It was a lovely morning in our bay, the sun was shining, the tide was out and the waves were looking a little smaller. We had a hot breakfast as it was a much cooler morning than we’ve been having. A sure sign that is now autumn not summer. The waves were small but breaking quite far off the shore, this meant I was going to have a wet start. I launched Ngaio through the whitewash and she paddled out past the breaking waves. I got my timing slightly wrong and got a face full of water before I paddled out to meet Ngaio. The swell along the coast was still huge, big sets thundering in to shore.
We stayed way out the back where the big swell rolled in, even all the way out it was still intimidating. Ngaio described some of the waves as “almost overhanging!” We managed to find a gap between the point and a reef where the swell wasn’t breaking, we carefully paddled here, gliding in on the big rolling swell. As we got closer to the point we could hear all sorts of strange noises, sea lions, and heaps of them! There was a huge colony of sea lions on the point, basking in the sun, jumping in to the water, fighting with each other, Mating, and surfing in the swell. It was so awesome to see! Lots of them were ‘barking’ and making so much noise. I couldn’t say how many but in the hundreds for sure. There was a smaller rock around the point covered in them as well, it was more sheltered here so we stopped for a break and to take some photos. As soon as we stopped all the curious ones were straight into the water to investigate us. Many of them followed us all the way up the coast to the light house, they are wonderful curious creatures.
It felt so good to paddle around the point, it meant we were now in more sheltered waters. We made the most of this opportunity by pulling out the plastic tarp , tying it to our paddles and making a sail! Haha! We ‘sailed’ for about 4km, Ngaio pulled out the bad pirate voice and I was definitely the captain. Our sail didn’t last so we had to go back to paddling. We were headed to hot springs cove, you could not believe how excited we were for this. Natural hot springs right on the oceans edge.
We were pushing to get there when Ngaio yelled out something. She had just seen a huge humpback breaching out at sea! I immediately looked where she was pointing, then started to tease her about how she didn’t even see anything, when a second, huge humpback breached from the ocean, twisting in the air and landing with an almighty splash. We both started cheering and yelling, it was magical. Around the corner was hot springs cove, we paddled to a camp site, set up our tent and headed to the hot springs. When we arrived we couldn’t quite believe our eyes. There was a big waterfall of hot water then big pools in the rocks leading to the ocean. The water was so hot and felt so amazing on our sore used muscles. The pools were deep and the rocks were smooth and comfortable. Because it was in the evening there was only us and a two locals there. An absolute blissful way to end an awesome day.
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(first image and blog via satellite phone)