I decided to start my recee of the Dingle Peninsula by first heading to Lough Slat and Lough Caum, but I got distracted on the way by a mountain peeking out of the low clouds and spent a little while at the side of the road getting a few shots of that, retreating to the car whenever the drizzle became a shower.
Having explored the two loughs I could see from the map that there was a rough road that went in a sort of loop to the north and ended up joining the road I’d already travelled, so I set off along it to see if it afforded a decent view. It was less of a road and more of a track and it was only just drivable. I crawled along, with dexterous use of the clutch for the particularly rough parts. I couldn’t really see anything of the high peaks around me as there were too many trees in the way (it is a forestry after all) and all I could think of was if I got the car stuck extricating myself was going to be very embarrasing, time consuming and costly. I kept climbing higher in the hope that the view might improve but came to a stop at a closed gate. Checking the map I could see that carrying on would take far too long, at the risk of wrecking the car, so I had to make something like a 10 point turn on the narrow track and didn’t breath out until I succesfully had the car pointing back the way I came.
Not having learnt my lesson I followed another track that took me off into nothing but more forestry. Not having room to turn around I decided to keep going since the map indicated that I would eventually join a road. However one of those big black and yellow barriers stopped me in my tracks. And when I got out of the car to try and work out how to turn the car around I could see the road I was meant to join hadn’t been used in years. There followed another 10 point turn.
I wound down my window as I passed a farmer who was driving a vehicle appropriate for the road and said “I’m not lost, I just wanted to see what was up there”. He replied “Ah, you wouldn’t get lost here, it’s only a small place anyway.”
After stopping to buy the most amazingly ridiculous lunch (roast dinner in a baguette, complete with mashed potato, carrots, peas and gravy; delicious) I headed north and west to find a beach I’d visited a few months previous. I drove down the wrong roads twice (one of which necessitated another 10 point turn) but found the right spot eventually. When I’d been there previously it had been dark but I could tell that there must be a spectacular view. However, although I could see more of it this time, the low clouds meant that I couldn’t see all of it and the bits that I could see were only visible part of the time.
I spent a good while at the beach, after which I headed south in the direction of Annascaul, taking a detour down a road I had marked out which didn’t offer up anything interesting, and ended up at a river mouth where I got out my camera but didn’t get anything I was happy with. By this point it was well into the afternoon and I was starting to get pretty tired (having set out from Galway at 5am) and decided that with a 3 hour drive to get home I should start heading. But on my way back I decided on a detour through Caherconree, which turned out to be quite spectacular.