NHS Shetland - Survey - March 2021

Sea kayaker raising funds for lifeboats

Nick Ray arriving at Uyea beach in the northwest corner of Northmavine on Saturday afternoon - Photo and video: Courtesy of Billy Fox.

A SOLO sea kayaker is having a few days’ rest in Lerwick before setting off on the second half of an epic journey that will take him to all 47 RNLI lifeboats stations in Scotland.

Nick Ray, who lives in Portadavie overlooking Loch Fyne, set off on his 2,000-mile journey from the Solway Firth on 1 May.

Having visited Aith’s lifeboat station last week and the Lerwick station on Monday, the 52 year old said he felt privileged to have been able to experience the Scotland the way he has.

“It has been fantastic, I love every minute of it,” he said. “The weather has been a challenge though.

“I was just thinking today (Monday) as I came down from Lunna, where I camped, how beautiful the coastline is from there to Lerwick.

“There just so many parts of Scotland that are incredible, and that I have been very lucky to see.”

While fulfilling a long-held dream he has also so far raised almost £3,000 for the RNLI.

Shetland News has been given video footage of him dragging his sea kayak across the remote Uyea tombolo beach on Saturday afternoon.

After visiting all the lifeboat stations along Scotland’s west coast he took the ferry first to Orkney and then to Shetland. He has spent the last 10 days kayaking around mainland Shetland.

“After a few days’ rest I will take the ferry back to Orkney and in all likelihood also across the Pentland Firth, and then make my way down the east coast to Eyemouth which is the last station on my journey,” he said.

He hopes to complete his adventure by the end of August depending on the weather, and added he doesn’t want to put himself under any time pressure.

His journey, including some spectacular photography, can be followed on his Facebook page at www.facebook.com/2015in2015KayakJourney/timeline

Anyone who wants to support his efforts by donating for the RNLI can visit his fund raising page at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl=2015in2015