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Hi folks,

Hope everyone has had a fab Christmas and is looking forward to the new year!

If you are struggling for things to do once the festive season is over, you could always pop down to The Harbour Club, Portscatho on Tuesday, 15th January at 8pm.  Geoff and I will take you on a little journey around Great Britain, share some of our experiences, stunning scenery, incredible wildlife and some of the inspirational people we met along the way.

We have some photos, some videos and plenty of tall stories to tell (getting taller as the weeks go by!)

Entrance is free, but we’d welcome donations to charity.

Hope to see you there!

Geoff and Andy

Home Coming

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A little video to say thank you to all those special people who made our little trip possible, who wished us well, who inspired us along the way and of course, who made such generous donations to our charities.

There are so many people to thank and sorry if we have missed anyone!

The fabulous total raised now stands at £11,800 (including Gift Aid this should climb to over £14,000).

Cheers

Andy and Geoff

http://youtu.be/MC4-dz4-QWk

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Our apologies for the poor quality of this video and we promise to get better ones up in future!!

You may get neck ache watching these….

Part 1:

Part 2:

 

 

 

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We were up at 4.30am yesterday after an ok night’s sleep on the harbour wall in beautiful Clovelly.  We had a little cover under a walk way but Geoff, who was in his bivvy bag, can confirm that it rained during the night and that the rain was wet on his face.

We paddled 11 miles across Bideford Bay trying to find the figure of 8 stream that a local fisherman had told us about.  He suggested we aimed for the 5 star hotel at Saunton Sands – slightly ironic given our accommodation arrangements.  About 5 miles across the mist came down and we lost sight of land.  We took a bearing and tried to keep the kayaks on a heading of 45 degrees.  Around an hour later and to our delight (and a little surprise) the cloud lifted and hotel was still there – we were on course.

We pulled into Croyde Bay at high tide and thankfully very small surf.  By 10am were in a local holiday park cafe eating an enormous breakfast while we waited for the tide to go out and turn back in our favour.  We wanted to avoid the peak of the tide race around Ilfracombe but still get the benefit of some tidal stream as we completed the last 11 miles.  The downside of this master plan was that it took us 25 minutes to carry the kayaks (each around 100kgs) down to the water.  Mmmm – still figuring out the most efficient strategies.  The split shift (paddle twice a day with the tides) seems to work though  – and suspect we’ll take advantage of this more in the weeks ahead.

We’re now under a roof in the Oceanbackpackers hostel in Ilfracombe and weather bound for a couple of days as we wait for the Bristol Channel crossing – 22 miles to Port Eynon.  We would normally be out in a F5 head wind but not when crossing the Channel.  Best to be safe and we prefer to be conservative with some of our decisions, even if that means adding a few days to our expedition.

So time to eat, wash, dry kit out, let blisters dry out and inspect sore bits and make some funny videos – really sorry we haven’t been able to post any of therm yet we’ve had a few techy problems. But hopefully we’ll get this sorted soon.

We are loving the messages of support – thank you so much!  We are all a little tired and aching but in high spirits and growing more confident by the day that we can do this.

Anyway better go we’ve got a brew on…..

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So, only two days to go … and I cannot wait!  Probably not the reaction you’d expect from a loving and supportive wife, but this might help clarify things:

  • the guest room will revert back to being to a guest room and will no longer be a kit and exercise room
  • no more packages to sign for – the constant doorbell-ringing also makes George bark, incessantly
  • no more hearing him whinge about niggles, old and new
  • no more wondering what all the grunting and groaning is coming from the garden and the shed – fortunately its just him huffing and puffing while exercising
  • no more ‘would you help me carry the kayak through the cottage’ – bearing in mind the kayak is almost 18ft long, always drips water and sand, and is not the most manoeuvrable of things
  • I will become top dog

I could carry on, but I won’t.  It is all of these things (and more) which, actually, will make me miss him so much.  Even writing this makes me tearful (get a grip TB), but I am so proud of Andy.  This trip has been months in the planning, and he has been training religiously to make himself as strong and as fit as he can be.  It is important for him that his body doesn’t let him down, and he also won’t want to let Geoff and Mike down – and not to mention everyone who is supporting them and of course the charities they are hoping to raise lots of £’s for.  I’m not too worried about the actual paddling, it’s the other stuff that wakes me up at night, like, will he get a good night’s sleep;  will he stay injury-free;  will the weather be kind to them;  and I hope no-one steals the kayak!

I cannot wait for the day I see him appear from around Nare Head – I’ll be the one on Tatums Beach in floods of tears and popping open the champagne.  I’m sure this trip will be a life-changing experience, I’m just hoping it doesn’t make him want to do it again – his Mum won’t be happy!  But then again, at least I’ll know what to expect.

Good luck honey.  Be safe, be strong, but most of all, have fun.  Love you, xxx

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A big thank you to MooD International who have just made a very generous donation to our charities.  MooD International are Mike Greenslade’s employer and have already donated in a sense by allowing Mike to have the time away from work to take part in this expedition.  The GB360 Team are all very grateful for this latest contribution to our sponsorship.

Image

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Well, a year in the planning so what’s an extra couple of days?  Sadly the forecast for Sunday is looking pretty awful – Force 7 (gusting gale Force 8), so we’ve made the call to delay setting off till Tuesday 1st May.  Really sorry if you had hoped to join us down on Tatums Beach to say cheerio on Sunday but we hope you can still pop down on Tuesday.  We’ll be there from 11.15 am and will be heading off around midday.

Andy, Geoff, Mike

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