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Between Rat & Salt Island

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Overview





This anchorage to the west of Salt Island is situated in the Quoile River estuary, within Strangford Lough’s south-western corner, and is located on the northeast coast of Ireland. It offers a very good river anchorage with excellent holding.

This anchorage to the west of Salt Island is situated in the Quoile River estuary, within Strangford Lough’s south-western corner, and is located on the northeast coast of Ireland. It offers a very good river anchorage with excellent holding.

Inside the Quoile River, like many of the islands and snug creeks on the western shore, a vessel will find a host of totally secure anchorages. This anchorage offers complete protection and is a particularly good anchorage when seeking protection from strong easterly conditions. The enclosed stretch of water provides shelter sailing in all weather, all tides and has ample marks to make daylight navigation straightforward.



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Keyfacts for Between Rat & Salt Island



Last modified
July 18th 2018

Summary

A completely protected location with attentive navigation required for access.

Facilities
Marked or notable walks in the vicinity of this location


Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationAnchoring locationBeach or shoreline landing from a tenderJetty or a structure to assist landingScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinity

Considerations
Note: strong tides or currents in the area that require consideration



Position and approaches
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Haven position

54° 22.497' N, 005° 39.245' W

Between Rat & Salt Island – to the west of Salt Island.

What are the initial fixes?

The following waypoints will set up a final approach:

(i) Quoile River Initial Fix

54° 23.614' N, 005° 38.195' W

300 metres east of ‘Town Rock’ off Killyleagh. This is a distinctive red cylindrical brick pillar marker lit QW. From here a bearing of 210°, passing Green Island to port, takes a vessel down the middle of the Quoile River.

(ii) Killyleagh Initial Fix

54° 23.573' N, 005° 37.537' W

Between Barrel and Skate Rocks that are marked by perches. It is set upon the useful transit marked on the Admiralty chart keeping Portaferry pier open upon Chapel Island.
Please note

Initial fixes only set up their listed targets. Do not plan to sail directly between initial fixes as a routing sequence.




What are the key points of the approach?

Offshore details for vessels approaching Strangford Lough from the north are available in the northeast Ireland’s Coastal Overview for Malin Head to Strangford Lough Route location. Details for vessels approaching from the south are available in eastern Ireland’s Coastal Overview for Strangford Lough to Dublin Bay Route location. Details of the approaches, tidal timings and the run up the Narrows to about a ½ mile below Strangford are covered in the Entering and exiting the Strangford Narrows Route location.


Not what you need?
Click the 'Next' and 'Previous' buttons to progress through neighbouring havens in a coastal 'clockwise' or 'anti-clockwise' sequence. Below are the ten nearest havens to Between Rat & Salt Island for your convenience.
Ten nearest havens by straight line charted distance and bearing:
  1. Brandy Bay - 0.2 miles NNE
  2. Moore’s Point - 0.2 miles NW
  3. South of Salt Island - 0.2 miles E
  4. Quoile - 0.4 miles WSW
  5. Killyleagh - 0.9 miles N
  6. West of Jackdaw Island - 1 miles ENE
  7. Between Jackdaw & Chapel Island - 1.2 miles ENE
  8. Holm Bay - 1.3 miles NNE
  9. Chapel Island - 1.3 miles ENE
  10. East Down Yacht Club - 1.5 miles N
These havens are ordered by straight line charted distance and bearing, and can be reordered by compass direction or coastal sequence:
  1. Brandy Bay - 0.2 miles NNE
  2. Moore’s Point - 0.2 miles NW
  3. South of Salt Island - 0.2 miles E
  4. Quoile - 0.4 miles WSW
  5. Killyleagh - 0.9 miles N
  6. West of Jackdaw Island - 1 miles ENE
  7. Between Jackdaw & Chapel Island - 1.2 miles ENE
  8. Holm Bay - 1.3 miles NNE
  9. Chapel Island - 1.3 miles ENE
  10. East Down Yacht Club - 1.5 miles N
To find locations with the specific attributes you need try:

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How to get in?
Convergance Point Details of the approaches, tidal timings and the run up the Narrows to about a ½ below Strangford are covered in the Entering and exiting the Strangford Narrows Route location route description.

Having entered Strangford Lough make for the Quoile River Initial Fix between Barrel and Skate Rocks that are both marked by perches. Barrel Rock which uncovers at low water and normally has racing Mark 4 close by lies to the north, and Skate Rock which uncovers at four hours of ebb and normally has a racing mark K close by lies to the south. A useful transit to pass between the Barrel and Skate rocks is available by looking astern on approach and keeping Portaferry pier open upon Chapel Island. The Killyleagh Initial Fix is on this transit indicated on the Admiralty chart between the rocks.

Once between Barrel and Skate rocks do not be tempted to cut directly to the river as the normally unmarked Riggs Shoal is situated in this area. Continue on to the Quoile River Initial Fix or the area immediately before it if obstructed by moored yachts.
The Quoile River Initial Fix is 300 metres east of ‘Town Rock’ off Killyleagh. This is a highly distinctive red brick pillar marker, that looks not unlike a ‘Rook’ chess piece, and is lit QW. This waypoint places the vessel outside the mouth of the River Quoile. It takes a west-southwest direction from off Killyleagh to Quoile for a distance of approximately 2.5 miles. A bearing of 210° from the waypoint, passing Green Island to port, takes a vessel down the middle of the river.
From there you will see Salt Island opposite from Moore’s Point. Follow the river down and then turn into the channel between the islands slightly favouring the Rat Island side where you will find plenty of water.

Haven location Anchor in a depth to your preference where excellent holding is to be found. Land on the beach, but be aware of substantial mud flats during low tide.


Why visit here?
This Salt Island anchorage is an ideal location to find protection from most quarters, and particularly from very strong easterlies.

Salt Island is one of the many picturesque islands in Strangford Lough owned and preserved for future generations by the National Trust. It is a wonderful place to go for a walk or even stay over camping.

It was however occupied and farmed in the past as there is evidence of mid to late Victorian paddocks, ‘lazy beds’, stone banks and remnants of hedges. The island is now home to Northern Ireland’s first ever ‘bothy’ or bunkhouse on the south side of the island that is also owned by The National Trust. The original ‘bothy’, which had been pointlessly vandalised in the 90s and reduced to function as a sheep house, was restored in 2008. It offers basic shelter for up to 12 people with running water, a wood burning stove, and toilets. The ‘bothy’ is locked when not in use and advance booking is essential to gain access. For bookings and further information contact The National Trust on +44 28 4488 1204.

There are also two official camping areas on the island where it is pleasant to spend a night, one within the ‘bothy’ grounds and one on the Brandy Bay side of the island. A small dilapidated stone jetty, that in the past was used to land farm animals, can be called upon for landing on the island.

The area to the southwest of Salt Island, where the Slaney River exits into the Lough, is of historical interest. It was here that St. Patrick landed in 432 A.D and went to Saul to be confronted by the local Chieftain. He became Patrick's first Irish convert to Christianity.


What facilities are available?
There are no facilities at this river anchorage.


Any security concerns?
Never a problem known to have occurred off Salt Island.


With thanks to:
Brian Crawford, local Strangford Lough boatman of many decades.


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Please zoom out to see the 'initial fixes' for this location.
The above plots are not precise and indicative only.








About Between Rat & Salt Island

This Salt Island anchorage is an ideal location to find protection from most quarters, and particularly from very strong easterlies.

Salt Island is one of the many picturesque islands in Strangford Lough owned and preserved for future generations by the National Trust. It is a wonderful place to go for a walk or even stay over camping.

It was however occupied and farmed in the past as there is evidence of mid to late Victorian paddocks, ‘lazy beds’, stone banks and remnants of hedges. The island is now home to Northern Ireland’s first ever ‘bothy’ or bunkhouse on the south side of the island that is also owned by The National Trust. The original ‘bothy’, which had been pointlessly vandalised in the 90s and reduced to function as a sheep house, was restored in 2008. It offers basic shelter for up to 12 people with running water, a wood burning stove, and toilets. The ‘bothy’ is locked when not in use and advance booking is essential to gain access. For bookings and further information contact The National Trust on +44 28 4488 1204.

There are also two official camping areas on the island where it is pleasant to spend a night, one within the ‘bothy’ grounds and one on the Brandy Bay side of the island. A small dilapidated stone jetty, that in the past was used to land farm animals, can be called upon for landing on the island.

The area to the southwest of Salt Island, where the Slaney River exits into the Lough, is of historical interest. It was here that St. Patrick landed in 432 A.D and went to Saul to be confronted by the local Chieftain. He became Patrick's first Irish convert to Christianity.

Other options in this area


Click the 'Next' and 'Previous' buttons to progress through neighbouring havens in a coastal 'clockwise' or 'anti-clockwise' sequence. Alternatively here are the ten nearest havens available in picture view:
Coastal clockwise:
Brandy Bay - 0.2 miles NNE
South of Salt Island - 0.2 miles E
West of Jackdaw Island - 1 miles ENE
Between Jackdaw & Chapel Island - 1.2 miles ENE
Chapel Island - 1.3 miles ENE
Coastal anti-clockwise:
Quoile - 0.4 miles WSW
Moore’s Point - 0.2 miles NW
Killyleagh - 0.9 miles N
Holm Bay - 1.3 miles NNE
Don O’Neill Island - 1.5 miles NNE





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