The Summer Isles, off the north-west coast of the Scottish Highlands, have long been on my list of places to visit. When we moved to the Black Isle, near Inverness, Hubby G and I promised ourselves sea kayaks and, brilliantly, our first outing in the new kayaks was to the Summer Isles.
With a good and calm forecast in late April and having read that there would not be too much of a tide, nor current, to bother us on our maiden voyage, G and I drove to Achiltibuie.
Tip: Pesda Press has a great collection of kayaking and canoeing books. We checked out Scottish Sea Kayaking.
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Short Summer Isles kayak trip
Since it would be our first sea kayak trip in our new boats – and because we had not kayaked for a few years, we chose a fairly short outing (around 10km) that would take in the main island of Tanera More.
Once there, we added in a couple more small isles.
The conditions were superb with a mostly flat sea and warm sunshine.
We enjoyed the relaxed pace and the peaceful environment. It was wonderful to see the land from the sea and to witness coastal wildlife up close. The bird life is fantastic.
The views of the Assynt mountains in the distance added to the rewards of kayaking in this part of Scotland.
We hope this will be the first of many outings – and a new hobby we can do together.
Sea kayaking kit list
This is what we have bought:
- 2022 P and H Scorpio Core Light Sea Kayak – I have Low Volume (LV), while G has the Medium Volume (MV)
- Carbon two-piece paddles (G has Werner, while I have Aqua Bound Whiskey Bent Shaft)
- Palm neoprene spraydeck
- Buoyancy aid
- PeakUK EVO kayak cag (cagoule) (for me)
- Kokatat Gore-Tex Drysuit (G bought his second hand)
- Bilge pump (for removing excess water)
- Paddle float (in case we need to self rescue)
- I also have neoprene Palm Descent pogies because I get cold hands.
- Roof rack and kayak carriers.