An ambition almost achieved

P1000601The anchorage in the Blaskets between Inishvickilane and Inishabro has to be one of our all time favourites. It is the most Westerly anchorage in Europe , stuck out there in the Atlantic off the SW point of Ireland and in truth it is somewhat marginal, exposed as it is to any East in the wind and only protected from the Atlantic swell by the adjacent points of the two islands, with a big gap between the two .

DSC_0135On the other hand it is a magnificent setting , surrounded at this time of year by puffins and other auks . Whatever shelter it does supply has been eagerly adopted by our friends the seals to bring up their pups and on at least one occasion in the past dolphins have come right into the Sound and played near our anchored boat. In short it is a magical place.





DSC_0177Landing on Inishvickilane is straightforward – there is even a pier of sorts which you can reach at high tide , but mostly you have to land on a rocky beach and hope you don’t get swamped too badly before pulling the dinghy up the rocks . Inishabro across the sound however can allegedly only be entered through a cave , which sounds so impossibly romantic that I have wanted to try it ever since we first came here in 1994 in Polly.

Well , if ever we were to do it , now was the time as even though the gradient breeze was in the NE, the wind was so gentle and the sea so flat it is unlikely we will ever get a better opportunity.

The cave entrance was fairly difficult to find as it faced along the cliff, but once identified it appeared as a tall thin keyhole which we squeezed through with inches to spare either side of the dinghy.

IMGP0035 Once inside we were dumped unceremoniously on the rocks by a surge out of all proportion to the sea outside to reveal one sleeping seal and an easy scramble to the cliffs above.


P1000606The trouble was that the climb was through a crowded kittiwake and fulmar nesting site , and the rim of the collapsed roof housed a cormorant colony The gulls started to mob and spray us cheered on by the cormorants braying like a cross between football hooligans and agitated donkeys .




We can take a hint so abandoned our climb and left Inishabro in peace again .

Perhaps we will return after the breeding season!

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