South and west of Islay?

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Ocklepoint
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South and west of Islay?

Postby Ocklepoint » Thu Jan 25, 2018 2:27 pm

I'm thinking of an anti clockwise circumnavigation of Islay next summer.........oh the dreams!

A glance at the chart is a bit frightening, strong tides, overfalls, big waves off both the Rhinns and the Mull of Oa.

Has anyone been round that way?

Any advice, warnings..............?

Thanks

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mm5aho
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Re: South and west of Islay?

Postby mm5aho » Thu Jan 25, 2018 2:54 pm

I was heading to the Clyde one year, single handed and decided to round Islay to the west side.
Wind was about F5, from SW, and I'd come from Scalasaig, Colonsay. I'd not been this way before, and thought to go into Port Ellen, overnight there and continue on toward MoK.
As I tacked through between Colonsay and Islay, the sea became rougher until I was bashing into about a 2m swell. Not that bad I though, and when I can lay off to the south it'll be OK.
Down the coast of Islay, I got about as far as Machir Bay, (a tall antenna tower I remember there) by which time the waves were at about my spreaders height, perhaps 7m. It was really hard going. I noticed a fishing boat further west, and next thing I get a call from him on VHF. Something like "What are you doing out here in that we boat? Are you OK?". Assuring him that I was OK, I based on another 30 minutes, until I realised how exhausted I was, and decided to go back.
I had a slalom ride north, rounded that wee island to the north, then RhuVaal (?) light, and went into anchor off Bunnahabain (?spelling?) distillery, and cooked a meal and went to sleep!. Next tide, through the sound of Islay and on towards MoK. It was dead calm in there, but seemed like a maelstrom out west.
So I never did get to round Islay, but did sail the highest waves sailed in to date!.
Geoff.
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wully
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Re: South and west of Islay?

Postby wully » Thu Jan 25, 2018 8:59 pm

When I first sailed over on the nice side of Cape McCartney there was the wreck of a Russian factory ship on the west side of Gigha. It ended up there after a wave broke on top of the bridge off the SW of Islay killing some of the crew..

The only time I’ve sailed round that way was getting home after a trip round Ireland and from Bloody Foreland we enjoyed a good downwind sail in a meaty swell in Maybe a force 5 against the tide, but once we had the tide with us the swell died.

The trip back from Colraine ( highly recommended ) was smooth.

Guess you gotta pick your weather.

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Re: South and west of Islay?

Postby Jonas » Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:03 am

Had some cracking sails down the West of Jura and Islay making good times with the tide.
One time anchored in Port na Haven and the tide rushing between the islands held us stern to a bitterly cold wind.
Like anything pick the weather and work the tides, and enjoy the Atlantic swell!

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Ocklepoint
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Re: South and west of Islay?

Postby Ocklepoint » Sun Jan 28, 2018 5:46 pm

Thanks for the information and advice: it sounds quite a daunting place.

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wully
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Re: South and west of Islay?

Postby wully » Sun Jan 28, 2018 9:27 pm

Ocklepoint wrote:Thanks for the information and advice: it sounds quite a daunting place.


Like everywhere else, it depends on the weather. It is lovely on a reasonable day- With the wind, tide and swell adding or subtracting from the fun depending on what they’re doing.

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DaveS
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Re: South and west of Islay?

Postby DaveS » Wed Feb 07, 2018 9:36 pm

I've been round the outside of Islay once, clockwise from Lagavulin (after distillery & warehouse tours - recommended). The swell started to become significant approaching The Oa, and remained so round the west coast, refracting round the point of Nave Island where I anchored, giving a quite uncomfortable night.
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