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Ballynatra

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Overview





Ballynatra is located in Co. Cork on Ireland’s southwest coast within Dunmanus Bay and close to Sheep's Head. Situated in a small cove it offers a temporary anchorage in settled conditions plus an ideal location to land a shore party on the outer peninsula.

Completely open to the southwest and with a large reef in the centre of the cove, this is a fair weather stay-aboard anchorage. The cove provides protection from offshore winds, west-northwest through north to east. Attentive navigation is required for access. Although there are no off-lying dangers excellent visibility and settled conditions are required to see the sandy patch in which to anchor, and the adjacent reef.
Please note

There is very little swinging room and a vessel should not be left unattended should conditions suddenly change.




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Keyfacts for Ballynatra
Facilities
Slipway availableMarked or notable walks in the vicinity of this location


Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationRemote or quiet secluded locationAnchoring locationJetty or a structure to assist landingScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinity

Considerations
None listed

Protected sectors

Current wind over the protected quadrants
Minimum depth
3 metres (9.84 feet).

Approaches
3 stars: Attentive navigation; daylight access with dangers that need attention.
Shelter
1 stars: Stay-aboard; lunch stop or tide-wait exposed or tenacious holding location where a vessel should not be left unattended.



Last modified
July 19th 2018

Summary

A stay-aboard location with attentive navigation required for access.

Facilities
Slipway availableMarked or notable walks in the vicinity of this location


Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationRemote or quiet secluded locationAnchoring locationJetty or a structure to assist landingScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinity

Considerations
None listed



Position and approaches
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Haven position

51° 33.500' N, 009° 45.500' W

In the anchoring area within the cove. Final positioning will require careful eye-ball navigation.

What are the initial fixes?

The following waypoints will set up a final approach:

(i) Dunmanus Bay initial fix

51° 30.700' N, 009° 51.200' W

This initial fix positions an Atlantic approach to Dunmanus Bay and is set midway between Sheep's Head and Mizen Head.

(ii) Ballynatra Landing initial fix

51° 33.000' N, 009° 46.000' W

This waypoint is a third of a nautical mile east by southeast of Foilavaun Point that is located 2.75 miles east by northeast of Sheep's Head Light. A course of 31° for a distance of 1,200 metres will lead into the cove.
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 are available in southwestern Ireland’s Coastal Overview for Mizen Head to Loop Head 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 Ballynatra for your convenience.
Ten nearest havens by straight line charted distance and bearing:
  1. Dooneen Pier - 0.7 miles ENE
  2. Kilcrohane Pier - 1.6 miles ENE
  3. Dunmanus Harbour - 2.2 miles ESE
  4. Goleen - 2.7 miles SSE
  5. Carrigmore Bay - 2.9 miles SE
  6. Toormore Cove - 3 miles ESE
  7. Lonehort Harbour - 3.1 miles NNW
  8. Lawrence Cove - 3.2 miles NNW
  9. Kitchen Cove - 3.3 miles ENE
  10. Crookhaven - 3.4 miles SSE
These havens are ordered by straight line charted distance and bearing, and can be reordered by compass direction or coastal sequence:
  1. Dooneen Pier - 0.7 miles ENE
  2. Kilcrohane Pier - 1.6 miles ENE
  3. Dunmanus Harbour - 2.2 miles ESE
  4. Goleen - 2.7 miles SSE
  5. Carrigmore Bay - 2.9 miles SE
  6. Toormore Cove - 3 miles ESE
  7. Lonehort Harbour - 3.1 miles NNW
  8. Lawrence Cove - 3.2 miles NNW
  9. Kitchen Cove - 3.3 miles ENE
  10. Crookhaven - 3.4 miles SSE
To find locations with the specific attributes you need try:

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Chart
Please use our integrated Navionics chart to appraise the haven and its approaches. Navionics charts feature in premier plotters from B&G, Raymarine, Magellan and are also available on tablets. Open the chart in a larger viewing area by clicking the expand to 'new tab' or the 'full screen' option.

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How to get in?
Yacht anchored in Ballynatra
Image: Gareth Thomas


The small cove of Ballynatra is situated about midway between Foilavaun Point and Dooneen Point, less than a mile from either.

Convergance Point Details for the run up the long and narrow Dunmanus Bay are covered in the Dunbeacon Harbour Click to view haven entry.

Initial fix location From the Ballynatra initial fix steer a course of 31°T for 1000 metres to the foot of the cove. Closer in, the beach and slipway will be seen at the head of the cove. Enter the cove and look for a sandy patch to the south-eastern side of the visible rock in the centre.

Haven location Anchor in a depth to your preference paying specific attention to the swing room should the wind shift. There is a boat slip and landing at the head of the bay.


Why visit here?
Ballynatra derives its name from its Irish name Baile na Trá meaning “Strand Homestead”. Situated within five miles of the remote Sheep’s Head the inlet provides an ideal settled weather location to land a shore party to explore this remote and rewarding Sheep’s Head peninsula.

Separating Bantry Bay and Dunmanus Bay, with Sheep’s Head at its extremity, the peninsula has much to offer the walker, cyclist and climber. The name Sheep’s Head is a rough translation of the Irish name and is also known in Irish as Muntervary, from the Gaelic Rinn Mhuintir Bháire that meaning “the headland people of Bháire”. The name dates back to 1846 - 49 when the Ordnance Survey came to west Cork under the command of the exceptional English military surveyor, astronomer and engineer, William Yolland. The Irish names were sometimes difficult to pronounce for non-Irish speakers and the Ordnance Survey approach was to create rough translations that were more easily expressed such as the anglicised Sheep’s Head.

This approach became the basis for the famous play 'Translations' by Brian Friel set around a young man called George Yolland in 18th-century County Donegal. At the end of Friel’s play George Yolland was missing, possibly dead, which was very different to the real Yolland who went on to a resounding career in overseeing the UK rail infrastructure. Furthermore the true William Yolland was above the naming simplification and always questioned the process. When told that they ''were clarifying place names that were riddled with confusion'', Yolland stated ''Who is confused? are the people confused? something is being eroded here''. Interestingly Rinn Mhuintir Bháire still appears on Ordnance Survey maps in conjunction with the anglicised name ‘Sheep’s Head’.

Ballynatra offers an ideal landing position near the outer end of the peninsula. This makes it possible for a shore party to pick up the outer and more dramatic sections of the ‘Sheep's Head Way’. Following the old track from the landing area up to the well-marked road leads down the headland’s jagged, hummocky landscape that is dotted with small lakes as it narrows to a lighthouse at the tip. The remote finger of the headland is truly a wild and beautiful place with impressive cliffs. For those who decide to explore the peninsula, Ordnance Survey Discovery Series Sheet 88 should be a faithful companion.

Visitors keen to land should not overlook the attributes of this beautiful little cove that in settled conditions offers more than a pleasant lunch stop or place to land. Snorkellers will find the cove a paradise on a settled sunny day. The combination of enclosed rock, sand and nutrient-rich Atlantic waves have created a rich and vibrant array of seaweeds and sea life immediately beneath the surface.


What facilities are available?
This is a remote and isolated location with nothing but a slip in the cove.


Any security concerns?
It is advisable that a vessel is not left unattended in case natural conditions change which would put the vessel at risk. That being said, it is highly unlikely that another soul will be seen at this location.


With thanks to:
Gareth Thomas, Yacht Jalfrezi. Photography with thanks to Gareth Thomas, Andrew Wood,Kevin Higgins, Petra 15 and Richard Webb.


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
























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