Sunday, January 13, 2008

Hilbre Island

A welcome window in the recent unsettled spell of weather prompted me to meet up with Barry and go for a paddle in what is effectively his back yard. Hilbre Island lies at the mouth of the Dee Estuary close to West Kirby. Hilbre seems to get invaded by anything, anyone in spite of tide and weather. Below half tide it is possible to get to Hilbre on foot. It is possible to get there by kayak only 2 hours either side of high water, and even then you need a spring tide for extra depth over the many sandbanks.

Hilbre and the other nearby low lying islets are nature reserves and important sites for wading birds and wildfowl. Barry and I were careful not to disturb the many wading birds that roost here when high water covers the mudflats and sandbanks upon which they feed.
The sea was flat pretty much flat throughout the day except at the end of the island where there are overfalls and some surprisingly choppy conditions.

We landed briefly on the island before setting off to return to West Kirby leaving plenty of time before the tide went out. As we arrived at the marine lake it seemed like a typical Sunday afternoon for the local folk out for a walk along the promenade and lake wall.

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