IOPCC Trip Report

Sandbanks to Old Harry Rocks
January 23rd 2011

Fretting and stressing over, I mean careful pre-trip preparation I meet up with 8 other experienced paddlers, was running a bit behind schedule but made the briefing at 9:45. I felt a bit prepared been working out last few days, not down my local gym Iím talking about wrestling with an ancient rotavator up on my plot. Hugh was certainly the man with the (extremely detailed) laminated plan. Expertly organised with back up plans (laminated of course) and showing toilets, just in case the weather was too much for Old Harry Rocks.

All nine on the water by just after 10:00. I decided it would be a good idea to paddle through the initial surf with my mouth wide open for a good taste of the January seawater, Wakey, wakey ! There was a slight breeze blowing over my left shoulder, Iíd say f3 - 4 gusts. Unfamiliar waters for me so the random lumps of water picked up by tidal current and varying depth of sea bed kept it interesting. We chatted and Old Harry got bigger. It was a nice day, a bit cold but the sun was out. Three new faces for me was nice to meet. Well I crossed paths with Mike once when IOPCC and PHCC converged about a mile out to sea, and had spotted Danís kayak (mmm nice boat!) driving through Dorchester.

Six rugged, hardy kayaking rascals rounded the ragged Old Harry Rocks. Three went ahead for lunch at nearby beach, Mr Christmas had a touch of loose footrestitis. The beach had a hut selling hot drinks, Ian and Barbara enjoyed mugs of hot chocolate. I flasked my coffee and peeled out my mackerel (in mustard sauce) and worked between a couple of crusty rolls. Personally always seem to feel the nip when I stop, just time to admire Cliveís gloves, think he is going to start a trend!

The wind had stiffened a bit for the journey home and in the distance I could see some occasional largish cresting waves. The tide was starting to flow out of Poole Harbour. Around this point I was finding myself pulling a little bit in front, did keep regularly checking behind. Trouble is I find myself going into a bit of a zone, there was wind tide and boats coming out of Poole harbour nothing to phase any of us I believe. Thinking now casserole I prepared before should be turned on now hopefully, tops of my forearms are starting to tighten a little, think that rotavating must be catching up with me.

All landed smoothly, and enjoyed cold chat and Barbaraís hot chocolate. Also I now know what snafu means. Great trip Hugh. Cheers to all who came and shared a smile on a winterís day. Hope you enjoyed my version of a trip report.

Paul and Dan heading out from Sandbanks Winter sunshine
New member
Mike Holgate
Old Harry Rocks Jon
A rare picture of Barbara Barbara, Mike and Hugh
On the beach at Joe's Cafe

Pictures of the paddle are on the
Galleries Page.


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Report: Jon Massey
Pictures: Barbara Browning



Paddling on the Jurassic Coast