The western side of Little Saltee is a stay aboard anchorage that offers protection for up to about a force four from the East. The Saltee Islands require careful navigation owing to the numerous outlying rocks and strong currents. They are however very workable in settled clear conditions and highly enjoyable.
Keyfacts for Little Saltee (west side)
Summary* Restrictions applyA stay-aboard location with attentive navigation required for access.
Position and approaches
Haven position52° 8.205' N, 006° 35.618' W
In the anchorage situated 200 metres off Little Saltee Island’s western shore about midway along the island.
What is the initial fix?
What are the key points of the approach?
Not what you need?
- Little Saltee (landing beach) - 0.4 nautical miles NE
- Little Saltee (east side) - 0.5 nautical miles E
- Great Saltee (landing beach) - 1.1 nautical miles SW
- Gilert Bay - 1.5 nautical miles SSW
- Georgina’s Bay - 1.7 nautical miles SSW
- Kilmore Quay - 2 nautical miles N
- Bannow Bay - 8.6 nautical miles WNW
- Baginbun Bay - 8.9 nautical miles WNW
- Fethard On Sea - 9.1 nautical miles WNW
- Carne - 9.9 nautical miles ENE
How to get in?The Kilmore Quay entry provides approach directions for this haven.
From the initial fix head due south towards Little Saltee Island. Then pass along the western side of Little Saltee keeping within the island’s 2 - 4 metre contours until the midpoint of the island.
This approach keeps a vessel well clear of the two covered dangers situated west of Little Saltee; Murroch's Rock and Jackeen Rock. Murroch's Rock, awash at low water, lies just under ¾ of a mile to the northwest of the Little Saltee Island.
Murrock’s Rock – position: 52 08.753’N, 006° 35.919’W
Jackeen Rock, with 1.5 metres of cover, is situated just over a mile west by southwest of the north tip of Little Saltee Island.
Jackeen Rock – position: 52 08.438’N, 006 36.722’W
The unnamed Privateer Rock, clearly marked on the charts half a mile west of the centre of Little Saltee Island, has 3 metres of cover and should present no difficulty for leisure craft.
Privateer Rock – position: 52° 08.349’N, 006° 35.635’W
Continue along the coast until Goose Rock is identified ahead.
Goose Rock – position: 52° 08.042’N, 006° 35.546’W
The rock dries to 2.6 metres and lies 300 metres off the southwest corner of Little Saltee Island and as such will be clearly visible.
When Goose Rock is approximately 200 metres directly south anchor according to draft and conditions, approximately 200 metres off the shore. Excellent kelp free fine sand holding will be found here.
No landing is typically possible here. However at low water, in very settled conditions, the three storm beaches that face Great Saltee, around the islands southwest corner of Little Saltee, may offer landing opportunities. Keep offshore on the approach as a reef extends from the southwest corner.
Why visit here?The Little Saltee Island Landing Beach entry provides island information.
From a sailing perspective this is another excellent Little Saltee Island lunch stop or tide wait location for those who do not want to commit to the time or expense of entering Kilmore Marina. It is also close enough to St. Patrick’s Bridge to observe the precise turn of the tide so as to maximise the route ‘eight hours of a following tide from Kilmore Quay; east or westbound’.
What facilities are available?There are no facilities on the Little Saltee Island and this anchorage offers no landing capability. Immediately ashore Kilmore Quay has all facilities.
Any security concerns?Security issues are unheard of on the Saltee Islands. In fact if anything the reverse is more likely to be encountered. Local boatmen are very welcoming and you can take it that they will by good nature be keeping an eye on the welfare of your vessel, should she drag whilst you are ashore, and be ready to assist you.
With thanks to:Burke Corbett, Gusserane, New Ross, Co. Wexford. Photography with thanks to Burke Corbett and Michael Harpur.
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