The South Ayrshire Coast: 13th September 2019

Objective: The object of the website is threefold, to keep a record of club activities, to encourage those who might be thinking of taking up the sport with the club and, finally to provide information about where to go, where to park and what to expect. The Search system on the website, for example can be used to call up any trips by club members to Ailsa Craig. This Blog report is on a trip by the “Mid Week Sea Kayakers WhatsApp Group ” not the Club , but it is believed this report will more than fulfill the other two objectives of the website.

Report: The coast between Ayr and Turnberry is a spectacular mix of exposed rocky cliff and long broad sandy beaches. In addition there are two lovely villages at Dunure and Maidens, a spectacular ruined castle at Dunure and the huge majestic Culzean Castle (NTS). There are established car parks at Ayr, Croy and Turnberry. Because of the time taken to get to the start (nearly two hours) a weekend trip along the length, with a car shuttle, is an attractive proposition.

We put in at Croy where there is an excellent car park and toilets. The sea goes out a long way and a trolley is suggested. The concrete slip onto the beach has a scaffolding type barrier but the boats on the trolleys will just go under the one on the extreme right (looking at the sea).

The beach is an excellent surf beach; good enough to spend a day practicing here. The weather was an F2/3 breeze from the South West and the cloud was due to disappear as the wind got up to F4/5 in the late afternoon. The forecast was wrong; the cloud coverage increased and the wind got up quickly so that there was a strong F4 by midday.

The Beach 2 hours off high water

We paddled south towards the castle that dominates the cliffs at the far end of the beach

Passing one of the self catering cottages on the NTS Culzean estate
Heading for Culzean

The “Gas House” (far left) and Culzean

The shore/shallows are very shallow here making for an enjoyable section of rock hopping. The cliffs have a number of caves accessible along the shore at low tide. The first (most northerly) was apparently used for smuggling whist the second has been “improved to form a 3 floor apartment with tunnel to the main castle.

We pushed on south in increasing wind until white horses were occurring with some frequency. Just before Barwhin Point a decision was made to turn north again back to our starting point with the possibility of then heading further north to Dunure. The resultant trip was a very useful “skills” practice.

When we reached our initial departure point, enthusiasm for continuing was absent and so the final task was to get ashore without capsize. This correspondent would like to report an absolutely perfect straight, fast run-in on possibly the biggest wave of the day. Chuffedness knows no bounds.

A line of breaking waves are to be seen a long way out.
A lovely sea for kayak surfing

A very short yet highly satisfying day. This coast is really worth paddling but possibly a 2 day trip as it is a long way to go in some horrible traffic.