Leeds & West Yorkshire

Pair finish first 2,100-mile open canoe circumnavigation of Britain

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Media captionThe pair paddled 2,500-mile around Britain in an open canoe

Two men have completed what is thought to be the first circumnavigation of Britain's coastline in an open canoe.

Starting in Strontian on the west coast of Scotland on 30 April, Colin Skeath and nephew Davis Gould-Duff travelled 2,100 miles (3,380km) clockwise.

The pair paddled over 86 days and completed several challenging crossings including Wales to Northern Ireland.

The men were raising money for the Forget Me Not Children's Hospice in Huddersfield.

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The trip was completed on Monday evening.

Image caption The pair paddled over 86 days to complete the journey

Mr Skeath, 50, a retired West Yorkshire Police officer who now lives in Strontian, said he got into canoeing in 2011 and had been inspired by a former teacher.

"I enjoyed 90% of the trip, 10% was just real hard work. It was quite exciting at times, he said.

"It has never been done in an open canoe."

Mr Skeath said he and Mr Gould-Duff, 25, from Limerick in Ireland, had had the "odd tiff but generally it was fantastic, he was a solid partner in a boat".

Image caption At times a sail aided the journey

He said the best view had come relatively early in the journey as the pair were heading north along the Scottish coast when they saw Cape Wraith and had turned eastwards.

"That was a bit of a milestone and I thought 'We can do this'," he said.

Image copyright Canoe around Britain
Image caption The journey started and finished in Scotland
Image copyright Canoe around Britain
Image caption Viewed from shore the canoe looked insignificant against the ocean

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