I first met Sandy a few years ago, about 1nm SE of Cape Banks. She had just paddled from Melbourne, visiting Sydney enroute to Cape York so I organised to escort her to Sydney Harbour and show her around.
When I left La Perouse to find her there were camera crews lining the shore hoping to snap photos of a Great White shark that was reputed to be eating pelicans and stray dogs around Botany Bay. As I launched you could almost feel the air of hopeful anticipation that I would lure up the monster and become a newsworthy victim in gory full colour.
Long before I spotted Sandy their hopes were thwarted as I became an ever diminshing but intact dot on the horizon and a story of far more substance quietly paddled under their noses.
The next chapter in Sandy's adventurous story is planned to commence next year when she retraces the first leg of the epic voyage of German adventurer, Oskar Speck who paddled a folding kayak from Germany to Australia arriving in North Australian territorial waters at the onset of WW2.
She was recently in Sydney to research the Oskar Speck archives retained at the Australian Maritime museum and also test paddle some boats while she was here.
Sharon and I were lucky enough to catch up with her for a meal, share some paddling stories and to talk about her upcoming trip.This is a fascinating project and one worth following over the upcoming months.
I will put up a link to her new website as soon as it goes online.