A 300-mile paddle along the length of the Cornish coast.
As the first touches of summer reached the Cornish coast author, photographer and Drift’s Features Editor Matthew Button slipped quietly away on an outgoing tide, to paddle his SUP out of Plymouth with the intention of navigating the length of the Cornish coast.
Bude is something like 300 miles away on the other side of the county via the viper’s teeth of the Lizard and Land’s End. Between the first stroke and the last lies a coast that has wrecked armadas, destroyed lives and created myths and legends, and through these wild seas threads a single soul on a stand up paddle board.
Driven by a passion for the hidden places Matt set out on an audacious exploration of the limits of the unprepared and overly ambitious. He will paddle and wild camp his way along the coast, trawling for mackerel, gliding with the seabirds and cetaceans, and sleeping under the stars in hidden coves.
Yet the British weather will undoubtedly make a mockery of such romance; the Atlantic is as likely to tear the seas apart as to offer perfect glass. Exhaustion and the unrelenting wind and sun, along with shipping tankers, dangerous currents and summer storms threaten brutality as much as beauty.
Can it be done? Of course! Can it be done by Matt? That’s whole different manner. He didn’t even own a SUP when he came up with the idea although he had an old sleeping bag and some tangled fishing line and feathers.
Thankfully the folks at Red Paddle stepped in with a board and Cornish cold-water surf company Finisterre and Hawaiian paddle company Kenalu believed enough in the harebrain scheme to help out with equipment.
The journey is a chance to quell the voices and free the mind from the madness of modernity. There is a chance to surf, dive, fish and sail but above all he hopes for the solace to be found in the silence, solitude and simple rhythms of the ocean in this deeply personal and emotional reconnection with the waters around his home as he threads a line between the tides.