Thursday, 6 September 2012

recent happenings...

Our expedition has come to a turning point and Sim and I have decided to go our seperate ways, which means that I will be continuing on this journey alone.  Attempting to paddle around the South Island in winter was never going to be an easy undertaking, and although we started out about 3 months ago now, we have only managed to paddle about 37 of those days.  Exciting weather on the West Coast made progress slow, and on several occasions we were trapped onshore for a week at a time, as huge seas pounded the coast.

Paul Caffyn had said from the start that it was never going to be easy, and our lack of daylight hours in the middle of winter left very little room for error.  Luckly we managed to survive only 3 night surf landings, and at times like this, it's always a great peace of mind to know that you're not alone.. no matter how little it actually makes the situation any better!  It's been awesome to have shared a majority of this trip with Sim, who amazingly managed to conquer the entire west coast only taking 3 rolls.. that is if you exclude when he got 'Heaphy'd'.  I think its important to recognise Sim's achievement, having paddled nearly 3/4 of the way around the South Island in winter (that is if you include the Te Waewae Bay to Milford section we paddled last winter).  So a big thanks to Sim, you are a legend!

The South Island is getting pounded by some intense weather at the moment, and I'm afraid that its a mark of the beginning of the unsettled spring weather.  But I plan to head back up to Akaroa and get paddling south as soon as the seas die down.. hopefully I'll get some nice north easterlies!  People often ask me how long I expect it to take to get back to Milford- I really don't know, and I'm in no hurry as my focus at this stage is just completing the trip.  It's looking like Stewart Island is going to have to wait for another time, which I'm happy about.  So from here to Milford, progress will no doubt be slow, but I'm cool with that.

If anyone wants to come for a paddle, that would be awesome! flick me a message, my cell number is 0221987951

:) Tara

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