North West Point, Carcass Island

Lars Alfredson
Sun 4 Dec 2011 02:06
Pos 51:14.97S 60:36.41W

03122011 Kelp and Seals

It,s another beautiful sunny day with hardly any wind. Not wishing to waste the opportunity and in deference to pubic health we fire up the washing machine before motoring out the other end of the island where the Elephant Seals live.

It's a short sail and after an hour or so (Having hung out the washing) we spot the Seals on the other side of a great fringe of kelp that surrounds the sand and rock shore. Boarding the dinghy we work our way shoreward in the company of some very playful Dolphin that "Buzz" us inches from our bow. Easing our way between the great fingers that reach out from the shore in the rise and fall of a large swell, we look for a suitable landing site.

Finally we have to cut our way through and face the twin problems of a shoreline knee deep in a wallowing morass of the stuff and a shallowing rocky bottom that threatens to strand us well away from the shore. Eventually we find a likely spot right in front of a group of Seals, sunning themselves and looking like stranded whales.

Having landed, we now have to pull the dinghy over the rocks to get above the tide line under the watchful eyes of several great heaps of blubber that having given a warning snort, roll over and continue their sunning.

As we cross through the head high tussock grass to the other shore we find evidence of their travel over, leaving easy paths for us to follow. Then we find some buried between the tussocks sleeping in their shade. Further along we come across a pool, in a clearing in the Tussock grass where they are wallowing nicely in a bath of mud.

The bird life is up to its usual standard and I manage to photograph several small birds including a wren! that popped out of nowhere.

Back aboard after struggling to launch the dinghy, dry washing is taken in, a beer is issued and we set out to West Point Island under the Jib in a light wind. Great flocks of Rock Cormorants give a flypast and Dolphins give escort as we slowly sail along.

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