The annual Swan Canoe Club, Broke Inlet trip took place over the Australia Day weekend, with about thirty members camping out over the three days.
After loading kayaks and a briefing, the group divided into four, under Colin Priest, Gisela Cannon, Ian Garthwaite and Geoff Emery.
The wind was blowing strongly and the water was quite shallow, so that a tack out into deeper water was required. Then it was just a matter of surfing wildly down the wind to No-Name Point. GeoffÕs group arrived first and grabbed the best campsites and the others arrived later. The campsite was in white sand looking back across the inlet, about half way between the ocean and the Shannon River.
On Saturday morning Colin and Geoff led a group on an eighteen kilometre return paddle to where the Shannon River divided. Another group under Gisela and Ian headed for the ocean. Again the shallow water required some effort and careful navigation. The Shannon River group had a pleasant morning tea near the Shannon bifurcation, before heading back to Shannon Island for lunch.
Gina Rogers was kind enough to let Colin paddle ÒPreciousÓ her Mirage 530. (ÒDid you know it was designed by a naval architect?Ó) After lunch a few hardy souls did the alternate trip to the morning one. Well done Phil, Brad, Lee, Gisela, Mary and Jen.
The rest of us sat about enjoying a pleasant twenty-five degree day with Fiona offering free foot massages.
Later on Saturday night we saw the comet to the south with a huge tail halfway up the sky. Ian, Gisela and Mary enjoyed pointing out the better known stars among the multitude above us. Sunday dawned with a beautiful sunrise and the water was relatively calm without much wind. Unfortunately rather than enjoy it to the full, we were breaking camp and heading back to the other side of the inlet, where we had left our cars.
Overall a good time was had by all. The highlights were probably seeing the comet in all its glory and having the only folding chair in camp. Thanks to everyone, especially Colin Priest for making it such a success. Hope you can all make it next year.
Geoff Emery. President, Swan Canoe Club.