The ANZACS have landed!
Alan and I touched the sandy beach at Boulogne Harbour this evening at 5:30pm, almost exactly six hours after leaving Dungeness beach in England at 11:30 am.
We paddled for 3.5 hours to the centre of the channel and through the english shipping lanes, then much to our dissapointment had to exit the kayaks and enter the support boat and cross the french shipping lanes under motor. This is due to some ridiculous French laws which prohibit kayakers passing through their shipping lanes. Some of you may know that I have spent months trying to get permission to paddle the channel, but due to the French changing the laws last year it now appears impossible currently to paddle all the way across. I also wrote to the French coast guard personally who denied me access to paddle across their shipping lanes.
We re-entered the kayaks 7nm from Boulogne and paddled into the harbour, covering a total distance of 19nm which is the typical distance of a cross channel swim between the shortest points. However our aim to do the trip completely by human power has been dashed which is disappointing. What is even more frustrating is that their were not many vessels in the shipping lanes. I counted only 3 as we passed through the French side, I regularly paddle through much busier waters every weekend in Singapore, and secondly, a swimmer was swimming the whole channel today. Thats right, you can still swim the channel but you can’t kayak it.
Anyway, we have arrived, are safe and happy, our support boat Will and Hank from Full Throttle did a great job, and we are looking forward to onwards tomorrow on the bikes.
Thanks for your nice messages of support people!
Axe and Al arriving safe and sound in Boulogne