Packing up camp felt like it took forever this morning. Our little campsite was tiny so Ngaio and I spent most of our time looking around for bears and cougars. We got on the water around mid morning to ensure we were paddling on the out going tide. It was so much nicer paddling with the current, plus there was no head wind today and the sun was shining!
We made our way along the coast and toward the end of the channel. It felt awesome, we were covering heaps of ground (ocean), it was a beautiful day and Ngaio was having the best time spotting otters as we went. Every time she would see one she couldn’t help but start talking to it like it was our new pet, telling them how cute they are and that they “don’t have to worry about us, we are just passing through”. Otters are pretty darn cute and if it was up to Ngaio we would be introducing them to NZ waters haha.
The scenery began to change as we got closer to the northern tip. The bays were bigger and steeper, the coast was much more exposed and the body of water was moving differently. We got followed by a big sea lion for about an hour, he was very curious and very large. He cruised along keeping us paddling at a pretty decent speed.
We stopped to watch a black bear foraging on the beach. I watched as he put his paw on a rock the size of my torso and flicked it over with what looked like one claw. Suddenly the bears didn’t seem so cute and shy after seeing that...
We passed some truly beautiful beaches, long and pebbled in big bays of silky calm water. The trees grow all the way to the edge of the rocks, it’s so different to home.
In the late afternoon we paddled over the bar on the northern tip then carried on to our camp site. We were officially on the open ocean and you could tell! Even though it was a very calm day the familiar movement of the ocean was there, rather than the calm channel we had started in. We landed at a beautiful camp site on a big flat beach covered in drift wood, what more could we ask for?
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(main image and blog via satellite phone)