Antipole cruises

Baltimore and the islands


On Wednesday we had a fantastic day on Cape Clear Island – the most south western point of Ireland, off which lies the infamous Fastnet Rock and its lighthouse.  Cape Clear Island is simply stunning, especially on a warm sunny day.  We walked around much of it on high paths above the cliffs looking down on the sea below.  The island’s roads are incredibly steep – nothing less than 1 in 4 here.  There are several hostels on the islands where young people come to learn the Gaelic language, which is widely spoken.

Click on the following panorama photo to see a stunning vista of where Antipole lay at anchor deep in the South Harbour.  Note the mountains in the distance, including the coming Mizen Head in the centre distance.


In the evening we had a very fast sail to the large Baltimore Harbour, where we anchored off Sherkin Island, where we also had a trip ashore, but, for us, it did not match up to Cape Clear.

On Friday we made a short visit to Baltimore town for water and stores.  Now back in the sixteenth century, the O’Driscoll clan, that dominated this area, appropriated a Portuguese ship bound for Waterford laden with goodies.  Waterford retaliated by raiding and sacking Baltimore.  We learnt that we had arrived on the day these events are still commemorated with pirate raids, and the pontoon was full with boats readying for the evening’s action. However, impending gales, which would blow onto the pontoon that night, led to cancellation of the event.  We wondered whether such inconveniences delayed the original raids.

Mindful of the coming weather we left Baltimore harbour and ran some six miles  up the River Ilen to a place called Old Court and tucked ourselves round a bend to shelter from the weekend’s gales.  On Sunday afternoon the wind eased and the rain ceased, so we dinghied ashore to explore and walked four miles into the town of Skibbereen.  This claims to be the cosmopolitan capital of West Cork.  We did find a coffee shop open on a Sunday afternoon, so maybe it is so.

On Monday we came down river and had a gentle sail to Schull (pronounced as skull in English), which lies in a large harbour bay.  We had planned to do laundry here, but it turns out the facility closed some years ago, so that will have to wait.  Outside Schull harbour the bay contains some hundred islands (and many more rocks), including the three Calf islands.  There is a large youth sail training centre here in Schull and in August there is a junior version of the UK’s Cowes Week, known by all as Calves Week.

From here we will be heading round Mizen Head and onto the Irish west coast proper.

love to all
Tony & Ynskje

PS This site now contains a latest position page within the Cruise Logs tab, through which you can view our latest position recorded by, which will be more up-to-date than the cruise track log.

One thought on “Baltimore and the islands

  1. Nicky

    We thought of you over the weekend in the gales. Glad you found some shelter. Looks like you are visiting some remote and beautiful places. Do hope the Atlantic ocean and winds are kind to you as you make your way up the coast – not quite the same as the inland seas of the Netherlands!

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