Kayaking challenge

A WOMAN who is attempting to circumnavigate Ireland by kayak crossed Carlingford Lough to Templetown and travelled down the Louth coast to Blackrock and Clogherhead last week.

A WOMAN who is attempting to circumnavigate Ireland by kayak crossed Carlingford Lough to Templetown and travelled down the Louth coast to Blackrock and Clogherhead last week.

Elaine ‘Shooter’ Alexander departed from Whitehead Yacht Club on the Co Antrim coast two weeks ago and in the first five days covered 150 miles despite the growing sea swell.

She had to paddle through head on winds of up to 30 miles per hour and was storm bound for two days at Cranfield Point before she took on Carlingford Lough and the Louth coast on Tuesday, May 10.

“It is important to make progress in the first few days of any expedition to keep the motivation levels up and although I have been forced to dig deep over the first few days, I have now had two days much needed rest,” said Elaine.

“I think the winds are likely to stay the same for the foreseeable future, so I will stock up on energy drinks and make sure I eat my Weetabix. It all seems to be uphill at the moment but I am confident that I can continue.

“Tidal waters rush through the mouth of Carlingford Lough at up to 5 knots with races, overfalls and rough water extending out beyond Cranfield and Ballagan Points on both the flood and ebb tides. This is a challenging stretch of water suitable for experienced canoeists only and in a wind against tide situation it kicks up a huge sea.”

Elaine’s challenge will involve a solo voyage of 1,000 miles battling tides, headlands, cliffs, not to mention unpredictable weather before returning to Whitehead in approximately two months time.

Elaine is also raising funds for the charity ‘SHARE’, which provides outdoor activity programmes which promote the inclusion of disabled and non-disabled people in a wide range of arts, land and water based recreational programmes.

She will keep in touch through regular posts, updates and uploads on social networking sites Facebook, Twitter and Youtube and is fundraising through ‘Just Giving’.

All links to her posts and blogs are available from her website www.canoearoundireland.com.