Gales to buffet kayaker

MICHELE ONG
Last updated 08:40 24/06/2014

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Kayaker Scott Donaldson will be hunkering down as strong gales are expected to sweep across the Tasman Sea tonight.

It has been two months since Donaldson, 43, set off from Coffs Harbour in Australia, with plans of reaching New Plymouth by the end of this month.

Overnight on Sunday, easterly winds pushed Donaldson's kayak 12km backwards.

Donaldson is about 592 km from New Plymouth and it is estimated it will be another 15 days before he makes it into the region.

Weatherman Bob McDavitt said the weather was now looking good for Donaldson.

Donaldson's wife Sarah told the Taranaki Daily News that Scott was doing "pretty well" and they have been keeping in touch through text messages.

The family is excited about seeing him again and will head to Taranaki once he makes it to shore, Sarah said.

Urgent food supplies and a newspaper were flown on Friday to Donaldson.

Helicopter Services BOP chief pilot John Funnell wrote on Facebook that it was the "longest paper run" he had done.

It is Donaldson's second attempt to kayak across the Tasman solo.

He is also using the trans- Tasman crossing to raise awareness around the need for physical activity in conjunction with the Asthma Foundation.

In 2010, rower Shaun Quincey had also set out from Coffs Harbour with an aim of arriving in New Plymouth.

He made it, but his 54-day trip ended at Ninety Mile Beach instead of Ngamotu as he intended.

Visit doubleditch.co.nz to track Donaldson's journey.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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