Small Isles and Arisaig

Introduction

Times of high water

Loch Moidart: High water is 22 minutes after high water at Oban

Loch nan Ceall: High water is 30 minutes after high water at Oban

Mallaig: High water is 30 minutes after high water at Oban

Eigg: High water is 22 minutes after high water at Oban

Sound of Arisaig: High water is 22 minutes after high water at Oban

Kinloch, Rum: High water is 50 minutes before high water at Ullapool

Canna: High water is 50 minutes before high water at Ullapool

Tidal streams

Ardnamurchan Point to Rubh Arisaig: In this area, which includes the north coast of Ardnamurchan and the Sound of Arisaig, the streams are weak.

East coat of Eigg: The north going stream begins at 5 hours and 30 minutes before high water at Oban. The south going stream begins at 1 hours after high water at Oban. The flow reaches a speed of 4 knots at springs.

Entrances to Loch Moidart: In the North and South Channels either side of Eilean Shona: The east going stream begins at 5 hours and 30 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The west going stream begins at 50 minutes before high water at Ullapool. The flow reaches a speed of 2 knots at springs. The streams can be strong and create steep waves at the entrances when wind opposes the out-going tide.

Loch nan Ceall entrance: The east north-east going stream begins at 5 hours and 45 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The west south-west going stream begins at 50 minutes before high water at Ullapool. The flow reaches a speed of 2 knots at springs. The stream is especially strong 1.5 hours either side of low water when the tide runs between sandbanks which cover at other times.

Sound of Eigg: The south south-east going stream begins at 1 hours after high water at Oban. The north north-west going stream begins at 5 hours and 30 minutes before high water at Oban. The flow reaches a speed of 3 knots at springs.

West side of Muck: The north going stream begins at 5 hours and 30 minutes before high water at Oban. The south going stream begins at 1 hours after high water at Oban. The flow reaches a speed of 4 knots at springs.

Between Canna and Humla: The south south-east going stream begins at 10 minutes before high water at Ullapool. The north north-west going stream begins at 5 hours and 50 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The flow reaches a speed of 2.5 knots at springs. The rate reaches 4 knots near Belle and Jemima Rocks, about half way across and is 3-4 knots between Canna and these rocks. Heavy overfalls can occur in this area.

Halfway between Soay and Rum: The south-east going stream begins at 2 hours and 50 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The north-west going stream begins at 3 hours and 10 minutes before high water at Ullapool. The south-east going stream reaches a speed of 0.5 knots at springs. The north-west going stream reaches a speed of 0.6 knots at springs.

Between Eigg and the Mainland: The north north-east going stream begins at 5 hours and 30 minutes before high water at Oban. The south south-west going stream begins at 1 hours after high water at Oban. The flow reaches a speed of 1 knots at springs. Streams are much stronger close to Eigg.

West of Luinga Bheag: Eddies on the east side fo the channel between the Mainland and Eigg cause the streams to set differently 1 mile west of Luinga Beag: The north going stream begins at 5 hours and 20 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The south going stream begins at 20 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The streams are weak close to the coast.

Between Eilean Ighe and Mallaig: The streams are weak near the coast.

Sound of Arisaig: The streams are weak and barely noticeable. The in-going stream begins 5 hours and 30 minutes after high water at Ullapool, the out-going stream starting 50 minutes before high water at Ullapool.

Loch Ailort entrance: The east going stream begins at 5 hours and 30 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The west going stream begins at 50 minutes before high water at Ullapool. The flow reaches a speed of 2.5 knots at springs. These streams can be strong in the narrow channels and cause breaking waves in wind against tide conditions. The streams are weak within the Loch.

South west coast of Rum: The south-east going stream begins at 10 minutes before high water at Ullapool. The north-west going stream begins at 5 hours and 50 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The flow reaches a speed of 3 knots at springs.

Sound of Rum: The north-east going stream begins at 5 hours and 30 minutes before high water at Oban. The south-west going stream begins at 1 hours after high water at Oban. The flow reaches a speed of 1.5 knots at springs. At the north end of Eigg, these streams set north-west and south-east respectively.

Sound of Canna: The north-east going stream begins at 5 hours and 30 minutes before high water at Oban. The south-west going stream begins at 1 hours after high water at Oban. The flow reaches a speed of 1.5 knots at springs.

Western point of Rum: The tide flows south south-east and north north-west. The flow reaches a speed of 3 knots at springs.

Off Sanday: The tide flows north north-east and south south-west. The flow reaches a speed of 4 knots at springs.

Narrows at entrance to Kentra Bay: The tide flows strongly through the narrows.

East coast of Muck: The north going stream begins at 5 hours and 30 minutes before high water at Oban. The south going stream begins at 1 hours after high water at Oban. The flow reaches a speed of 4 knots at springs.

South end of Rum: [tide]The north-going stream splits around the south point of Rum. Presumably, the south-going tide joins around this point.

West tip of Canna, Garrisdale Point: The north going stream begins at 5 hours and 15 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The south going stream begins at 15 minutes after high water at Ullapool. The flow reaches a speed of 2.5 knots at springs.

Notes

Access/Egress

Mallaig: (NM 677 969) g Slipway at back of harbour, likely slippery with seaweed at low water. Parking nearby all along the harbour front, although this may well become busy - best to arrive early. Large public car park 300 m to the west by the A road.

Morar Beach: (NM 675 922) g Car park with 50m carry down to the beach. There is a shorter carry from roadside parking a few hundred metres to the east.

Morar upstream of bridge: (NM 680 920) g Small layby on road, near which a track leads down to the water. May be preferable at low water.

Traigh: (NM 656 904) g Car park, with options to launch in several directions.

Rhue: (NM 627 851) g Small parking area at the end of the public road, launch across a rocky beach. There is also a small parking area where the road turns south, 400m north of here.

Ardtoe: (NM 628 708) g Ramp onto beach. Small car park nearby which charges a small fee.

Artisaig: (NM 659 864) g Parking area near the Spar. At low tide, it may be easier to drop boats on the ferry pier that has been built out into the bay - likely more paring options at the east end of this pier near the Arasaig Sea Kayak Centre.

Cuildarrich: (NM 725 845) g Gravel layby off the road with track down to a launching place. There are likely other options nearby, but only a few places to leave a car. There is a layby uphill to the west.

Alisary: (NM 738 790) g Small lay-by near the foreshore. There are alternative lay-bys to the north (slightly longer carry, less good at low water) and the south (no easy access to water, but possible to leave a car)

Inverailort: (NM 759 814) g Lay-by next to a slipway.

Glenuig: (NM 674 776) g Slipway next to lay-by.

Castle Tioran: (NM 664 720) g Space to leave a few cars at the end of the road, may be a long carry at low tide.

Portuairk: (NM 440 681) g Drop boats at a turning area at the end of the road. There may be a long walk to the sea at low tide. Parking area 350 m up the road to the south.

Suggested trips

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