Sunday, 10 October 2010

Tanera Beg and the cave

The next feature that I had hoped to see was Cathedral Cave on the south west side of the island. The choppy swell on the exposed south put me off a circular tour to reach the cave so I tried backtracking and then going through the channel in the shelter of the north side of the island. A lovely yacht had moored there over night. Im certain it could make Priest Island and beyond with no problems at all.

Rounding the north west corner of Tanera Beg, my little inflatable started to bob on the waves again.

I headed towards the south of the island in the relative shelter of the cliffs until I reached the rocky point in this photo. Unfortunately, as soon as I rounded the point the choppy swell really made my head spin so I spun the boat around and decided Cathedral cave could wait for another day.

Perhaps I could have made the cave without any problems but I preferred to respect my ability and I know my experience of the boat is still very much in a learning curve. Since my Gigha trip, I now carried a couple of distress flares but had no intentions of finding out if anyone would see them and rescue me if I swamped the little craft. me a coward if you must :-D

As soon as the boat started to surf with the waves behind me again, I started to relax and enjoy the experience. I love the feel of the boat being pickup up by a wave and carried forward at speed until the boat starts to loose momentum as it slides down the back of the wave, only to catch a ride on the next wave. I kept a sharp eye open for rocks just below the surface as it could be a major disaster to have the inflatable dropped onto one as it slips into the trough between waves.

Soon I was back in the calm waters in the shelter of the Summer Isles. Looking back at the towering cliffs on the west of Tarera Beg , I was glad I didn’t have to try a crash landing on the west of the island

I put out my trolling line again and almost immediately caught a large Pollack about the three pound mark. I would have gladly swapped it for a much smaller mackerel so I returned it to the sea to swim another day.

Looking over to the mainland, I was surprised to see an unrecognisable mountain? Until I realised it was actually two mountains. Stac Polly with Cul Mor directly behind it, I had not seen that sea perspective of my favourite mountain before.

I was now slowly cruising around the rocky reefs between Tanera Mor and Tanera Beg. Things were beginning to look a bit brighter as the sun started to break through the haze. The cormorants all stood to attention like a line little soldiers as I sailed on past.

Then, for some unknown reason I felt as if a hundred eyes were watching me.....

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