Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Limping Inn to Glenuig, a pub too far!

Heading north past the Smirisary coast, Donald was well ahead as he tracked a shoal of fish with his fish finder.

I kept close inshore and as we turned into  the Sound of Arisaig I caught him up. His main engine had stopped while idling during his fishing and would not restart. I checked he could get his auxilliary going and left him to cleaning his spark plug.

We arranged to meet at Glenuig and I set off towards...

...the twin summits of Rois-Bheinn and An Stac, which rose majestically into the low cloud.

 Once I had passed Samalan Island, the sheltered sandy cove behind it looked very inviting...

 ...but I continued on to Glenuig Bay...

 ...where the excellent Glenuig Inn can be found! The Inn has a reputation for being sea kayak friendly.

At this point, I would normally sacrifice a significant amount of my personal time to provide you, the reader, with another in depth  sea kayaking pubs review. I was really looking forward to this one, as the Glenuig Inn serves real ales. However, there was a problem. It was low tide and the Inn was nearly 400m away. I had been paddling for six and a half hours and was desperately drouthy but sadly the Glenuig Inn was just a pub too far. To be dying of thirst within sight of a pub is about as much as any sea kayaker can bear.

Unfortunately it was not just thirst that was bothering me. The pain in my bad knee was now too bad to contemplate the direct route over the sand and seaweed covered rocks or even the longer, easier route by the jetty and the road. I also had the bad cut in my toe to contend with. It was still bleeding and by the time I had cleaned and redressed it, I was too done to go walking. Just limping a few yards to get a photo was as much as I could manage. All I can do, to assuage the disappointment the reader may feel about the lack of a sea kayaking pubs review, is to promise to visit again soon, preferably at high tide!

I had just got myself ready for sea again when Donald limped in to the bay under his auxiliary power...

PS Most sea kayaking visitors, with even moderate mobility, will find that the Glenuig Inn is very conveniently situated.


  1. Strewth Douglas, I hadn't realized your knee was still giving you so much bother. It must have been bad for a thirsty kayaker not to get to the pub! Keep on sea kayaking, lots of us would miss your adventures!


  2. Hi Douglas

    I'll second that. Your knee saga is beginning to bother me somewhat. Can't advanced surgery do anything to alleviate it? Missing out on a good pub is the last straw.

    Does the knee/brace position aggravate the issue? Maybe a spell on a 'sit-on-top', with its freer, more relaxed sitting position might give it some rest-bite?

    Do they sell Kaskasi Skua ARX, for example, up your way? http://www.kayakuk.com/shop/shop.php?action=full&id=16 (I've no connection with them by the way). I often use use my Prowler.....gets me all over the place.

    Anyway, I hope things improve. Otherwise, the only activity you'll have left is Olympic 'getting waited on in bed with cups of tea and 18 yr old malts etc'.

    Who's going to photograph the scenery then?

  3. Thank you Rob and CB. My knee has been getting bad. I had to pull out of a couple of trips recently. Also last Sunday I had to turn back after just a few km because the pain was so bad.

    As far as photos go, I have literally thousands that I haven't posted. A lot of trips that I am currently posting like the Islay trip actually took place several years ago. I should be able to keep posting for several years yet but I am worried about my future sea kayaking. I have already had a fantastic (but end of the line) series of knee operations which have successfully rebuilt my knee but have not helped the pain. I do have a sit on top but apart from not having to get into the cockpit, I have not found it any easier.

  4. Incredibly sad if that's the end of your kayaking days.

    Anyway, here's looking forward to more 'blog' accompanied riches from the treasure trove. (It's nicely midge free on the computer screen).

    All the best with it.

  5. Thank you CB. One of the problems recently was that I have been very immobile at work, it was the oral examination season and conference season. My knee just locked up. It's getting a bit better now that I have the time to do my knee physio and swimming again. Fingers crossed! I have already given up climbing, hillwalking, mountain biking, road cycling and windsurfing. I would hate to loose sea kayaking too.

  6. I too am finding it a sad time, after hearing so many stories about your belting Kayaking pix Douglas from all and sundry and just now delighting in seeing them, plus me just celebrating my first year as a sea Kayakist/ er.. and was looking for tips on camera cases etc.. but I see you have product reviews and tests, so I'll have a swaatch at them for hints.. I have a Canon 1D with a 70-200 2.8L but mostly use my Canon Powershot D10 underwater/ waterproof digi after having hassle with an old Sony Digi camera inside an Aquapac case.. pain in the neck findling with buttons even trying so see the images through a salt encrusted case.. anyway, sorry to hear of your lack of pub access ailments and all the best for your future (and mine in my Capella 161)
    Graham Milne

  7. Graham, thank you for your good wishes.

    The good news is that I am not off the water yet. I have recently managed a few short morning or afternoon paddles. I have also borrowed a P&H Delphin as it has a much longer cockpit and is easier to get in and out of, if you have a bad knee like me.

    I like the sound of your DSLR and lens! Why not use your just use Powershot from a waterproof Ortlieb Aquazoom deck bag like I do?