Saturday, 2 January 2010

Winter Island Hopping

Today, after much protracted debate about weather, tides, weather and tides, weather or tides etc etc etc, four of us rendezvoused at Tingwall on the North East coast of the Mainland with a view to going to Egilsay.  Disappointingly, everyone seemed to be wearing very sensible hats!

I tried to take lots of photos today, but my camera continues to infuriate me with its clammy lens.  I have an Pentax Optio W60 and just can’t seem to find a balance between accessible camera and clean lens.  Some of you out there take lovely pictures – what am I doing wrong?!

Anyway, back to the paddle, Eynhallow Sound to the west is notorious for its tides and they are not slow at the top of Egilsay either.  However, away from these particular spots, Rousay and Wyre Sounds are relatively benign with only about 2 knots going through at Springs.


Nick crossing to Wyre

Leaving Tingwall saw a bit of head wind, becoming more beamy, together with a few fun waves.  I was convinced that we were not going anywhere, but apparently we were actually keeping a good pace – it’s funny how open crossings fool you!  We decided upon an early lunch on Wyre and took shelter in the ferry waiting room. IMGP0554 Peter and Nick landed at the Wyre slip…..IMGP0555 but Ansgar used the beach.

We left Wyre in a snow shower and a head wind across to Egilsay.  Once over the other side, the weather was lovely, the wind dropped away and the sun came out so we took a walk up to the famous church on top of the hill.


 Harry bags another islandIMGP0561St Magnus Kirk


Group shotIMGP0573 Peter, Northern Kayaker (and Harry) and Nick pose on EgilsayIMGP0583Launching from Egilsay IMGP0584 A picture of Peter not taking a picture!

Returning to the boats, we launched in sunshine and headed back towards Wyre.  The weather worsened as we got closer and another snow shower rolled in.  We headed round the south of Wyre this time and as the snow passed over,  it created a beautiful sunset over Tingwall.  A lovely end to an enjoyable day. IMGP0592 Nick heading to Tingwall at sunset

021010  Our route.  We think it was about 14 miles in total


  1. Hats look pretty silly to me....


  2. Not compared to some our others! No sticky out silly bits of fabric anywhere!

  3. NK - I had the self-same problem with my Pentax Optio camera. It drove me mad. What I've found helps is to always put the camera back into my BA pocket, even if I think I'm only a few paddle strokes away from taking another shot. I used to leave it on my lap and it would get splashed and then it's just a downward spiral - as you know.

  4. I started wrapping it up in a buff which was a little better but still not right! Normally it lives round my neck down the front of BA but still gets this horrid film all over it. It needs a lens cap of some sort I think. May have to fashion something.