Marathon kayaker paddles into Kinghorn

Nick Ray approaches Kinghorn's RNLI station on Monday.
Nick Ray approaches Kinghorn's RNLI station on Monday.

Kinghorn RNLI Lifeboat welcomed Nick Ray to the station this week as he nears the end of his challenge to kayak around the coast of Scotland and visit every RNLI lifeboat station.

Nick began his challenge at Kippford on the Solway Firth in May, and he has been making his way around Scotland since, visiting 42 stations to date. This includes the Western Isles, Orkney and Shetland, and as far inland as Fort Augustus, where the Loch Ness lifeboat is based. The distance of this route is around 2,015 miles.

The challenge was the result of a long-held ambition of Nick’s to paddle around Scotland and, whilst planning his trip, he thought it would be a great challenge to visit the 47 Scottish lifeboat stations during the voyage and raise money for the RNLI charity.

Nick arrived to a warm welcome at Kinghorn Lifeboat Station on Monday afternoon after paddling from Shell Bay, by Elie, where he camped on Sunday night.

Nick said, ‘I received a wonderfully warm welcome here at Kinghorn. It is the 50th year of its service and I was presented with a lovely book outlining the station’s history.

‘The 2015 in 2015 Challenge has been just that, with the particularly windy summer adding to the challenge. On my way up the west coast, we experienced many days of northerly winds, and recently I have had the challenges of the east coast with east winds and large waves. This was much tougher than I expected.

The adventurer stayed at Kinghorn RNLI boathouse on Monday night and set off for South Queensferry on Tuesday morning, very appreciative of the warm shower and not having to sleep under canvas.

Kinghorn crewmember Neil Chalmers who is also a keen kayaker, said: “We are all very impressed with Nick’s determination and success in making it to Kinghorn.

“He has been averaging six to 10 hours per day in his boat, and travelling on average, 18 miles a day. This is no mean feat, and we commend him for choosing to raise money for the RNLI charity during his challenge.

‘He hopes to raise £5,000 during the trip and we would love to see him meet, and hopefully smash, this target. The effort and endurance involved in this challenge is significant.’

Nick has a Virgin Money page where donations can be made; it can be found at 2015 in 2015 – Sea Kayaking around Scotland.