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Cheers and thanks for your interest. Hayley
Monday, March 15, 2010
S54 20.398 and W36 15.872
I woke and rose early, keen to get under way knowing we had 50 nautical miles to cover to get to our destination. Once underway it was clear to me that we were up for a rough ride as the swell from the strong but brief storm caused the seas to be steep and lumpy.
The movement took some of us by surprise. Beth-Anne headed straight to her bunk and I laid low and offered to do a watch knowing the fresh air would help. For most of the day South Georgia remained hidden amongst dense and rain saturated clouds. Icebergs had been blown towards the coast so there were a few obstacles to keep a keen eye out for.
Towards the end of the day I enjoyed seeing the coast line I would paddle tomorrow from a distance. Cobblers Cove, Godthul and Ocean Harbour came into view and the outer coastline was a wash of white water from the waves that crashed then disintegrated.
Once anchored in the protective bay of Ocean Harbour I immediately launched my kayak eager to be on my way and establish a camp site before dark. Once on the water I decided to paddle about abit, no specific destination in mind, really just keen to take a looksey around the area.
A still standing, whaling ship wreck was made home by a number of nesting cormorants, fur seals dominated most of the sounds and scenes of the bay however I saw the largest Elephant Seals so far on my voyage. One surfaced fairly close to where I was obliviously drifting, it looked like a submarine as its 4 tonne blubbery body suddenly appeared at my bow. It immediately showed me whose boss as he inflated his sexy trunk, which was then followed by the guttural sound of its not so sexy grunt.
It was just after 5.00pm and the light was getting dimmer and so I found a patch of beach and pitched my perfectly dry tent in the rain.
As I sit here now perched on my camping mat, my sleeping bag wrapped around my shoulders and writing this blog entry by torch light, it is as usual the Fur seal calls that dominate my night-time entertainment. Although I think a few more Ellies have since landed therefore those guttural, burp-like sounds will be what I will try and fall asleep to.
Ahh it is divine to be back in my cosy, safe tent and for a change there is not a breath of wind. I do have a good weather window tomorrow morning, so I will be up at first light to paddle the 15 nm to Cumberland Sound. The following day a strong NW system is building therefore I do need to be within a short paddle distance from King Edward Point for the morning of March 17th but I will be camping tomorrow night, just close by.
Tomorrow will be a day of reflection as I paddle for the last time along the scenic shores of South Georgia and by evening my mind will be filled with, expressions, thoughts and feelings as I try to sum-up what this journey has meant to me. I am pretty certain I won't sleep tomorrow night, in my attempt to make my final night alone, camping on the shores of South Georgia, last the longest time.
Good night to you all and pleasant and peaceful dreams