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Toberglassan 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.


Inishbofin, together with Inishdooey and Inishbeg are low lying offshore grassy islands situated in the North Atlantic extending from the mainland halfway towards Tory Island, to the east of Bloody Foreland off the north coast of Ireland. Inishboffin Bay offers a couple of anchorages when conditions are suitable with the opportunity of berthing alongside the pier at Inishboffin Island. A further anchorage is available on the east side of the island.

This remote island is entirely exposed to the Atlantic Ocean and shelter at the anchorages can only be classed as tolerable in suitable conditions. Attentive navigation is required when navigating in and out of this broken coastline.



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Keyfacts for Toberglassan Bay
Facilities
Shop with basic provisions availableMarked or notable walks in the vicinity of this locationPleasant family beach in the area


Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationRemote or quiet secluded locationAnchoring locationBeach or shoreline landing from a tenderQuick and easy access from open waterScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinityHistoric, geographic or culturally significant location; or 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
3 stars: Tolerable; in suitable conditions a vessel may be left unwatched and an overnight stay.



Last modified
May 30th 2017

Summary

A tolerable location with attentive navigation required for access.

Facilities
Shop with basic provisions availableMarked or notable walks in the vicinity of this locationPleasant family beach in the area


Nature
No fees for anchoring or berthing in this locationRemote or quiet secluded locationAnchoring locationBeach or shoreline landing from a tenderQuick and easy access from open waterScenic location or scenic location in the immediate vicinityHistoric, geographic or culturally significant location; or in the immediate vicinity

Considerations
None listed



Position and approaches
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Haven position

55° 10.782' N, 008° 10.363' W

this is the position in the anchorage.

What is the initial fix?

The following Inishbofin Island and Bay initial fix. will set up a final approach:
55° 12.019' N, 008° 15.041' W
this is the position in the North Atlantic Ocean midway between Bloody Foreland and Tory Island.



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 Toberglassan Bay for your convenience.
Ten nearest havens by straight line charted distance and bearing:
  1. Tramore Bay - 3 miles E
  2. Tory Island - 3.3 miles NNW
  3. Inishsirrer Island - 4.1 miles SW
  4. Gola Island - 5.1 miles SW
  5. Bunbeg - 5.4 miles SSW
  6. Sheep Haven - 7 miles E
  7. Cruit Bay - 7.3 miles SW
  8. Owey Island - 7.4 miles SW
  9. Mulroy Bay - 7.7 miles E
  10. Burtonport - 9.3 miles SW
These havens are ordered by straight line charted distance and bearing, and can be reordered by compass direction or coastal sequence:
  1. Tramore Bay - 3 miles E
  2. Tory Island - 3.3 miles NNW
  3. Inishsirrer Island - 4.1 miles SW
  4. Gola Island - 5.1 miles SW
  5. Bunbeg - 5.4 miles SSW
  6. Sheep Haven - 7 miles E
  7. Cruit Bay - 7.3 miles SW
  8. Owey Island - 7.4 miles SW
  9. Mulroy Bay - 7.7 miles E
  10. Burtonport - 9.3 miles SW
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?
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.

Inishbofin, Irish : Inis Bo Finne, meaning “island of the white cow”, together with Inishdooey and Inishbeg are low lying grassy islands extending from the mainland halfway towards Tory Island in County Donegal, off the north coast of Ireland. It should not be confused with Inishbofin, Connemara in County Galway.

Lying 2 miles north of Magheraroarty (Irish : Machaire Ui Rabhartaigh) on the mainland coast, Inishbofin is the innermost of the three offshore islands and is connected to the shore by a sand spit which dries, and therefore a passage between Inishbofin and the mainland should not be attempted.

Keelasbeg Sound the passage north of Inishbofin between Inishdooey and Inishbeg is a good short cut if heading from Horn Head to Bloody Foreland but it is encumbered with rocks on each side which leaves only a narrow channel between them.

Inishbofin Bay which is entered between Moylegasaghty Head on the southern coast of the island and Magheraroarty Point on the mainland, has two anchorages. The one in the northern part of the bay at Inishbofin Roadstead affords a temporary anchorage in 5 metres depth during the summer, but it is exposed to the full force of the North Atlantic swell and is untenable in westerly winds. From this anchorage it is possible in suitable weather conditions to come alongside in 3 metres depth at the pier at Inishbofin which extends southwards from the southern end of the island 250 yards south east of Moylegasaghty Head.

The other anchorage in the southern part of the bay at Port Marsh pool in 4 metres depth is approximately 200 yards northeast of Magheraroarty where there is a 320 metre long L shaped pier which is used by local fishing vessels and the ferry to Tory Island, and at which it is possible to make a landing. However this anchorage is even less sheltered than Inishbofin Roadstead in westerly winds.

An alternative popular anchorage is off the east side of the island at Toberglassan Bay in 4 metres depth with good holding in sand. This open bay, in a beautiful setting, is situated on the south west side of Keelasbeg Sound but can be subject to swell even in settled weather which makes for an uncomfortable stay. However it is sheltered in winds from SSE through South and West to WNW, but it is also necessary to avoid Toberglassan Rock when entering. The flat sandy beach makes it ideal for a dinghy landing from where you can explore the whole of the island.


Why visit here?
Covering only 300 acres Inishbofin is a small island measuring 0.75 miles wide and 1.5 miles long, and is nearly bisected by a narrow sandy col which joins the north and south parts of the island. Inishbofin is largely uninhabited and remains virtually unchanged from its heyday in the 1960's and 70's when the 120 islanders enjoyed a tranquil, if tough, existence mainly farming and fishing. Today only a few hardy souls spend all year on the island, but from March to October many of the former islanders return to fish for lobster, crab and Atlantic salmon. Other families move back for the school summer holidays and many of the old houses have been renovated for use as holiday homes. There are two former villages on the island, one near the harbour of An Clachan, and the other a short distance away at An Garradh Ban.

The first inhabitants are believed to have been of Scandinavian origin who arrived at the time of the Viking raids on Ireland's coast in the 9th and 10th centuries, and their descendants are thought to have been exterminated by Cromwellian soldiers in the 17th century. Subsequently the island was settled by mainlanders from County Donegal escaping the oppression and the famine, for it is said that the islands potatoes were unaffected by the blight which destroyed the main food source of Ireland's peasantry, leading to illnesses, deaths and mass emigration caused by the 19th century Great Famine.

Inishbofin has witnessed a number of maritime tragedies. In 1929 an island fishing boat was cut in half in thick fog by a larger boat and all but one man drowned, and in 1940 the ship Stulwik crashed into rocks and 10 people perished. In 1929 Arthur Kingsley Porter, a professor of Fine Arts at Harvard University bought Glenveagh Castle in the heart of the Derryveagh Mountains and made it his home. He also built a house on Inishbofin which he used for weekend breaks with his wife. On the 8th July in 1933 Kingsley Porter disappeared after going for a walk the morning after a massive storm, and was never seen again. Some of the islanders speculated that his wife might have done away with him!

Inishbofin with its cluster of whitewashed houses and its beautiful sandy beaches is a lovely, quiet, untouched island, with beauty and scenery, a good place to relax and get away from the hustle and bustle of modern life. It is a great place for bird watching and walking and the scenery is superb, and the seas around it make it a great spot for canoeing and kayaking.

Until recently there were no facilities for visitors, but in the last decade electricity and running water have been provided, and the island now has a 30 bed hostel at An Clachan which caters for tourists and organised parties. Inishbofin is served by a ferry service from the pier at Magheraroarty on the Donegal mainland, a journey which takes about ten minutes. The islanders enjoy speaking to visitors, preferably in Irish Gaelic, and like telling stories about the island and its history. Linguists have commented on their unusual speech patterns, involving “echo” repetition, said to have been typical of story telling communities.


What facilities are available?
There are no facilities at this location except for a small shop which has limited provisions situated on the southeast side of Toberglassan Bay. Fresh water can be obtained from springs in the rocks also on the southeast side of the bay.


With thanks to:
inyourfootsteps.com site research. Photography with thanks to Colin Park, David Baird, Anthony Foster, Dr. Brian Lynch, Joseph Mischyshyn and Brian Deeney of Donegal Cottage Holidays.


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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 be useful to help first time visitors familiarise themselves with Inishbofin.


The following video presents a photo montage of Magheraroarty.




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.