Following on from the post a couple of days ago here are a few photographs of Brittany lighthouses. There are endless opportunities for viewing them from your sea kayak, and here are a few more. They are mainly from the north coast of Brittany. I might be biased but I think the lighthouses on the north coast generally look more dramatic than those to the south.
Sadly they are now all unmanned but when we started to visit these offshore buildings a number were still manned and it was always a pleasure to take out the daily papers and some fresh milk. These small gestures often resulted in the offer of a hot drink and on a few occasions a guided tour of the lighthouse. Sadly these days are long gone.
Situated in the Baie de Morlaix, Ile Noire lighthouse was built in 1845, with the keepers house added in 1879. Paddling in this area is always enjoyable with numerous islands to explore.
La Croix. Built in 1867 it is situated just to the south west of Ile de Brehat
. In common with some many lighthouses in this area the Germans blew the top of the light as they retreated. It is always a welcome sight when paddling around Brehat.
Cap Frehel is the largest headland on the north Brittany coast and on clear nights I can see this light from near my house on Jersey. It is open to visitors a certain times of the year. The headland is spectacular when viewed from below in a sea kayak or whilst walking along the cliffs.
Sept Iles lighthouse is situated on Ile aux Moines, part of a delightful archipelago to the north of Tregastel. This was one of the last lighthouses in France to be manned by keepers.
The Port Navalo light marks to entrance to the Gulf du Morbihan.
This is one of the finest sea kayaking areas anywhere, a mixture of fast tidal streams and world class historic sites. The lighthouse was built in 1892.
There is something special about Breton lighthouses , particularly when viewed from a sea kayak. This is a selection of some that I have seen over the years. Not all of the photographs are of the best quality as some were scanned from slides. That said Breton lighthouses are amongst the most unique maritime buildings encountered anywhere and it is always a treat to visit them by sea kayak.
Le Heaux de Brehat. To the west of Ile de Brehat on the north coast of Brittany it was built in 1840, although the top was blown off by the Germans in August 1944. Located on an offshore reef, the sea kayak is an ideal way to access this light. It is close to the end of the Sillon de Talbert
Ile Louet is situated in the Baie e Morlaix, near Roscoff on the north coast of Brittany.
25 nautical miles west of Corbiere is the Roches Douvres. The light was finished being rebuilt in 1954 after it had been destroyed by the Germans 10 years before. We raised the Jersey flag but the following morning it was a serious crossing of 25 miles in dense fog. I have to admit that we felt pretty isolated the night we spent on the reef.
L’Ost Pic is located just to the south of Paimpol. Built in the 1890’s I have to admit that the last time I landed there I ended up swimming.
Phare du Paon is situated on the north coast of Ile de Brehat, this is ome of the finest sea kayaking you could find anywhere. It was originally built in 1860 but like so many lighthouses along this coast it was blown up by the Germans in1944. It was rebuilt in 1949.
Another lighthouse blown up by the Germans, this light, Le Grand Jardin, marks the approaches to St Malo. It was rebuilt in 1949.
These are the last of the old photographs that I have been able to scan in for a while. Some good memories of paddling in Jersey and further afield.
Derek Hairon on the Roche du Diable in southern Brittany, Easter 1983. This was a time when canoes were not seen that frequently on white water in Europe.
Playing at Le Mourier Valley. We used to build little dams to hold back the water and then release it so that it was possible to shoot down the concrete steps. It was best to do it whilst it was still raining. It has been quite a few years since we did this last, should be time for a return visit.
Self rescues off Greve de Lecq. This was experimenting on a Senior Instructor Training course in about 1982.
Nicky off the southern tip of the Quiberon Peninsula in 1984. We were crossing to Houat, a delightful island, for lunch.
Arriving in Carteret on the Normandy coast. The 14th July 1989, we had gone over for the 200th anniversary of the storming of the Bastille.
On the Rance in France, in the early 1990’s. It was one of those days when kayaking on the sea would have involved paddling from one sheltered location to the next, but in Brittany there are plenty of sheltered estuaries to head to.
Canoeing in the forests of northern Maine. Great family holidays in the early 1990’s.
The girls may have enjoyed this part of the holiday more. On the statue of Andre the seal in Rockport. Andre just a great children’s book and film. The tape version was played for hours on car journeys.