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Sea Kayaking - Scotland - Staffa Overnighter - pt 1.

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Published on Jul 7, 2012

Didn't we do well? Since returning from this trip, reviewing the footage, editing the video e.t.c. I have thought long and hard, whether this is the best trip I've done, thus far? and the answer is.........probably!! On the 17th January, this year, Me and Matt,did Puffin Island, Anglesey, in the most amazing weather,especially considering it was in the middle of a bad spell. At the time, we questioned whether or not, we had done the best paddle of the year, first time out. Well we can safely say that isn't the case now. This trip was absolutely sensational. When editing a video like this, the really hard bit is, the amount of footage you leave out!! This trip has been on my mind for 20yrs or more. Done the diving up the Sound of Mull, and all around Oban, always wanted to get out here..........finally did it. We left Oban 10am ish, and did the Corran, and Lochaline Ferries, as they wanted £190 return from Oban. Yes, that's £190 for a journey of little over 10miles.....draw your own conclusion, but here's a pointer - RIP OFF. By the time we got to Ulva, on the West of Mull, it was 3.30pm, nearer 5pm, by the time we were paddling. We had decided to camp out, but I wasn't 100%, don't know about Alan and Matt, but thought well, it's now or never. The weather was just the best, I have never been as hot in Scotland, and a Guy from Edinburgh Uni. told us it was SNOWING only 3 weeks previous. A big thanks to him, by the way, forget his name, but he gave us some great, friendly advice. Parking is a big problem at Ulva, and we took advice off 2 lots of locals, parked up, and promptly got told to move!! There is a phone no. but you try getting a phone signal here? Anyway, off we go, into Loch na Keal, and up the West side of Ulva. If that was all we had done that day, that would have been a sensational trip, but we did all that AND Staffa. All along Ulva it was amazing, crystal clear water,fantastic Basalt columns of rock lining the shore, views out to all the Islands, the Ross of Mull. the rolling grandeur of Ulva itself, and Cuckoos calling, and Golden Eagles in the distance. The conditions were such, that looking out to the Ross of Mull, had a dream like, surreal quality. We landed on the most amazing little beach, that was 'Coral sand' , I could have pitched the tent there and then, and been in paradise, but more was to come. Leaving that beach, we rounded Little Colonsay, and Staffa, finally came into full view. The views out here were something to behold, to the South, the dreamy Ross of Mull, ahead Staffa, Dutchman's Cap, and numerous unknown skerries, and to the North, Lunga, the Treshnish Islands, peninsula, and beyond that, Rum, and Canna, with Coll,and Tiree, hoving into view as we approached Staffa. Just absolutely amazing. As we approached Staffa, the bird life increased, Puffins, aplenty, Black Gullimots, Fulmars, and Manx Shearwaters, coming past very close at times. Staffa was in sillouhette, when we arrived, and turning the south corner, into the light, and unexpectedly stumbling upon Fingal's Cave, was one of the best experiences, I've ever had in a Kayak. I thought is was located in the middle of the Island. There is little I can add to the legend of Fingal's cave, that hasn't already been said/done, except to add, that it was OUT OF THIS WORLD, that's all. The basalt columns, the crystal clear water, the atmosphere. There are 2 other caves as well, that are almost as good, but smaller, the roof contstruction of particular note, in the first two. By now, time was marching on, and we needed find somewhere suitable to pitch 2 tents. Whilst Matt, and Alan, where looking, I went out alone to see, if there was anywhere else futher on. It was amazing out there alone on the Sea of the Hebrides, in that sunset. We finally pitched the tents, ate, drank and was merry, Matt's first job was make a fire, still thinks he's in the Scouts that one, ha ha. We had a walk up the top of the Island, to watch the last of the sunset, and it was the most eerie experience. The calls from the Manx Shearwaters, have to be heard to be believed, and they seem to be able to 'throw their voice' the calls seem to surround, and envelop you.We didn't get much sleep, we were like kids on Christmas Eve, and Matt was up at dawn, and circumnavigated the Island, check out his video. Alan has some good stuff as well. The music was all done by myself, and if this trip doesn't inspire you to do some good music, what would?

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