Islay trip 2011^

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RULAND
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Islay trip 2011^

Post by RULAND » Sat Jan 08, 2011 12:51 pm

Hello,

I prepare a trip around Islay for the first week of may 2011. I am looking for some informations (timetable, maps, local informations...)
I am based in Brittany, so I have to find the way to order this on the web.

Thank you for your help
and... Meilleurs voeux de Bretagne

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Mark R
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Re: Islay trip 2011

Post by Mark R » Sat Jan 08, 2011 1:04 pm

Douglas Wilcox's new guidebook to the area (due date???) should cover many of your needs nicely.
Mark Rainsley
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MikeB
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Re: Islay trip 2011

Post by MikeB » Sat Jan 08, 2011 1:30 pm

Also have a look at the Scottish page of the Sea Trips section of the site (follow my signature link) where there's some earlier discussions and other generic information.

What sort of things are you wanting to know?

A great part of the world. Mike.

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Douglas Wilcox
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Re: Islay trip 2011

Post by Douglas Wilcox » Sat Jan 08, 2011 5:02 pm

Hello Ruland, it's a superb island, I visited 3 times last year.

The west coast is a serious proposition, you need to take swell height into account (magicseaweed) as well as tide times and wind. Tony and I finally got round the Rhinns of Islay section last summer (on my 8th visit and Tony had spent nearly 10 weeks on the island with his kayak). Others have been luckier and had a millpond but several parties got stuck on the west coast this year and faced long portages back to roads. On multiple trips to Islay I have found the tidal flows (you will be used to those!) to change nearly an hour earlier than predicted, in the charts and pilots, all round the island. On discussing this with the cox of the Islay lifeboat in August 2010, he said it was common knowledge among the local fishermen that all round the island the tidal flows turned 45 minutes earlier than the published times...

Admiralty tidal stream atlas Firth of Clyde and approaches NP222 shows Islay in good detail but take note of above earlier times for inshore streams.

Sound of Islay is a flat water blast, paddle with the tide.

You will discover what the big white buildings round the coast are. Names painted on the walls such as Ardbeg, Lagavullin make excellent navigational aides.

If you are anywhere near Port Ellen in the evening, the unpromising looking Indian restaurant is excellent.

Mull of Oa, there are races off all the three points on the S coast, you might be able to sneak inside a gap in the rocks at the middle one, no escape at the West one, the west going race goes straight offshore. For goodness sake don't go headland to headland from Oa to the Rhinns, you will miss the best bit, the west coast of Oa. There is a good campsite with showers at Kintra. You can resuply at Bowmore where there is also a swimming pool. Bowmore Harbour inn for accommodation and food. Showers and WiFi at Port Charlotte.

At the Rhinns, nipping inside Orsay and Frenchman's rocks might give the illusion of shelter, don't be fooled, all the swell concentrates in the channels, why do you think they have built a wave generator in there?

If you leave the Rhinns at slack water (a pretty sensible thing to do), the tide will be carrying you full belt north by the time you reach An Clachan where you turn east. A long reef there plus a fast west going eddy make for a fun place. We went wide to miss the broken water over the reef but we were then paddling straight into the eddy which was making 5-6km/hr. We hardly made any progress below Cnoc Uamh Nam Fear (great name) until we cut in to the slower moving clapotis under the cliffs....

I would advise taking a car (and a bike for shuttles if you have room) over to Islay. Then if conditions change you can go to a more sheltered location. Taxis in Port Charlotte, Port Ellen and Bowmore can also shuttle you back to your car but most are fully booked 8-9 and 3-4.30 for school runs in term time.

I hope to get the Pesda guide to the area published this year (I am writing it at the moment).

Here are some photos from Islay 2010.

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Port Askaig

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McArthur's Head, Sound of Islay

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An Claddach

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Claggain Bay

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Ardmore Point

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Ardbeg

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Dunyvaig Castle

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Texa

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Mull of Oa

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Mull of Oa

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Loch Indaal from Mull of Oa

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Soldier's Rock

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Kintra

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Laggan Bay

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Bowmore

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Paps of Jura from head of Loch Indaal.

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Frenchman's Rocks (you will like them!) from Portnahaven

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Portnahaven

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Slack water approaching Rubha na Faing

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Lossit Point

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Cnoc Uamh nam Fear

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Traigh Ton Mhor, first landing in 25km.

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Ardnave Point

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The bar at Loch Gruinart

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Loch Gruinart

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Rubha Bholsa

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Port an t-Sruthain

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Ruvaal.

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Sound of Islay.

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Jura side of the Sound of Islay.

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Ruvaal from Jura.

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Caol Isla.

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Port Askaig.

Have a great trip
Douglas

horis karloff
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Re: Islay trip 2011^

Post by horis karloff » Sat Jan 08, 2011 11:44 pm

A Most wonderful trip and pics, welldone. this is what life's all about. Who needs a Hayabusa or Porsche 911 when these kayaking memories never die.

Off to bed now everyone, it's late!

David A
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Re: Islay trip 2011^

Post by David A » Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:20 pm

Hi Ruland, Islay is a magical Island, and given fair weather, which May can bring, it should be a memorable trip. Leave plenty of time to explore this wonderful coastline. I paddled Islay late June/early July 2010, from Port Ellen in the south (anti clockwise) to Loch Gruinart in the north. As Mike B suggests, have a look at the Scottish page of the Sea Trips section, or click on my Blog below. You will have a fantastic time and I look forward to your report.

David A
(Big Wave Dave)

RULAND
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Re: Islay trip 2011^

Post by RULAND » Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:02 am

Thank you for your help, and for your photos Douglas.
We are really in a hurry to discover Islay.

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Mark R
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Re: Islay trip 2011

Post by Mark R » Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:48 pm

Mark R wrote:Douglas Wilcox's new guidebook to the area (due date???) should cover many of your needs nicely.
Douglas...any idea if this will be available before August???
Mark Rainsley
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