St. Kilda weekender with overnight stay in Community Hall — Sat 9-10 September 2023

St Kilda Weekend History

Another great weekender out to St. Kilda was conducted on Saturday 9th and Sunday 10th September. Weather, wind and tidal conditions were perfect for the ten club members who participated.

The St. Kilda weekender has been a feature of the ACC calendar for over ten years now. It is an easy trip requiring paddlers to carry minimal equipment. We stay in the St. Kilda Community Hall overnight and go to the pub for dinner and drinks.

It’s All About the Tides

The devil is in the detail of planning however and the critical elements lie in getting the tides just right. The trip takes in most of the Port River estuary which is highly tidal. On the wrong day the currents can be severe and in places the water just disappears at low tide.

I have used the tide in a couple of ways for this trip over the years. This time around I used the dodge tide to minimise the impact of tidal currents and extremely low water levels. A dodge tide is a phenomenon almost unique to Gulf St. Vincent and Spencer Gulf. It also occurs in the Persian Gulf and the Gulf Of Mexico. A dodge tide is where the water levels change minimally over a 24 to 48 hour period; it is if the tides miss a day! Last weekend we had a 15 hr tide on Sunday resulting in negligible current and change in water levels. The water level did not go below 1.2m during daylight hours which is most important when planning to explore the mangrove creeks of the Barker Inlet and the Section Bank at Outer Harbor.

I have also used spring tides (nothing to do with the seasons!) to create a fun “ride the tide” experience. On this type of tide we begin at Largs Bay and travel into the Outer Harbor Channel where the rapid inflow of water to the Port River due to the rising tide is quite amazing! With just an easy paddling effort you can achieve 10 or more kilometres per hour.

Departure from UniSA Kayak Shed

Departure from Uni SA Kayak Sheds

Thus trip’s group including Mark L, Abelardo, Terry, Greg, Anthony, Bella, Charlie, Marina, Giresh and myself. We assembled at the UniSA kayak shed near Adelaide Marina on the main arm of the Port River to launch for the 16Km paddle out to St. Kilda. This is the first time we launched from here and it was most convenient as we could leave our vehicles locked up securely in the compound. We planned to finish the trip here as well. Big thanks to club member Dr. Scott Polley, who is a senior lecturer at UniSA for granting access.

North Arm and Ships Graveyard

Paddling Amoungst Ship’s Graveyard (2)

The journey out to St. Kilda was via The North Arm and Barker Inlet which is such a stunning and little known part of Adelaide. Travelling up the North Arm we observed the maritime relics left abandoned in the “Ships Graveyard”  early last century. The remains of vessels such as the Glaucus, Garthneil and Seminole give an insight into early shipping in South Australia. You may find more information about this unique section of the River. 

Barker Inlet and Swan Alley

Even more captivating was the exploration of the mangrove creeks of the Barker Inlet. When paddling through the maze of creeks flowing off the “mainland” you get the feeling that you’re far from civilization. It’s a stunning, waterlogged forest. Exploring comes with a warning! You have to know the impact of the tides. Get it wrong and you can encounter fast flowing water that can wash you under low tree branches resulting in capsize and a heap of real issues. At the other end of the spectrum you can run out of water…the creeks go dry at low tide heights. The creeks are best paddled on a dodge tide with a water level of at least 1m which is what we had!

Exiting Swan Alley

Our journey entered the system via Swan Alley. We then took the Embankment Channel which is artificial and links  Burrows Creek, Post Creek and Garnets Creek. Due to the tide height there wasn’t much dry land for lunch. We exited Burrows Creek to find a small sand island to haul out on before returning to the mangroves and continuing down the channel.

Arrival at St Kilda and Community Hall

On exiting the mangroves the next target was the St Kilda Channel and down to the St. Kilda Boat Club to store kayaks overnight and walk to the Community Hall. The pub meal was a little disappointing for some…. squid snitty not up to the usual standard!

Return via Bird Island and Outer Harbor

Sunday began with even better weather for our journey out to Bird Island and the Outer Harbor breakwater. Bird Island is a sand spit that has been increasing in size since I have been visiting the area. I first remember it some 20 years ago as a couple of hundred metre strip of sand running northward from the breakwater without much vegetation but plenty of bird life. It is now a couple of kilometres long and well covered with vegetation and trees. It is an important bird breeding area and one of the few location in Adelaide that Pelicans raise their young. The sand flats to the NW of the breakwater are stunning. It is easy to imagine you’re in the Bahamas!

There were also plenty of long nosed fur seals on the breakwater. Several young ones swam some distance with us and may have never seen a kayaker before.

St Kilda Dusk

The group had a slight incoming tidal current to push us the final few kilometres back to the shed. On the way we got to see one of the Naval ships under construction and were warned by Mark to stay out of the “Restricted Zone”; no saboteurs allowed!

When back to the shed it was a quick clean up of gear on the nice lawned area of the UniSA compound. A great weekend had by all!


Overall statistics (Links point to GPX track files)


Cave near Stansbury

Plan B Paddle – Port Vincent to Edithburgh and then Troubridge Island — 27 – 29 May 2023

Early Arrival at Port Vincent

The original Plan A was to paddle out to Wardang Island and spend a couple of nights camped on Goose Island but the weather failed to cooperate, so Phil as Trip Leader suggested a Plan B, paddling on the eastern side of Yorke Peninsula from Port Vincent to Stansbury and then Edithburgh while car camping at caravan parks and visiting the local pubs for dinner. Then on Monday a return trip to Troubridge Island if conditions were suitable.

Winds were forecast W to WNW over weekend, generally below 15Kn so the east coast of Yorkes offered more protection by paddling close inshore. We ended up with 5 members booked from the original 11: Phil, Simon, Abelardo, Giresh and Mark opted to explore the coastline we hadn’t paddled previously.

It was good to form our own opinions of this section of the coast after hearing varied opinions.

Phil and I drove down on Friday and checked into Port Vincent Caravan Park, a well setup park with unpowered sites protected from westerly winds.

Squid Snitzel at Pt Vincent

Squid Schnitzel at Pt Vincent

Once settled in we took the opportunity to catch up with local Adelaide Canoe Club members Carol and Robert.  We discussed possible Club involvement in the Salt Water Classic event planned for April next year, when a flotilla of wooden boats and kayaks will be sailing, rowing, motoring, and paddling from Stansbury to Port Vincent, taking advantage of the flood tide on the day. Robert took the opportunity to show us his wooden boat collection which was very impressive (as you can see in the pictures).

Carol and Robert offered to help with the car shuttle when we arrived at Stansbury and also recommended the Dalrymple Hotel there, but emphasised that we had to make a reservation –  nothing like local knowledge!

An easy walk to the Ventnor Hotel on Friday night – excellent squid schnitzel, comparable to our visits to the St Kilda Hotel when paddling Barker Inlet.

Day 1: Port Vincent to Stansbury 

Paddlers before launching in Pt Vincent

Paddlers before launching in Pt Vincent

The rest of our group arrived at the Port Vincent Yacht Club about 10:30am on Saturday, a nice easy location to launch just adjacent to the Port Vincent Kiosk – very handy for coffee and a range of seafood – and noted for future trips.

Robert and Carol soon joined us and after introductions and a couple of pictures we were all on water about 11.40am. They had arrived in their 16´ ‘Double Ender’ wooden boat, lovingly built by Robert from plans by Doug Hyland of Maine, USA which were styled after the lobster boats used in the area about 100 years ago. The day was a bit overcast and wind around 10kn W so best option was to hug the coast as we paddled south.

Robert and Carol easily kept up with the kayaks and looked great on water, reinforcing the attraction of the concept for the Salt Water Classic paddle with a range of boats and kayaks. With sunshine breaking through the cloud cover, we spotted a stingray then a pod of dolphins, so the omens promised a good paddle!

Rob and Carol joining the start of paddle at Pt Vincent

Rob and Carol joining the start of paddle at Pt Vincent

Around 1pm we said farewell then worked our way into the cliffs, admiring the stunning formations which only improved as we paddled south. Erosion over the millennia has formed a beautiful landscape along this section of the coast.

We encountered several overhanging rocks and selected one that looked stable and took the opportunity for a group photo.

Paddling close inshore we had to remain alert for limestone outcrops that just popped up unexpectedly – reminded me of our recent trip to Parnka Point on the Coorong.

The first stage of the paddle was turning out to be above expectations and we made several stops along the way to admire the cliff formations, we even spotted a beach that might be suitable for an overnight stop with the right tide.

We knew we were close to Stansbury when we spotted the jetty and shortly after there was Robert on the boat ramp breakwater taking photos as we approached. After being entertained by the numerous seals resting on the breakwater we continued along the township coastline of Stansbury, arriving about 3.30pm to a very kayak-friendly caravan park with a nice sandy beach, perfect for landing and launching kayaks just in front of the unpowered campsites.

Arriving to Stansbury

Arriving to Stansbury

Wasn’t long before we had checked in and met by Robert with his kind offer to ferry drivers back to Port Vincent to collect our vehicles. Phil booked us into the caravan park while waiting for our return with the cars and camping gear.

We quickly set up camp overlooking the beach, before heading off in search of the Dalrymple Hotel, we couldn’t muck around as we had a table booked for 5.45pm – yes, the restaurant is popular!

Once again, squid schnitzel was on the menu. Strolled back along the beach to the camp kitchen for a chat with supper and discuss the day’s adventure and plans for the next day and then into our waiting tents for a well-deserved rest.

Day 2: Stansbury to Edithburgh

A bit of wind and rain overnight but tents still standing in the morning, although Phil decided to take his tarp down overnight before it blew away. After a quick breakfast our first task was to ferry all the cars to Edithburgh with Abelardo driving us back to the launch site.

Headed inshore after clearing the sandbar, more wind at start of paddle but good protection inshore, the stunning scenery continued.

The Accolade II, from Adelaide Brighton Cement

The Accolade II, from Adelaide Brighton Cement

Wasn’t long before we spotted a ship in the distance at Klein Point, moored close inshore. It turned out to be the Accolade II, the Adelaide Brighton Cement (ABC) ship that transports limestone to Birkenhead at Port Adelaide about 4 times per week. We later heard that Simon’s Dad used to be an Officer on the Accolade I and II as well as the Troubridge. Simon has fond memories of attending Christmas parties at ABC as a “little tacker”, so this trip ended up being a very significant paddle down memory lane for Simon.

As we progressed south the coastal formations changed noticeably, with much more of a limestone appearance and not the coloured sedimentary layers.

The next coastal feature was the Lime Kiln Ruin at Wool Bay, looking almost like a small temple when we approached. It is the only one remaining of the six (6) built to produce quicklime by heating limestone, an important ingredient in mortar and brick making in the late 19th Century. The Kiln operated until the 1950’s.

Limestone near Stansbury

Limestone near Stansbury

The next significant structure we encountered was the Port Giles Jetty – 340m in length and Phil said sharks loitered around the end (might be an old surfer’s myth!) so we took the shortcut close inshore. The Jetty and adjacent storage silos are used to store and ship grain from the Lower Yorke Peninsula.

Our next challenge was a crossing of 4 to 5km across Coobowie Bay, in what looked like a 15kn westerly wind, possibly gusting higher occasionally. No more protection from the stunning cliffs so time to put some effort into our paddling. Coobowie Bay is home to the local oyster industry and according to Carol also serves great meals at the local pub – perhaps next trip! We opted for a short stop at a boat launch site prior to tackling the crossing.

Back on water we set course for a prominent group of pine trees in the vicinity of Edithburgh. As expected, the crossing was just a head down slog but we soon made out the brightly coloured Edithburgh Tidal Pool as we approached the shore and the wind eased.

Lime Kiln Ruin at Wool Bay

Lime Kiln Ruin at Wool Bay

We paddled past the Jetty then Boat Harbour and on to Sultana Point Jetty and a small beach we had previously selected as a landing point. After checking in we had a short portage up to a nice grassy unpowered campsite well sheltered from any southerly wind.

Too far to walk to the pub so Abelardo with the tidiest car provided a taxi service. We dined at the Edithburgh Hotel on Edith Street, again a very popular hotel and three (3) of us can recommend the slow cooked lamb shanks.

A stunning evening, couldn’t hear any wind or rain overnight until a light shower just before 7am.

Day 3: Troubridge Island Return

Sail up on our way to Troubridge Island

Sail up on our way to Troubridge Island

Hardly any wind overnight and only light rain before we poked our heads from the tents, very excited about paddling to Troubridge Island for morning tea and coffee, and the conditions looked great with only a light westerly breeze, probably below 6Kn for the 8Km crossing.

The island was named by Captain Flinders in 1802 after the Commander of the Fleet at the Battle of the Nile, Sir Thomas Troubridge.

We rushed through breakfast, loaded the kayaks and moved to the Boat Ramp for our departure. No mucking around, we were keen to be on water to take advantage of the conditions. Things only got better as we approached the Island and wasn’t long before we were paddling in tropical-looking turquoise waters in full sun. The real extent of the shoal was visible about 1.5Km out, tide was approaching high water mark with at least 1m of water as we approached the Lighthouse – perfect!

Troubridge Island

Sail up on our way to Troubridge Island

We were amazed at how extensive the shoal spreads around the Island, very apparent how vessels came to grief in the past.  According to Google there were 33 wrecks and groundings until the Lighthouse was constructed in 1856.

Even managed to try out Phil’s 1m² Pacific Action sail with the light breeze, a lot more relaxing than my 1.5m² but the larger sail would have been perfect with the 6Kn westerly.

The noise of numerous birds greeted us as we approached, we could see a mass of them nesting on the sandbar on the SW end of the Island.

The bright red freshly painted lighthouse stood out, contrasting the turquoise waters and white sands of the shoal.

We set up on the table in front of the Keepers Cottage with an amazing view and the constant sound of the birdlife. I will let the pictures tell the story! How lucky we were with the weather and our visit has inspired us to investigate the possibily of arranging a couple of days’ overnight stay for a future visit.

Coffee and cake at Troubridge Island

Coffee and cake at Troubridge Island

After coffee, cake and a few pictures to capture the moment we were back on water for the return paddle, but not without a circumnavigation to appreciate the size of the bird population.

Wind had picked up on the return as forecast so we settled in for a heads down paddle with the Water Tower as reference point until we got in closer and spotted the boat ramp.

We made good time and were soon back in the safety of the harbour, Abelardo leading the way (having decided to use the last stage for a bit of pace training).

Back in harbour about 2.30pm, Giresh and Phil decided to show off with a couple of celebratory rolls – judging by their reactions the water was cold!  We landed at the boat ramp and soon had the kayaks loaded before heading back to Adelaide.

Giresh left for the west coast of Yorkes for another 2 days of paddling while Abelardo, Phil and Mark set off for the return drive to Adelaide.

Our last day’s paddle completed a perfect trip exploring a section of the coast that we hadn’t paddled before, but a trip we will definitely repeat. Lots of stunning scenery and great to visit the towns of Port Vincent, Stansbury and Edithburgh and compare the squid schnitzels along the Peninsula.

It was great to catch up with club members Carol and Robert and we appreciated the assistance in shuttling cars as well as local advice. Both are involved in preparing for the Salt Water Classic in 2024 for Wooden Boats and Kayaks intending to catch the tide from Stansbury to Port Vincent. Rest assured we would love to be involved and the weekend of 13/14th April 2024 is now in the Club calendar, so consider the date for your long term planning.

Overall Statistics


A fantastic trip so very close to Adelaide CBD with lots of options available, including staying on Troubridge Island. A great future alternative back-up for Wardang Island’s trips or just to add to our paddling calendar.

A great Plan B Phil, well done!

Click on the maps below to download the GPX files

GPS Port Vincent to Stansbury

GPS Port Vincent to Stansbury

Stansbury to Edithburgh

Stansbury – Edithburgh

Tour of Lefevre Peninsula

The Loop

Great suggestion from Mike Dunn on the WhatsApp channel on Friday for a paddle with a difference – doing a loop of the Lefevre Peninsula. The plan was to  launch from the Outer Harbor area, paddle down the Port River, portage across Bower Road into West Lakes, paddle south to Oarsman Reserve,  portage again across Military Road over the Tennyson Dunes and into the sea again – just in time to catch the southerly wind for the 13km final leg back to Outer Harbor. Distance was estimated to be about 28km. We had an ebb tide to begin the paddle so expected to work on our way up the Port River.

I felt I couldn’t resist Mike’s suggestion and was feeling pretty good about our Training Session at Tiranna Way on Friday so agreed to join up with Mike for his adventure.

The Start

Departure was from the small boat ramp just down from the Royal South Australian Yacht Squadron (RSAYS) at 9am, plenty of space for leaving our cars. Once we had loaded our very important trolleys for this paddle, as it requiring a couple of portage sections we were on our way by 9.30am.

Our sightseeing started with the Container Terminal – no shipping in sight so we explored underneath the concrete wharf which looked all very well maintained. As we approached Port River past the Snapper Point Power Station the ebb tide was very evident and even managed to practice some ferry gliding.

Mutton Cove Conservation Park

We had the river to ourselves as we paddled up past Mutton Cove Conservation Park. It’s great to see the increase in mangrove growth. This was a regular lunchtime break and the area has gradually improved, largely thanks to the local community group.

The regeneration of Mutton Cove Conservation Park become very evident as we approached ASC and were almost swept into mid channel by the tidal flow coming out from the small creeks that have been restored. This was all noted as a potential area for some whitewater skills practice when tides are favorable.

We made sure we were on the correct side of the Exclusion Zone buoys of the ASC building to ensure we didn’t set of any alarms. Brought back lots of fond memories to see a Collins Class Submarine on the Hardstand outside the Production Shed. The work on the Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs) seems to be progressing well with one in the water for final fit-out prior to Trials and another on the hard stand under construction.

Snowden Beach

Near Snowden Beach we spotted a small wooden boat in the distance. As it approached we saw it was skippered by club members Bernard and Frances Goble. They were doing a Sea Trial prior to departing for the Wooden Boat Festival in Hobart. Bernard had previously given Mike a call to advise that we might encounter them on water. We kept them company as we paddled into Port Adelaide and stopped at Cruickshanks Beach for a leg stretch and lunch.

After lunch our little flotilla continued on its way under the Birkenhead Bridge. We past all the construction happening around the old Fletches Dock and then up into Port Creek and what used to be called Port Misery when sailing ships moored there.

Crossing Bower Road

Water was becoming shallower as we approached the railway bridge before Bower Road. We said our farewell to Bernard and Frances. It was great having their company as we explored the Port. I’m sure our little flotilla was observed by a few of the locals.

We soon ran out of water after managing to navigate the many small rocks leading up to Bower Road. We must approach the council about a nice sandy beach for future trips! The portage across Bower Road went well, interesting dodging traffic with a 5m kayak in tow.

The new home for Paddle South Australia and West Lakes Canoe Club is looking near to completion. It should be a great venue for aquatic activities. We rolled our kayaks down to the beach and were soon back on water for the West Lakes leg of the paddle. Plenty of rowing activity around so we kept out of the way as we approached PAC Rowing Sheds and a busy event.

The forecast southerly had picked up as we approached West Lakes Boulevard bridge. And yet another surprise as we approached a group of kayakers – club members Bella and Anthony out on the water with visiting family.

Oarsman Reserve

We soon reached Oarsman Reserve and brought out our trolleys again. We navigated Military Road and found our way down to the beach via the backstreets of Tennyson. Much easier portage and no rocks to avoid.

The wind had certainly picked up and we searched the horizon for Matt Condon paddling his Audax up from Semaphore to join us on our final leg.

After safely getting through the surf on the Tennyson sandbar we headed further out and headed for Semaphore with Matt. Swell was on our beam and wind picking up so we delayed putting up sails until we reached Semaphore South when the wind was on our backs. I hadn’t used my sail for over 12 months. I asked Mike to stabilize my kayak until I got the Pacific Action rigged and we headed towards Largs Bay. All went well and Matt kept us company until Semaphore then headed back to his beach.

No wind

We had Outer Harbor breakwater in sight but the wind had dropped considerably. Down sails and back to paddling – just as well as the conditions as we rounded the breakwater were very messy but thankfully no water traffic around. Soon had the Overseas Terminal in sight then around the corner and back to our departure point. We both agreed we would sleep well that night after 32km and roughly 6.5 hrs in our kayaks. A fantastic paddle in various conditions with lots of interesting sites on the way.

Thanks Mike for organsing and many thanks to Bernard, Frances, Bella, Anthony (and family) and Matt for joining us during our adventure.  This is definitely a paddle that we will repeat, so keep your eyes on the calendar.

Port Augusta paddle — 2 July 2022

Spencer Gulf

Mangroves in Spencer Gulf

Simon, Anne, Kaye and Stephen joined the locals Steve and Greg for a paddle from Port Augusta to the top of Spencer Gulf. Greg supplied a couple of maps, (so we wouldn’t get lost) with the highlight points marked. We started with the wind and tide helping as we paddled past Matthew Flinders’ lookout at Red Cliffs and under the railway bridge. Then with mangroves on one side and the Flinders Ranges on the other we headed north. Steve suddenly led us into the mangroves, negotiating an obscure entrance to show us the historic salt works.

On Foot

We climbed a sand hill to find old concrete tanks and a large rusted valve. The tracks around the area were very slippery.  We walked around and saw an old flood gate used to control the water flow into the salt pans. Steve also pointed out the directions of major Aboriginal trade routes and the importance of the Port Augusta area as a meeting place for these.

Top of the Gulf

Kaye and Steve in Spencer Gulf

Back in the water we paddled under the ruins of the salt works trolley bridge as the Gulf started to narrow significantly. Approaching the top of the Gulf required single file paddling and careful steering around the tight bends, particularly for Kaye and Stephen in their double kayak. Luckily there was a wider turning area at Yorkeys Crossing. Greg paddled through the pipe under the road crossing and informed us that it was definitely the top as he was out of water. We made a hasty retreat as the tide had turned and we were noticing the drop in water level. We made it past the old bridge without hitting submerged concrete blocks and back into wider and deeper water.

Paddle Back

The paddle back saw us zig zag from one side to the other to gain some shelter from the wind which was definitely blowing much stronger than forecast. We also had a much needed rest in the lee of a small island. Lunch was enjoyed at the rail bridge by Red Cliffs before facing the last exposed stretch back to the cars. The outgoing tide working against the strong wind set up rough choppy waves, but nothing we all couldn’t handle. Many thanks to Greg and Steve for escorting us on this magnificent paddle. We covered about 20 km and besides the great scenery saw lots of birds, Great Egrets, White Faces Herons, Pied Cormorants, Hoary Headed Grebes and also seal near the launch.

No Cuttlefish

The weekend was to include diving with the cuttlefish at Whyalla. However, a bad weather forecast caused the Dive Shop to cancel our bookings. Kaye and Stephen also missed out on their glass bottom boat tour of the cuttlefish. We will just have to return another time.

Port Augusta route

Coffin Bay — 14-17 February 2022

First leg to Black Springs

Starting the trip

Anne and Simon Langsford were joined by Frances and Bernard Goble, Phil Doddridge, Mark Loram, Stephen Carter, Matthew Eldred, Simon Delaine, Charles Walker, Jo Molsher, Julie Rohde and Peter Vincent to paddle from Coffin Bay township out into the Coffin Bay National Park. The first day saw us heading out of the town bay towards Rabbit Island. The tide was very low by the time we got there and some of us walked our kayaks over the Mussel and Razor Fish beds. However, it was not long before we hit deep water again and those with sails enjoyed a good tail wind.

When we stopped for lunch on the beach past the Yangie Bay inlet Julie found her missing spray deck which had become squashed up in the bow as she packed other things. At last water-tight she enjoyed the rest of the day.

We arrived at Black Springs with plenty of time to pitch camp and relax, looking out over the amazingly blue ocean. After dinner that evening it started raining, and Simon and Anne’s emergency shelter was put to good use! as we sat huddled under it. Most people headed to bed early as we planned an early start to catch the tide around Point Longnose.

Lightning Day

So much serenity

Lightning, thunder and heavy rain greeted us the next morning, so the early start was postponed. By mid-morning the storm had passed but the wind forecast made paddling onwards unwise, so we did the walk to view Black Rocks on the southern side of the peninsula, then after lunch split into groups to paddle close to camp. One group went along the picturesque rocks while another group went out to more open water while Jo did her first sailing effort. Although both paddles were much shorter than planned everyone had an enjoyable day.

Windy Day

Paddling along the coast

Wednesday’s wind forecast was bad – 20 knot winds with stronger gusts. Change of plan again! We paddled through the oyster beds and over to Point Longnose where we had a short stop while Mark emptied his water-filled front compartment and put the hatch on properly. Around Point Longnose is a beautiful beach where we had lunch before retracing our steps. Each day Matt would be seen looking for cockles on the beach to bait his fishing hook. He did catch some Whiting, but alas too small to keep so we didn’t get fresh fish for dinner.

Return Day

Preparing the departure

Now we had spent 3 days at Black Springs camp and there was not enough time left to venture out to Point Sir Isaac, so we decided to return to Coffin Bay township. Along the rocky cliffs we came across some seal pups that played with us and followed us for about half an hour. Then we headed to The Brothers islands so Peter could check out the birdlife. We were rewarded with sighting the rare Rock Parrots and there were also some large sea lions, one of which gave an aggressive display towards the kayaks before leaving us alone.

The group split again into ‘paddlers’ and ‘sailers’ to cross over to the northern shore of the bay. Lunch on a sand beach with a very shallow approach made us walk the kayaks again to save scratching them too much. Then it was a pleasant paddle along the rocky cliffs with some of us paddling into Mount Dutton Bay for a short distance.

Wrap up

Coffin Bay Strava

Bernard, Frances and Steve left the group to head homeward. The rest of us pitched camp at the caravan park and then headed to the pub for a drink and dinner.

In total we paddled about 66 km, a bit short of the plan but we had to manage the weather conditions and even with this shortened trip everyone enjoyed the trip.

Some memorable comments:

  • OK everyone, the plan for today is changed, – again. – Anne
  • We have got to know this camp site well. – Frances
  • I’m not talking about the wind forecast. – Simon L
  • Can we stay here another night?  -Text message from Jo (safely in her tent during the storm)
  • I’m glad I remembered everything and I didn’t capsize. – Simon D
  • My jaw is sore from smiling so much, the sailing was so much fun. – Matt
  • I’ve found my spray deck.  – Julie
  • Thunder and lightning, very, very frightening.  – Julie
  • The colour of the water at camp, amazing blue.-  Charlie
  • Great paddling with new people. – Stephen

Check the facebook post for additional pictures

Sea lions

Huddle to avoid the rain

Paddling with seals

Delta Fleet

Checking the landscape

Resting at the campground

Downwind from Seaclif — 1 February 2022

Downwind from Seacliff

Great Seacliff paddle Tuesday with four (4) paddlers (Phil, Mark, Anthony and Simon) braving the forecasted conditions of a 20kn southerly. Phil opted for a downwind run to West Beach to take advantage of the blow. Started off well, at least until we had a capsize just before the Brighton Jetty but soon on our way again.

No need for sail, just had to hang on and get blown up the coast! We had adjusted to the conditions just of Somerton Park, just as well as the wind started to increase with horizontal spray spreading out in front of our kayaks, an indication that wind speed was getting up to 30kn. Aside from the Temptation Catamaran, we were the only ones out on water. She was heading south with the deck covered in fun seeking sailors, we could see waves breaking over the bows.

Riding waves from Seacliff

The last leg from Glenelg to West Beach Boat Ramp was the most challenging, when we got hit by 1.5 to 2m waves forming on the sandbars. After gusts of 30kn plus hitting us, we opted to seek the shelter of West Beach Boat Ramp. A fantastic paddle and enjoy the pics – I managed to get a couple while keeping a good lookout for inbound swell.

Peer Paddle Semaphore South 30 January 2022

Preparations under way before departure

Sails up on our way back to Semaphore

Another great Sunday morning paddle from Semaphore South last Sunday 30th Jan. A good turnout with six (6) paddlers out on water. Paddlers were Matt, Julie (up from Meningie – love that devotion to paddling!) , Abelardo, Shauna, Nicholas and Mark.

On water about 9am and paddled south to the West Lakes inlet and then that little bit extra to Grange Jetty. SW wind below 10-12kn, just enough for Shauna to unwrap her Flat Earth sail.

Once again we were entertained with a sky diving exhibition towards the end of the paddle and a friendly seal at the northern end of the breakwater – totally oblivious to the beach walkers. Finished up with coffee at Noonies, a great way to end the mornings paddling.

Semaphore South Peer Paddle — 9 January 2022

Towards North HavenEight of us (Matt, Bella, Anthony, Anthony, Abelardo, Bruce, Simon D and Nicholas) departed the sunny Semaphore South shores with almost no wind, very flat seas and lots of sunshine. Along the way to North Haven, we navigated through fleets of yachts, stand up paddlers, and boaties out fishing. Simon had his new kayak out for its longest paddle yet, which was completed with apparent ease. Some took a break at North Haven beach while others practised manoeuvres. The way back was a little more work, with headwinds up to 14 knots and the water a little more lumpy – yet it was still very pleasant. No one was eaten by sharks, run over by yachts, nor had aircraft land on them. So all-in-all, a successful paddle!

Thanks to Nicholas for pictures and very entertaining report.