As I’ve mentioned in my Blogs before we love to go to Croyde Bay in Devon with all the family a couple of times a year.
The Grandsons love the sea and as they’ve got older they have progressed from building sand castles on the beach and rock pooling to more adventurous things including body boarding and surfing.
This year they decided they’d like to try something even more adventurous and they said they’d like to go Coasteering.
What is Coasteering?
So, what is Coasteering?
Although people have probably practised Coasteering for a very long time it was only recognised as an actual activity in 1973. In the book Sea Cliff Climbing, John Cleare and Robin Collomb said:
“A few enthusiasts believe that coasteering will become popular and has a big future”.
Pembrokeshire is legendary for Coasteering, and reputedly its Birthplace, but it’s also very popular in Cornwall, Dorset and Devon.
Coasteering is basically making your way along a rocky coastline on foot or by swimming, without using a boat, surf board or any other sea craft. Coasteering takes place in the “Intertidal Zone”.
The Intertidal Zone is the foreshore or seashore that is above water at low tide and underwater at high tide.
Coasteering can include the following:
- Swimming or Adventure Swimming
- Climbing, scrambling, canyoning, sea level traversing
- Jumping and Diving
It’s always advisable to go Coasteering with a guide that know the area as you never know what’s below the water and when you’re jumping in from a 7-metre cliff you need to be sure there are no hidden rocks under the water.
Equipment you need for Coasteering
Safety is critical when you’re Coasteering, so you must make sure you have the correct equipment:
- Wetsuit – this is not only useful to keep you warm but it also helps prevent you getting scrapes and scratches from the rocks
- Boardshorts – useful to wear over wetsuit to stop it snagging on rocks
- Gloves to prevent abrasions
- Shoes to provide grip on rocks
- Buoyancy aid
Coasteering with Croyde Surf Academy at Baggy Point
On the original day the Boys were due to go Coasteering the weather wasn’t very good. The Instructor suggested rescheduling as the winds were very high and they would be very limited to what they would be able to do for safety reasons.
We were happy to reschedule as safety is obviously very important and we were glad of the advice from the Instructors. It was reassuring to know that safety was a top priority for them.
The Coasteering session was rescheduled for the Wednesday so we took the Boys along to Croyde Surf Academy at 11.30am. Mr G, their Dad, decided he’d like to try it as well so he was joining the session with them.
When they arrived at the Surf Academy they received their safety equipment, helmet and buoyancy aids. The Boys and Mr G all have their own wetsuits, so they decided to wear their own. They wore old pairs of trainers for grip on the rocks. And, to stop the wetsuits getting snagged when they are sliding on the rocks they wore a pair of boardshorts over the top.
Once they were all kitted up and had received the safety briefing they made their way to the National Trust car park at Baggy Point.
From the National Trust car park there’s easy access to the shoreline so off they went.
Although we couldn’t go with them we were able to walk along the coast path up to Baggy point where we were able to catch glimpses of them below. We could see them scrambling across rocks, jumping into the sea, swimming across inlets and having fun.
What did they think of Coasteering?
The Boys and Mr G finally made their way back to the National Trust car park 3 hours later. The Boys were beaming, they’d had great fun. The jumps into the sea from the cliffs and rocks had apparently got higher and higher until the highest one was 7 metres up!
I think it’s safe to say the Boys will definitely be doing it again, but I’m not quite so sure about Mr G who said he had a bit of a wobble when it came to the 7 metre jump, but he still did it.
Thanks to Croyde Surf Academy they all had a brilliant time.