South Coast News [23]

By Nick Gill

In The Deep South

There has been a bit of paddling on the far south coast of NSW and into Victoria. Myself, Jacque Windh and Norm Sanders spent a week in Nadgee Nature Reserve. We spent most of our time at Nadgee Bech and Merrica River, undertaking day paddles, slothing and a number of walks. Meanwhile Ron Mudie has been off on a solo adventure, paddling from Mallacoota to Wingan Inlet. Ron had a number of wildlife encounters. Camping just north of the inlet, he was visited one morning by a dingo. Ron also came across a seal, asleep while adrift on the water. Ron ran his hand gently along the seal, waking it up.

Boat Building

Boat building and modification is also on the agenda. Ron Mudie is building a Greenland style boat. Ron reports that he will have a mould off in a few weeks. The boat will be along the lines of a Nordkapp, with VCP hatches and a length of 17’10”. Ron will be trialling an integrated rudder system on the boat, and plans to tape it together, avoiding lumps of resin at each end. Norm Sanders is busy building a wooden kayak. David Winkworth has modified his Puffin to do away with the large (and leaky) rear hatch. Dave has cut away the existing plastic hatch coaming and has attached a moulded fibreglass plate that takes a VCP hatch. Being a Puffin owner myself, I agree with the need for improvement in the rear hatch Puffin setup. However, I am not sure that I am brave as Dave. Dave, keep us posted.

Sedimentary Sea Kayaks

Sea kayaks were recently spotted by Norm Sanders on the Tuross estuary. The kayakers were geomorphologists from James Cook University. They were conducting research on sedimentation in the estuary and use Seafarers as a platform from which to sample estuary sediments. As part of their visit they talked to the local community Tuross estuary management group, about their work and the effects of upstream logging.

Jervis Bay Weekend

The weekend at Honeymoon Bay on the 11th and 12th of February was well attended by paddlers from Sydney, Canberra and elsewhere. Many of those who came were new or relatively new to the sea kayaking. The weekend was relaxed and the weather near perfect. Highlights included caves, surfing and instruction in Honeymoon Bay itself. Feedback so far indicates that the newcomers appreciated the weekend and were able to gain skills and new experiences, such as going into sea caves little wider than one’s kayak.

Canberra Paddling

The Canberra Pod is meeting on Wednesday evenings at 6pm for paddling on Lake Burley Griffin. Meet at Yarralumla Bay. Call Nicholas Gill or any other Canberra Paddlers for information. Meanwhile, the number of active Canberra Members continues to grow, with David Whyte the latest to join. A recent visitor was John Cordwell from Bowral, who is looking to purchase a kayak. Jacque Windh is currently in New Zealand with her Feathercraft. On a competative note, Arunas Pilka and John Wilde recently took part in the annual Lake Burley Griffin Bash. Arunas, in his Arctic Raider, managed to break the course sea kayak record by some ten minutes.