Celebrate the Solstice

It’s the Winter Solstice in the Southern Hemisphere. That day of the year when we know that things will only get better; the days will slowly get longer giving us more time to go paddling. Of course if you’re in the Northern hemisphere the only thing that you have to look forward to is the coming of the rain, sleet and snow.

Two of our “gentlemen” paddlers, Steve and myself decided to “paddle in the solstice” with a quick surf session at our local spot. Fortunately for us the surf was very gentle today which was in keeping with our character, however we certainly had a heap of fun.

You will notice that Steve and I actually put on a “shortie” wetsuit to protect ourselves from the cold, something that you northern hemisphere paddlers probably only break out in mid summer 🙂

The video is short and the surf was small, but I’m sure you will get idea.

Happy Solstice
Ian……PaddlingSouth

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Friday Fun

Friday; the last day of the working week for some and others just another day on the calendar. The sun is shining, the breeze is pleasant so decisions need to be made. I could have slipped over to the lawn bowls rink for a few ends; although they banned me because of my “over-arm” action. I could have spent the day in the garden, except I’ve done my 2 days gardening for the year already, so it was definitely hit the waves time.

Robyn, our photographer, Steve and myself strapped the surf kayaks to the roof and set off for a quick fun paddle. The view along the local coast showed some nice wave sets coming in and quite a few surfers in the water.

Looking south along the coast

We were quickly into a few waves with Steve demonstrating his ability to take off on the most steep part of the wave and sometimes make it through to the green section, although not all the time.

Steve takes off steep and fast

Sometimes a steep and fast take off works….but not always

Steve saves himself again

Ian going hard on a nice green wave

The waves were interesting to paddle with continuous sets coming in, making it hard work just to get out the back. Of course not all things went to plan all the time and there were a few got dumpings that made sure your sinus cavity was clear.

Steve tries a 360 maneuver and ends up doing a back loop.

Sometimes things can get a little crowded even with just the 2 of us paddling for a wave.

Steve ready to drop in as Ian tries a steep take off

Ian goes down the line and then…..

I think that one hurt a bit

Occasionally you get trashed by one wave, rolling up to get the same treatment again

Ready for another smashing wave

But it’s all smiles as we head for home.

That put a smile on his dial

Coffee shop bound

Just another Friday morning…… PaddlingSouth,

He who dies with the most toys wins !!!

He who dies with the most TOYS wins !!! or maybe it’s He who has the most FUN wins !!!.

I’m not really sure which one is true but I think that I am having a bet each way. Maybe it’s the competitive streak coming out in us older paddlers. They say that when you get to a certain age you tone down the “competitive streak” in your personality. Maybe that’s true for some, but it seems not true of some “PaddlingSouth”. Even if we cant compete at a high level anymore or have the stamina for ultra marathon journeys we still want to WIN.

When riding road bikes we would never consider drafting someone for miles and then attacking as the finishing line approaches or ganging up on someone in the final sprint. There would be no competition for the best wave when surf kayaking or the last pasty at the cafe. Well maybe sometimes; OK ..ALWAYS.

But there is one area that I try to have a clear lead and that is TOYS….and here’s another one for the toybox.

My new toy....Mega Surf ON

My new toy….Mega Surf ON

After years of paddling all sorts of surf and WW kayaks in ocean surf I recently acquired a Mega Surf ON. This is a great craft for just having fun, but is still a solid performer having the same hull as the Mega Bullitt kayak. My old bones are just loving it.

Mega Surf ON

Mega Surf ON… out for a quick surf.. it was only a tiny swell but we still had FUN

Small but at least they were clean

Small but at least they were clean

Like the new hat ? Not really a toy but my new Ocean paddling Hat from our local kayak shop stays on in all conditions, even when rolling in the surf. Have to be Sun Smart with temperatures around 32° C.

Of course I’m not the only one having fun in the surf.

Steve in his new toy

Steve in his new toy

I’m not the only one with a passion for new toys. Robyn our hard working photographer, is the owner of a new Fatbike. 5″ tyres and lots of gears makes it perfect for zipping along the beach with her camera, tackling the sandy tracks in the northern arid lands and superb fun along the 4WD tracks.

Two FatBikes on the beach

Two FatBikes on the deserted beaches at Robe, South Australia.

He who dies with the most toys wins !…if I’m not winning then I must be a close second.
Have Fun…Ian