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Portacloy Bay

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Overview






Please note

eOceanic has been made aware of this haven. We are looking for a sailor with first-hand experience to provide their direct personal insights so that we may complete our write up. In advance of this we have posted these preliminary research notes. Do you know this location? Please contact us or click the 'Report a Mistake or Omission' button below to help share this location with the sailing community.


Portacloy, Irish : Port an Chloidh, on the east side of Benwee Head, on the northwest coast of Ireland, is a little creek about half a mile long and 300 metres wide, with no hidden dangers. It is open to the north-east and subject to violent gusts of wind from the mountains, with westerly and south-westerly winds.

It provides tolerable shelter in winds from east through to the south with straightforward access.



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


Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationAnchoring locationScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinity

Considerations
Restriction: shallow, drying or partially drying pier

Protected sectors

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

Approaches
4 stars: Straightforward; when unaffected by weather from difficult quadrants or tidal consideration, no overly complex dangers.
Shelter
3 stars: Tolerable; in suitable conditions a vessel may be left unwatched and an overnight stay.



Last modified
May 30th 2017

Summary* Restrictions apply

A tolerable location with straightforward access.

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


Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationAnchoring locationScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinity

Considerations
Restriction: shallow, drying or partially drying pier



Position and approaches
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Haven position

54° 20.060' N, 009° 46.944' W

this is the position at the quay.

What is the initial fix?

The following Portacloy Bay initial fix will set up a final approach:
54° 21.388' N, 009° 47.212' W
in the North Atlantic Ocean midway between The Stags of Broadhaven and Buddagh.



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 Portacloy Bay for your convenience.
Ten nearest havens by straight line charted distance and bearing:
  1. Porturlin Bay - 1.6 miles ESE
  2. Ross Port - 1.9 miles SSW
  3. Broadhaven Bay - 3.8 miles SW
  4. Belderg Harbour - 5.1 miles E
  5. Frenchport (Portnafrankagh) - 7.4 miles WSW
  6. Blacksod Bay - 10.6 miles SW
  7. Inishkea Island South - 12.1 miles SW
  8. Kilcummin - 12.7 miles E
  9. Killala Bay - 13.1 miles ESE
  10. Keel Bay - 15.4 miles SSW
These havens are ordered by straight line charted distance and bearing, and can be reordered by compass direction or coastal sequence:
  1. Porturlin Bay - 1.6 miles ESE
  2. Ross Port - 1.9 miles SSW
  3. Broadhaven Bay - 3.8 miles SW
  4. Belderg Harbour - 5.1 miles E
  5. Frenchport (Portnafrankagh) - 7.4 miles WSW
  6. Blacksod Bay - 10.6 miles SW
  7. Inishkea Island South - 12.1 miles SW
  8. Kilcummin - 12.7 miles E
  9. Killala Bay - 13.1 miles ESE
  10. Keel Bay - 15.4 miles SSW
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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?
Route location The 'Erris Head to Malin Head' coastal description provides approach information to the suggested initial fix. Vessels approaching from the south should select the northeast bound Route location sequenced description; vessels approaching from the north should select the southwest bound Route location sequence; western approaches may use either description.

Portacloy Bay, Irish : Port an Chloidh meaning bank of the ditch or mound, is an inlet off the North Atlantic Ocean located east of Benwee Head and the Stags of Broad Haven, on the northern coast of County Mayo, on the west coast of Ireland.

The 24 mile stretch of coast from Broad Haven Bay to Killala Bay is most inhospitable as there is no completely safe anchorage, and no shelter from the usual swell and fierce gusts from off the cliffs. The coast is sparsely inhabited and there is little attraction in attempting a landing. However, in really quiet weather or in a southerly breeze, the cliffs some of which are 150 metres high are an unforgettable spectacle, and there are five small coves each with a small slip on its west side where a landing might be effected. Portacloy and Belderg are the best of these and a yacht might find either of them a useful passage anchorage.

The cliffs to the east of Broad Haven are truly awe inspiring but hidden among the craggy headlands is the small inlet of Portacloy, which is directly opposite the unmistakeable Stags of Broadhaven and another spectacular landmark Buddagh a straight sided tower-like column of rock which stands guard just to the west of the entrance to the inlet. The Stags of Broadhaven dominate the seaward view, and they are a mecca for kayakers who can explore their caves and channels including the tunnel through the largest islet.

The small north facing cove of Portacloy is only 0.25 miles wide at its entrance and extends southwards for a distance of no more than a mile. It has clean rocky shores and at its head a beach off which it is best to anchor in 3 metres depth, with a sandy bottom affording good holding. There is a small quay which has 0.4 metre depth near its outer end beside the slip suitable for a dinghy landing. Local boats, mainly curraghs and small lobster fishing boats work out of the bay and often use the cove as a base for a week or two in summer to ride out northwesterly blows, but it is extremely uneasy in these conditions, and only recommended in moderate offshore southerly winds. It is also subject to violent gusts from the mountains during winds from the west and southwest which funnel down the inlet with great violence.


Why visit here?
It is hard to make a case for choosing this location for a landing unless for an emergency as the land, particularly around the head of the bay is exceptionally barren, the grass covered ridged furrows on the hillside are potato drills that remain from before the famine.

However, if you are a keen kayaker, scuba diver or a serious sea rock climber, a short stay at Potacloy Bay will be a treat. Also for walking enthusiasts the grassy cliff tops around Benwee Head provide some challenging expeditions.

Although County Mayo is Ireland's 3rd largest county, the area around Portacloy Bay is sparsely populated with no facilities for the visitor, and the nearest place for provisions etc. is the bustling town of Belmullet about 15 miles away.

It is probably best to use this spot as a bolt hole against some rough weather whilst riding out the storm before continuing to your destination.


What facilities are available?
there are no facilities at this location.


With thanks to:
inyoufootsteps.com site research. Photography with thanks to © Mary HC.


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








The following videos may help first time visitors familiarise themselves with the area around Portacloy.


The following footage is a kayaking trip from Portacloy to the Stags of Broad haven.




A photograph is worth a thousand words. We are always looking for bright sunny photographs that show this haven and its identifiable features at its best. If you have some images that we could use please upload them here. All we need to know is how you would like to be credited for your work and a brief description of the image if it is not readily apparent. If you would like us to add a hyperlink from the image that goes back to your site please include the desired link and we will be delighted to that for you.


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Please note eOceanic makes no guarantee of the validity of this information, we have not visited this haven and do not have first-hand experience to qualify the data. Although the contributors are vetted by peer review as practised authorities, they are in no way, whatsoever, responsible for the accuracy of their contributions. It is essential that you thoroughly check the accuracy and suitability for your vessel of any waypoints offered in any context plus the precision of your GPS. Any data provided on this page is entirely used at your own risk and you must read our legal page if you view data on this site. Free to use sea charts courtesy of Navionics.