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White Bay

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Overview





White Bay is situated on the south coast of Ireland immediately within the entrance to Cork Harbour. It offers an anchorage off a secluded beach.

Set inside the neck of Cork Harbour, and on its eastern shoreline, it offers good protection from any condition with an easterly component. Safe access is assured in all reasonable conditions by Cork Harbour, one of the most easily approached and well-marked harbours in the world.



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Keyfacts for White Bay
HM  +353 21 4273125      info@portofcork.ie      Ch.12, 14, 16
Approaches
5 stars: Safe access; all reasonable conditions.
Shelter
4 stars: Good; assured night's sleep except from specific quarters.



Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationAnchoring locationBeach or shoreline landing from a tenderQuick and easy access from open waterNavigation lights to support a night approachRemote or quiet secluded locationScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinityHistoric, geographic or culturally significant location; or in the immediate vicinity
Facilities
Pleasant family beach in the area

Last modified
May 22nd 2018; suggest a correction?

Protected sectors

Current wind over the protected quadrants
Now Force

Summary

A good location with safe access.

LWS draught

3 metres (9.84 feet).

Today's tide estimates

HW 01:36 (3.5m) LW 08:18 (0.9m)
HW 14:10 (3.4m) LW 20:49 (0.9m)
Now approaching Springs

Swell today




Approaches
5 stars: Safe access; all reasonable conditions.
Shelter
4 stars: Good; assured night's sleep except from specific quarters.



Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationAnchoring locationBeach or shoreline landing from a tenderQuick and easy access from open waterNavigation lights to support a night approachRemote or quiet secluded locationScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinityHistoric, geographic or culturally significant location; or in the immediate vicinity
Facilities
Pleasant family beach in the area

Last modified
May 22nd 2018; suggest a correction?

Position and approaches
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Haven position

51° 48.290' N, 008° 15.150' W

This is set in about 3 metres in the middle of the bay.

What is the initial fix?

The following Cork Harbour initial will set up a final approach:
51° 46.580' N, 008° 15.460' W
This waypoint is a mile out from the entrance and near the Outflow Marker Fl(Y) 20s. It is set on the alignment of 354° (T) of the Dogsnose leading lights that are situated on the east side of Cork Harbour entrance. This waypoint sets up an east channel approach but a vessel may alter course to and enter via the west channel.


What are the key points of the approach?

Offshore details are available in southeastern Ireland’s Coastal Overview for Rosslare Harbour to Cork Harbour Route location. Details for vessels approaching from the southwest are available in southwestern Ireland’s Coastal Overview for Cork Harbour to Mizen Head Route location. Use the directions provided for the Cork City Marina Click to view haven for Cork Harbour approaches and entry.


Not what you need?
Try our Advanced Havens Search tool to find locations with the specific attributes you need, or click the 'Next', coastal clockwise, or 'Previous', coastal anti-clockwise, buttons to progress through neighbouring havens. Below are the ten nearest havens to White Bay for your convenience.
Ten nearest havens by straight line distance
  1. Crosshaven - 1.1 miles W
  2. Spike Island - 1.5 miles NW
  3. Ringabella Bay - 1.7 miles SW
  4. Aghada - 1.8 miles NNE
  5. Cuskinny - 1.8 miles N
  6. Drake’s Pool - 1.9 miles W
  7. Cobh - 1.9 miles NNW
  8. Cork Harbour Marina - 2.4 miles NW
  9. East Ferry Marina - 2.5 miles NNE
  10. Robert's Cove - 2.7 miles SSW
Ten nearest havens by straight line distance
  1. Crosshaven - 1.1 miles W
  2. Spike Island - 1.5 miles NW
  3. Ringabella Bay - 1.7 miles SW
  4. Aghada - 1.8 miles NNE
  5. Cuskinny - 1.8 miles N
  6. Drake’s Pool - 1.9 miles W
  7. Cobh - 1.9 miles NNW
  8. Cork Harbour Marina - 2.4 miles NW
  9. East Ferry Marina - 2.5 miles NNE
  10. Robert's Cove - 2.7 miles SSW
Alternatively the above can be ordered by compass direction or coastal sequence


How to get in?
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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White Bay
Image: Jason Sheehan


White Bay is located immediately within the entrance to Cork Harbour, on its eastern side and ¾ of a mile north of Roches Point, It offers an attractive rural anchorage with a sandy beach.

Convergance Point Use the directions provided for the Cork City Marina Click to view haven for Cork Harbour approaches and entry.

Haven location Once beyond Harbour Rock, take a central channel approach following the leading lights alignment of 034.5° that leads through the west channel. These are mounted on a set of white huts, at elevations of 11 metres and 21 metres, that stand close to the shore near the northern head of White Bay. Anchor according to draft and conditions in sand with excellent holding. Land on the beach by dinghy.


What's the story here?
White Bay is a beautiful anchorage set into the Cork Harbour entrance. It provides views of Cork’s Lower Harbour to the north, plus Roche’s Point Lighthouse and the outer Ringabella Bay coastline to the south.

This remote, secluded location is best known by rod fishermen and particularly those who like to harvest a night tide. Its best fishing is to be had in the deep water channel 150 metres out from the beach which is ideal for boatmen who want to try their luck. Flatfish, Bass, Codling, Conger Eels and Dogfish plus Rays are regularly pulled in here.

The anchorage also offers a unique opportunity to explore nearby Fort Davis. Originally, Fort Carlisle, it was renamed Fort Davis on its return to the Irish state in July 1938. This was in memory of Cork’s Thomas Davis, (1814 –1845) the revolutionary Irish writer and poet who was the chief organiser of the Young Ireland movement. Fort Davis corresponds with Fort Meagher, previously known as Fort Camden, at the opposite side of the entrance.
The two forts together, set on harbour entrance promontories, are dramatic features and they are positioned at the narrowest point of the entrance where they would have had most effect at closing out an enemy invader. These entrance forts were, however, a late Cork Harbour military construction.

The first fortifications were built to protect Cork City and were in and around the surrounds of the ancient metropolis. In the 18th century, fortifications were built on Haulbowline Island to protect the anchorage and the garrison town of Cobh. Fort Camden and Fort Carlisle were started around 1780 and constructed during the American War of Independence. Convict labour was used to complete the construction of both these forts and they remained there for decades afterwards, until finally at the end of 1867 the convicts were replaced by military and civilian labour.

Today the forts are known colloquially as "Camden" and "Carlisle", and not by their official titles. Since being handed over to the Irish military most of the installations have ceased to be used for military purposes and have seen little upkeep in the ensuing decades. Fort Meagher is now being renovated and cared for by local volunteers and enthusiasts and can be visited by the public on open days. It can be accessed by a walk from Crosshaven. Although less elaborate than Fort Camden, Fort Carlisle continues to be used by the Defence Forces for FIBUA training but is not secured and is in a neglected state. A visit to the site will prove absorbing to anyone who has an interest in military history as three centuries of military fortifications can be seen side by side – see video below.

From a sailing point of view, White Bay offers visitors a beautifully secluded anchorage off an extensive white sand Blue Flag beach. It is also an ideal location for late arriving first-time-visitors to park up overnight to address Cork’s lower harbour in daylight. Although very well marked for night navigation, owing to Cobh’s lights and the vast amount of markers in the lower harbour area, first-time visitors may find a night entry challenging. White Bay makes this an unnecessary challenge during easterlies, just as the Ringabella anchorage, immediately outside the entrance, provides a useful berth during westerlies. Beyond these outer anchorages, casual anchoring in the lower harbour is difficult owing to the number of unlit moorings that will be encountered in any useful anchoring location.


What facilities are available?
There are no facilities at White Bay. It has road access that connects to Midleton via the R630 from Whitegate. The beach has a car park that lies adjacent to the road leading to Roche’s Point and the pathway to the beach will be found in the left-hand corner of the car park.

Cork Harbour is a major yachting centre for Ireland and as such you can get everything you need inside the lower harbour area. The main concentration of services however is a couple of miles away at Crosshaven.


Any security concerns?
Never an issue known to have occurred to vessels at anchor at this secluded location.


With thanks to:
James O’Brien the Cork Harbour Marina owner and manager. Photographs with thanks to Jason Sheehan and John Finn.


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