Everything was reduced to wind, water and me: an exhilarating adventure in Northumberland

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Our writer heads to north-east England to go coasteering, rockpooling and wing surfing – with dolphins and puffins offering moral support

I’m standing by a sand dune listening to Kevin Anderson’s briefing on our coasteering trip, which is about to start. “Remember,” he says, “Seaweed slippy, barnacles grippy.” But my eye is being drawn to a strange object beside him. Is it a lectern inside a bag? Or a UFO that he found on the beach? Eventually curiosity gets the better of me and I ask what it is.

“That’s for another course. It’s a foil.” He takes the bag off to reveal two boogie boards – one thick and large, the other small and thin – connected by a strut. “You surf on the bigger board and use a hand-held inflatable wing – like a kite – to power it up. When you get some speed, it rises up and you go fast – it’s a hydrofoil. It’s new. Very powerful and very exciting.”

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