Friday, January 20, 2012

Sea kayaking across the Sound of Bute from Portencross to Brodick.

 A 30km day paddle from Portencross on the Ayrshire coast to Brodick in Arran with return by the ferry.

Paddling from Garroch Head on Bute across the Sound of Bute to Sannox on Arran.

Tides: On the ebb tide there is a tide race off the south end of Garroch Head. This can be rough if there is any south in the wind. The south going ebb starts about -0035 HW Greenock and the north going flood starts about -0035 LW Greenock but these times are very variable being influenced by how much rain and snow melt is entering the estuary. Sometimes there may be almost continuous ebb, especially east of Garroch head. Spring rates are 1 knot but are influenced by rain as above.

On the day, it was springs with LW Greenock at 0814 and HW at 1451. We left Portencross at 0920 arrived Port Leithne, Garroch Head at 1048, left Garroch Head at 1130 arrived Sannox Bay at 1330, left Sannox Bay at 1405 arrived Brodick at 1550. On the two hour crossing of the Sound of Bute (10.6km) we were carried downstream by about 2km.

The ferry arrives at Brodick at 1610 and departs at 1640.

We met before dawn.

The Pavlovian sound of splashing paddles.

First luncheon and a first paddle in the Cetus MV.

The finest scenic sea kayak crossing in Scotland?

Thank the Lord, for the Ortlieb Aqua Zoom bag!