so very different and gorgeous.
Ending a day as dry as I started!
Salt encrusted face on arrival to Greymouth.
Nats knitting...we have a problem, she started with 50 stitches but now has 108 on the needles. (update, 127)
My thoughts today:
People inspire you or they drain you, pick them wisely.