Saturday, 20 June 2015

Dingle Way - day 7: Cloghane to Scraggane

Our room had a view over the estuary and when we awoke the tide was very much on the wane. There was more sand than water visible across to the far side of what had been water the previous night. The sky was gray but the forecast was predicting a fine day.

After another pleasant and filling breakfast we headed off for what was to be a day of much beach walking. Was there a beach in Ireland that we did not walk along, apart from Inch beach which we somehow missed?

From Cloghane we followed a number of roads before arriving at the beach at Fermoyle.

Sue walking along one of the pleasant contry roads ont the way to Fermoyle
There were some good views across to the mountains, too, some of which were shrouded in cloud.

One thing that had struck during the walk was the use of blue rope and twine. It appeared everywhere and was the dominant colour by far. If Bunnings was evident in ireland I would have thought that they only offered one coloured twine and string across their stores. It almost seemed like a conspiracy. How do you get everyone to use a particular colour rope for almost everything they do?

Blue twine was used to hold gates shut and amost every other thing that twine would normally be used for. Here is an example of the use of blue twine.

Just before the carpark at Fermoyle there was a humped back bridge.

Jen heading over the humped back bridge leading to the carpark at Fermoyle

Sue at the start of the long beach walk from Fermoyle to Fahamore

From Fermoyle it was some 12km along the beach. Fortuantely, much of the same was firm otherwise this section would have been very unpleasant.

Indications were that there would be a string of endlessly breaking thunderous waves crashing ashore along the strip of beach. Oops, someone didn't tell the waves although there was some white capped waves from time to time. They still were pretty small fry.

The sand was wide although the incoming tide kept eating away at the strip of sand between us and the sand dunes. We managed to complete the section before the incoming tide was an issue. There were a number of streams that needed to be crossed, too. Fortunately we got across without getting our boots filled with water. That could wait for another day!

Sue approaching one of the creeks running across the sand

Walking along the long expanse of the beach

The beach was edged by sand dunes

We had seen hoof prints in the sand and near the end of the beach walk a number of horses were riden along the sand.

A couple of the horses we encountered on the beach
There were great views to be seen but mostly these were behind us.

Once off the beach we headed along the road to the small settlement of Fahamore where we stopped for a coffee in Spillane's Pub. It was good to sit down and the coffee really was a pick me up.

By the time we reached Fahamore we had covered about 16km. According to our notes this should have been a 21km day. On leaving Spillane's we continued on our merry way following the directions in our guide.

The trail headed up to a point on the tip of the peninsula before turing back towards Castlegregory. We did visit the ruins of an ancient church but did not find the gravesite that dated from 600AD.

This area was home to many horses and we delighted in seeing some lovely animals as we passed by their paddocks.

The local fishing fleet was in and bobbing on the light waves.

After some more beachwalking we got concerned that we did not seem to be anywhere near what should have been our stopping point. Out came the ordanance maps, the guide was pored over as was the information about the location of our B&B. Our conclusion was that nothing lined up. Once again the distances quote were way off the mark. The references did not match the ordinance maps we have been given. Named landmarks were not sign posted locally. All in all we were some 5km beyond where our B&B was - and we needed to somehow backtrack without stomping across loose sand.

Approaching a local it was confirmed that we could get across to the main road with a short backtrack. Roadwalking seemed a much better option than walking over more sand.

When we reached Spillane's we were able to confirm that we should have left the Way right outside their door. Why the directions did not say something like ... "When you reach Spillane's Pub continue along the road rather than turning right as indicated by the waymarker".

By the time we reached our B&B we were all weary and very pleased to have finally made it.

All up we walked over 25km when, by what we discovered, it should have been around 18km.

We were not happy vegemites!

After dinner Trevor and I went out to see if we could capture the sunset. There had been very little cloud until well into the evening when, unfortubnately, a bank of cloud came through.

We stayed at the Hharbour House B&B in Scraggane. The wifi was only available in restricted areas and was very unreliable. At night the door between the the accommodation and the reception area was locked meaning that the area with the best wifi reception could not be reached.

The passageway had floating boards that made a horrible ruckous whenever anyone walked along the passage.

This was the worst of all the places at which we stayed during our walk and isn't one that I would recommend.

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