Imagine you are at the edge of the sea on a day when it is difficult to say where the land ends and the sea begins and where the sea ends and the sky begins. Sea kayaking lets you explore these and your own boundaries and broadens your horizons. Sea kayaking is the new mountaineering.
This is what we had come to see. HMS Ark Royal, the third in the Invincible class of light aircraft carriers.
She was launched in 1981 and commissioned in 1985. She weighs 22,000 tons and measures 210m by 36m.
She can carry up to 18 Harrier GR 6/7 aircraft. Her ramp is steeper (than that of her two earlier sister ships) to enhance the Harriers' take off performance. She is currently flagship of the Royal Navy fleet.
Here she is moored at Glenmallan pier in Loch Long to off load her armaments.
There is an exclusion zone that extends all round Glenmallan, almost to the far side of the loch! When munitions are being loaded or unloaded it is patrolled by a naval launch and so we made a point of sticking to the far shore. I wasn't sure if photography would be exactly welcomed and my white barrelled Canon L telephoto lens is not exactly inconspicuous. I tended to take photos when other boats were traversing the edge of the exclusion zone and distracting the patrol boat!