Sunday, October 27, 2013

Coasteering in Guernsey

I had paddled along this section of coast, in south east Guernsey, numerous times over the years but this week I had the first opportunity to explore it at sea level and I wasn't disappointed.
I was in Guernsey for the Channel Islands meeting of the National Coasteering Charter and it would have been foolish to spend the whole day sitting talking about the activity, without any practical input.  Ant Ford Parker from Outdoor Guernsey collected myself and Penny from Pure Adventure from the airport, to take us the car park at Jerbourg.
We could see quite clearly from the flight over that there was a reasonable swell running and it was likely to create entertaining conditions as we headed west along our chosen route towards the Pea Stacks.  The quality of the coasteering along this section of coast was higher than we expected, as we spent just over 2 hours playing along a fascinating stretch of coast.

 The descent route from Jerbourg Point car park.  St Martin's Point lighthouse is just visible on the rocks.  Our route went off to the right.
 The was plenty of swimming in the relatively choppy waters.
 A few small jumps along the way maintained the interest.
 There were a number of narrow channels to swim through, although at times the swell would surge through the gaps.
Some of the gullies provided a degree of shelter which allowed relatively easy egress from the water.
At times leaving the water was a matter of timing.
 A times a larger swell could appear creating more challenging conditions.  The white helmet of the swimmer is just visible above the right hand side of the rock.
 The Pea Stacks marked the end of the journey.  They were painted by Renoir, during his short stay in Guernsey during the summer of 1883.
 Looking back along part of the route once we had regained the cliff path.  Sark is just visible in the distance, the location of great coasteering.

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