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Just as we've got some fitness in our legs from our hiking we decide to assault our upper bodies with a kayak.

This overnight kayak involved paddling 18km from Corinna, "down" (an important point to note) the Pieman River to Pieman Heads on the west coast of Tasmania.

Having camped on the Savage River the night before, we arrive in the historic settlement of Corinna and the famous Fatman Ferry at around 9.30am. (another point to note: we want to be on the water at 10am) Here in the carpark, we begin to organise our gear. This is where a comedy of errors begins.  We have our gear spread all over the carpark. Kayak is attached to the wheels for ease of transporting to the river. As we are stuffing our gear into the kayak (pushing and shoving and grunting) the wheels break! Ok so remove them and we just have to carry the 50kg+ kayak. Its only 100m to the river. Everything packed and ready to go - so where did our fishing permits end up? They were with our gear - S**t. Unpack the kayak, still cannot find them. Repack the kayak and take the purchase receipt with us. People watching us must think we are complete idiots!

Finally, we get on the water at just before 11am (1 hr later than planned) and see the Fatman Ferry crossing the river nearby.


We put our fishing rods out and decide to trawl along slowly to see if we can catch dinner.

The water is calm and we are treated to magnificent reflections of the surrounding hills & clouds mirrored in the water. Even the reeds along the edge of the river look magical reflected in the water.





Not far along we paddle into the mouth of the Savage River to see the shipwreck of SS Croydon. Not too much remains.


A little further and we come across Lover's Corner and a short walk up to Lover's Falls. As we had such a late start we decided to have lunch where the creek drops into the Pieman River.


Alex decides no coffee for lunch - he is cutting down.

According to the kayak times (from Kayak hire) Alex thinks we must be nearly half way to Pieman Heads. I'm not so sure about that!

Onwards we slowly paddle still trying to catch a fish and admiring the reflections in the still waters.



The River Cruise boat passes us, fishing boats and 4 jetskiers shattering the tranquility of the river.



A 2pm Alex decides he NEEDS a coffee NOW. We pull in through the reeds to a grassy bank only to find the grass is just covering swampy mud but we stop anyway. Surely it cannot be far to go to the heads - but on checking the GPS we find we are only half way!

Coffee had and re-energised we set off, rounding the corner into a massive head wind and waves on the river! Putting our back into kayaking we arrive at Pieman Heads at 4pm. Just past the small fishing village, we beach in a nice sheltered bay. We drag the kayak just out of the water and go for a walk to look for a place to camp. (Looks like the tide is going out so the kayak will be fine at the water's edge).


We found a campsite around the corner, with toilet, behind the dunes. But we decided on a more scenic spot overlooking the bay and out to sea. Well, that corner we had walked around nearly became a huge problem. On coming back into the bay we notice our kayak is no longer at the water's edge and is very quickly moving out into the bay! Alex runs his fastest 100m ever across the sand and into the water. He reached the kayak just as it had reached the drop off into deeper water. Chest deep water was better than swimming after our kayak.


Kayak rescued we began unloading and carrying all our gear and kayak up the beach and over the huge logs protecting the sands of the bay up to camp. Hopefully we are above high-tide!



After setting up Alex tried some fishing, still no luck, and I had a quick swim in the icy cold water. With seagulls for company, we had dinner watching the sun go down.




The next morning the seagulls were back joining us for breakfast. (Maybe something to do with giving them left overs last night)



We then began the long process of packing and carting all our gear back down to the beach and of course the tide is going out so we have further to walk.

More beautiful reflections on the water today.




But with an outgoing tide, we were moving slower against its pull. The River Cruise once again passed us, but being Monday there were less boats and we had a very peaceful paddle. The only issue was we were moving along very slowly. The tide and the fact we were going upstream (always harder) was affecting us greatly and then the wind picked up and of course, it was a head wind. We were only paddling along at 4km per hour. Just before lunch, the river narrowed and we couldn't believe the speed of the water flow - against us! Watching our progress against the river bank we were almost standing still. It took us 30min to paddle 500m.

We lunched on a rock overlooking the river and dreading the last 7km against this fast flow.


Fortunately, as we paddled around the next bend the river widened and the wind dropped making paddling much easier. We again enjoyed the peaceful paddle back to Corinna.

We took a quick look around this historic town to complete a wonderful 2 days.



A few points to remember next time for us novice kayakers:
* Check tides,
* Paddling upstream is much harder and slower, and
* NEVER EVER leave kayak unattended/unsecured on water's edge!









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