Join for FREE
It only takes a minute!
Magnifying the passion for nature. Zeiss Victory Harpia 95. New!

Welcome to BirdForum.
BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE! You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old Friday 23rd July 2010, 11:16   #1
Pariah
Stealth Birder
 
Pariah's Avatar

 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Helsinki
Posts: 2,800
Galley Head - West Cork's most accessible Seawatching location

Galley head is located along the coastal route between Clonakilty and Rosscarberry.

It is located about 65km from Cork City Centre and has a superb track record for seawatching, producing birds such as Black Browed albatross, Fea’s petrel, Wilson’s Petrel, Little Shearwater, Long tailed skua in the past (rare in Cork) and most recently Madeiran Petrel.

It is easiest reached by following signs for Ardfield from Clonakilty, however once beyond ardfield, sign-age is poor. Keep going straight out of Ardfield until you come to a small beach (Red Strand). This beach is good for gulls on occasion and is worth a check. Carry on past the beach and take the first left turn. Carry on straight for a few kilometres until you reach galley head’s tip. In previous years you could travel all the way out to the lighthouse compound. This is now gated off and the easiest parking spot is some 400 meters back along the headland, in an obvious turning lay-by adjacent to the ruins of an old fort.
Walk up along the road through the old fort walls, into the lighthouse compound and climb over the wall. There is a grassy track which descends down to your left (east). This leads down to a small grassy hollow which provides good shelter.

http://marinas.com/view/lighthouse/7...Deide_headland

The lighthouse cottages are actually available for rent here.

http://www.irishlandmark.com/Propert...x?propertyid=3

They are quite expensive (1,110 a week in season), however they sleep a good many people and a large group intent on plugging galley and the nearby headlands during seawatching season and autumn could do a lot worse.
Though its best to bear in mind that Galley would be unlikely to get a whole week of good conditions for the avid sea-watcher (the Bridges is more suited to a long extended stay)

Seawatching is typically best in early morning and late evening, as the sun faces you head on during mid-day, however depending on the conditions, the birds may move all day long.
Most birders look slightly east from the hollow to pick up oncoming shearwaters. However I find that for the petrels, it’s easiest to pick them up looking directly south, when they are visible for longer periods against wave troughs.
Nearby large towns include both Clonakilty and Rosscarberry, both of which would have facilities such as a selection or restaurants and pubs and various hotels and bed and breakfasts. These would be no more than 20 minutes or so from Galley.
There are smaller villages nearby, such as Rathbarry and Ardfield, which do have some bed and breakfasts around. But you will be hard pushed to find other amenities in the area.

The most reasonable bed and breakfast, just 5-10 minutes from the head, is Kilkerran House. (30-40 Euro) however others in the area can charge 50-60 Euro.
There are hostels in Clonakilty (the larger of the two towns), but not in Rosscarberry.

West cork has become quite a gourmet food destination over the past 10 years and many restaurants in the area offer excellent fare for an evening meal.

An Sugan pub in Clonakilty has some amazing seafood, though you will pay for it.
http://www.ansugan.com/.

The Incheydoney hotel is also good for food.

Otherwise, if you are intent on doing things on the cheap there are no shortage of take-away joints.

The trick with Galley is to watch the weather. If you are in the area and a good South westerly with squalls or drizzle is coming in it is the place to be. Even then, however, it can be hit and miss. And there are times when the sea just seems devoid of birds. But when its good...it is very very good.

Owen
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Galley1.jpg
Views:	229
Size:	81.0 KB
ID:	273985  Click image for larger version

Name:	Galley 2.jpg
Views:	199
Size:	97.5 KB
ID:	273987  
__________________
My new blog http://helhathnobirdies.blogspot.fi
Twitter - https://twitter.com/birdingstandard
Check out Robert Vaughan's Artwork at Irishbirdart
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Irish...68230526570236

Last edited by Pariah : Friday 23rd July 2010 at 11:38.
Pariah is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Friday 23rd July 2010, 14:17   #2
Rob Smallwood
Registered User
 
Rob Smallwood's Avatar

 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Greater Manchester
Posts: 3,316
Great article - really useful - so many thanks.
__________________
Rob
"Thirty years ago I knew nothing about birding. Today I know enough to know that I know very little"
Rob Smallwood is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2010 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Advertisement
Reply


Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
4 I.D's please. Location Moore (north west) David Smith Bird Identification Q&A 3 Sunday 7th October 2007 12:21
Camera and Bins accessible at the same time? CCRII Cameras And Photography 4 Thursday 4th October 2007 06:55
Strumble Head - West Wales Colin Sea Watch 9 Wednesday 10th August 2005 16:48



Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Help support BirdForum

Page generated in 0.12455392 seconds with 15 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 15:01.