It was another inauspicious start to the Eurobodalla kayak paddle from Surfside Beach in Batemans Bay, the 30 cm swell was causing havoc for one hapless kayaker who had somehow managed to capsize three times trying to egress from the beach. Eventually, after being dragged out to deeper water by the "beach master" B finally escaped the pounding surf and joined the rest of us on the glassily calm water.
The destination for today was Archeron Ledge beach, unnamed on the topographic map but situated just east of Maloneys Beach. Doug and I headed over to Square Head where there are some fun rock gardens to play in, while the others were straight-lining for Archeron Ledge beach. Doug and I wove in and out of some easy rock gardens, then paddled into the narrow slot that Mr Honey calls "the pool". I almost got washed side ways up a rock platform but my new shorter paddle made it much easier to do draw strokes and pull myself off. We popped out at the far northern end into a half metre swell and A saying "I feel like a coward now," as he had not paddled in.
Heading for Archeron Ledge
The swell was rapidly dropping as we headed east and by the time we landed at Archeron Ledge there was not much left. For some reason, perhaps they thought it was more sheltered, the group landed at the far eastern end in the shade instead of down the west end of the beach in the sun. I was wet from taking a couple of waves chest on and it felt quite cold. B had capsized again coming into the beach and must now have been thoroughly wet and chilled. Doug tried to give him some tips for getting off the beach - just simple ones like "paddle, don't just sit there," but B was having none of it and J had to walk him out into waist deep water off the beach again. I doubt I would be so patient with someone who obviously needed some instruction but refused to accept any.
We tried to hit "the pool" again on the way back but the tide had dropped too much and it was impassable so we had to back out again. A, Doug and I paddled into Cullendulla Beach to practice some eskimo rolls. My rolls did not feel as smooth as they did a couple of weeks ago but I was still getting up consistently and did not have to bail out. The air and water is getting colder and spending much time practicing is taking more mental energy. By the time we got back to Surfside Beach even the larger swells were not big enough to ride in.