Bass Rock

Bass Rock First SUP Ever

Solo Circumnavigation Of ‘Bass Rock’

Bass Rock lies about 2km off the coast just on the outside of the Firth Of Fourth in the cold North Sea.

It has a huge presents in the area and can be seen from all around. It is also the home to one of the largest if not the largest populations of Gannets in the world and turns into a chalky white colour in the summer.

It has always been on my list of places to paddle to for about twelve years since I first saw it when I moved to Edinburgh in 1999.

On the weekend of July 16th 2011 the I had the chance to paddle there for the first time and it was a chance that I was NOT going to miss! 😎

Here is the story of my adventure, which I believe is a first on a Stand Up Paddleboard ❓ ❓ ❓

I set off from this amazingly low key bay not far from North Berwick…

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The conditions looked just right, although under a low pressure with most of the rest of the UK getting gale force winds, East Lothian was right in the middle of the low! In the eye of the storm, as it were πŸ˜€

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I used the latest offering from Starboard, the Coast Runner 14’x28″. One of only 4 in the UK! This is probably the best and only board available for such a sea crossing!

I set off with a slight feeling of anxiety knowing that the slight breeze was off shore and against a pushing spring tide that I would have to paddle against!

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This was the first pic I took during the crossing about one third of the way across.

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Looking back at the start point, Canty Bay. It was about this time that I starded to feel VERY exposed!! 😯

I just paddled hard and kept my head down, watching the Bass getting bigger and bigger……

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I started to get a feeling of safety as the SMELL OF AMONIA hit me like a wall, I knew I’d soon be half way through my mini expedition!

THE BASS……….. πŸ™‚

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North Berwick Law now looking tiny over the shoulder!

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As well as the smell of guano there was the deafening noise of about a 100 thousand Gannets, which actually sounded like crashing waves from a distance!

[img]http://i865.photobucket.com/albums/ab215/wavecloud/Bass%20Rock%2016%20july%202011/DSC00355.jpg[/img]

I slowly paddled round the Rock! The swell getting more and more confused and choppy as I got to the exposed side!

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Tantallon Castle

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I have heard that the cave on the left can be paddled all the way through the rock at high tide 😯

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The remains of the Castle that once stood on Bass Rock…

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This pic gives a good idea of swell height. I’d say that it was between waiste and chest high! Enoughto occasionaly block out the horizon!!

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The tourist boat from North Berwick! They looked slightly bothered that I was there πŸ˜•

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There wasn’t really anywhere safe to land, so I tied off onto this bouy for a break!

[img]http://i865.photobucket.com/albums/ab215/wavecloud/Bass%20Rock%2016%20july%202011/DSC00381.jpg[/img]

After my rest, I started the paddle back! This time the tide was in my favour and the wind had started to push me also. It had done 180 degree swing πŸ˜€

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With the wind and tide pushing me, it only took about 20 mins to get back!

[img]http://i865.photobucket.com/albums/ab215/wavecloud/Bass%20Rock%2016%20july%202011/DSC00397.jpg[/img]

I was feeling very satisfied that I had completed what could have been an unpaddle-able trip πŸ˜† πŸ˜†

[img]http://i865.photobucket.com/albums/ab215/wavecloud/Bass%20Rock%2016%20july%202011/DSC00402.jpg[/img]

I must say a BIG thankyou to Nick from – http://www.thesupstore.co.uk/

Without his help noe of my SUP trips would be possible! Cheers Nick, you really are the BEST retailer I have EVER done business with πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

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