Wordless Wednesday : Taking a Hike!

Looking across at the Galtees

Galtee Mountains

Wordless Wednesday :Hiking by the Bay

Hiking on Sheep’s Head

Having a Social Hike with absolutely Blissful Views

For the first time in almost six months, I joined my friends in the Hillwalking Club yesterday for a hike in Sheep’s Head, near Bantry Bay in West Cork.

In the beginning..

In the beginning.

Sheep’s Head is a narrow peninsula in West Cork, with Bantry Bay on one side, and Dunmanus Bay on the other, and there are over 150km of walks making up the Sheep’s Head Way, and the scenery on all sides is amazing.

Yesterday’s walk was the Cahergal Loop, a distance of about 13 km, and as the ascent was only about 350m, I thought it would be a good place to start, after hibernating for the past few months, and seeing that the weather was being kind!    A lot of people had the same idea, and there were about 50 of us on the walk, it was good to meet up beforehand for a chat over coffee in the scenic village of Durrus , and then we drove a few miles to Kilcrohane to start the walk.   Boots on, walking sticks set, a few extra layers of clothing to start with, and we were off!

We turned off the road, and the first 100 metres of the climb was quite steep, and that is always quite a shock when the uphill starts before we even have time to get used to the walk, and to stretch the creaking legs!

Half way up the first hill and it’s time to start taking off that extra layer (and it’s an excuse to stop and get my breath back!).   There was a lot of climbing up rocks, then climbing down more rocks, and that is where the walking poles really come into their own, especially as the ground is still quite boggy from the winter rains.

Trudging along, avoiding the wet patches

Trudging along, avoiding the wet patches

About two hours into the walk, we stopped for lunch and a welcome sit down, unfortunately there are no cafes or ‘refugios’ in the hills in Ireland like there are in places like Italy, so everyone brings sandwiches or snacks in their rucksacks, and sometimes a welcome flask of tea or coffee.

We stopped at an old copper mine where there are still the ruins of the labourers cottages, and a few disused mine shafts.  Interestingly, this settlement by the mine was called Crimea, probably after some locals that may have fought in the Crimea War.



Soon after leaving Crimea, we came to a narrow trail over some cliffs, with a rope handrail that we had to hold on to, and if anyone was scared of heights, it was best not to look down!


Don't look down

Don’t look down

The Rope Handrail

The Rope Handrail

The walk was tough, took about four hours, but we had sunshine and blue skies all the way, and the views were out of this world.  Despite a few aches and pains, we all felt great at the end of the day when we could take off the muddy boots, get cleaned up and visit one of the local  pubs for a welcome drink and the  ‘roast of the day’.

Will I do another walk next weekend – most definitely!

Linked to Jo’s Monday Walk


We Stand and Watch the World Sail By.


My friend and I went for a Sunday stroll not too far from home, and on the way we passed an old ruin of a church, it’s called Templebreedy Church, or the Church of Bridget.   This church was built about 1779, and was used for about 150 years, and there had been a church on this site previously, for maybe another 100 years!

This was the view looking out one of the windows, sadly now without glass or window frame, and slowly returning to the earth.    In the foreground of the view is an old Celtic cross gravestone, probably at least 100 years old, and across the mouth of the harbour you can see Roches Point Lighthouse.   This lighthouse stands at the entrance to Cork Harbour, and a lighthouse was first established in this spot almost 200 years ago.

Just imagine, the people looking out this window would have seen many ships sailing to and from the Port of Cork and from Queenstown, later called Cobh.   Cobh was the last stop on the maiden voyage of the Titanic in 1912, before she set sail for New York, and was also the place where the survivors of the Lusitania were brought to in May 1915, when the ship was sunk by a German torpedo not far from here during the First World War.

Let’s hope there were happier times too for the watchers at the window, like the little boats below that were out for a sailing lesson in the shelter of the harbour this morning!

Learning to sail in the calm waters

Learning to sail in the calm waters



Wordless Wednesday : Beware of the Dragons!

Dragon at Worms,Germany

Dragon at Worms, Germany

WPC : Book Cover

light on the canal

Venice and It’s Charms

Who could resist reading about this wonderful city, and all it’s different views of water, canals, bridges, buildings, gondolas, and smiling gondoliers, and even a handsome film star or two from time to time!

Linked to Weekly Photo Challenge :  Cover Art

Water, Water Everywhere : Wordless Wednesday

Beautiful Venice

Beautiful Venice

Looking Through The Window

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