Sunday, October 26, 2008

2008 Ireland Trip -7 Sep 08, Part III

The afternoon yielded better weather for us as the sun came out for a while. The effect of the late afternoon light on the landscape was pretty spectacular with the greens turning more brilliant and the contrasting water becoming an azure jewel against and emerald setting.

I'll pass on this boat ride, thanks.

I love the patchwork quilt effect of the pastures on that hill across the bay.

This is my all time favorite photo of the trip.

Mount Brandon

My Woodcentral hat sighting pic with Mount Brandon

Jimmy Bruic is the owner of Coill An Roís, our B&B for the Dingle Peninsula portion of our trip. Jimmy makes the BEST! breakfast of all our B&B stays. He's also very helpful, including coming out to the lane at night to guide us to the B&B. It was so dark out there and the GPS unit I rented didn't have that part of the peninsula mapped, so it was very nice of Jimmy to come out and guide us to the B&B. We had some lovely chats while we stayed there, too.

Another look at Mount Brandon in the late afternoon sun.

Jimmy, taking a cell phone call. That's the B&B to the left.

The Dingle Peninsula was one of my favorite places to visit in Ireland.

Michael was worn out from the sight-seeing of the day and decided to take a nap. I went for a walk to look for birds while he slept.

The hedge rows are full of fuschias. These aren't native, but they've certainly taken over the roadsides.

Everyone seems to adore them, so I guess they're a welcome invasive species.

No hummingbirds for pollination, but the bees were all over them.

There are a lot of walking paths all over Ireland. This one was pretty muddy in spots, but it was great for birding.

Mount Brandon

More of the Dingle Peninsula

Stone Chat

Robin (he's not one-legged, but is warming his foot)

More of the Dingle Peninsula - you can see the effect of glaciation here, too.

Grey wagtails

Notice the U-shaped valley on the hillside there? That's another tell tale sign of glaciation.

We had dinner here - on the northwestern edge of the peninsula

The sunset was stunning

Here's the Clifftop restaurant. I had Dingle Bay prawns here, and they were super delicious. I want some more!

The interior of the house

We drove over to Dingle for the evening to have a Guinness and to hear some music. First, though, I couldn't resist taking pictures of the marina. I didn't have a tripod so I had to rest my camera on a rock for these long exposures.

The water was mirror calm - a beautiful setting for this long exposure image.

I couldn't resist doing some light painting here and....


We stopped here first

We were a bit late for getting a good seat, but Michael invited us to sit with some people that already had a table.

We were front and center next to the band.

Guinness, music and good craic - perfect for Ireland.

We stopped in to a pub down the street to catch a bit of a sessiun - a mix of local talent and some Americans. The guy playing Uillean pipes is a local. He's on one of the recordings I have, but I don't have his name at the moment.

Another table-top pic. We sure had a great day on the Dingle Peninsula, and a lovely evening to top it off.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

2008 Ireland Trip -7 Sep 08, Part II

The Dingle Peninsula has a lot of interesting places to visit, including some bronze-age sites such as Dunbeg Fort. It's pretty easy to find since it's right on the main road that circumnavigates the peninsula.

The fort sits atop a cliff overlooking Dingle Bay and is surrounded by farms full of range maggots.

This friendly horse was in a pasture adjacent to the path that led to the site. Michael pulled some long grass along the path to feed to it and so it followed us for a while along the path.

The donkey wasn't quite as friendly.

Here's some info about the fort.

The site has a series of barriers ringing the fort, some of which have fallen into the ocean.

This is the major part of the fort that has been excavated.

A view of the barriers

It doesn't look very big, but we're only seeing part of what has been excavated here.

Barrier rings surrounding the fort.

Part of the cliff has eroded away and so the ring goes right to the edge.

Nice view, eh?

Storage and hiding spaces underground near the main hut.

The inhabitants must have been pretty short.

I'll not comment on the rest of these pics, just scroll along to see some of the site.

This is a stone chat. They like to sit on top of fence posts and rocks where they can keep an eye on their territory.

Ok, I'm sorry I called you a range maggot.

Not far from Dunbeg Fort is one of the accessible bee hive hut sites. These are from the bronze age, also.

Life must have been pretty tough back in that age.

I don't have a lot of commentary, but I enjoyed exploring this place.

A view from the inside.


Skellig Michael? This view is to the south of the Dingle Peninsula

More range maggots

We proceeded west to the tip of the peninsula after visiting the bee hive huts. This image gives a sense of what the road is like there.

There is a series of islands off the tip of the western edge of the peninsula.

A memorial at the western tip of the peninsula.

The islands would be fun to explore for a birding trip.

More views of the farmland that covers the Dingle Peninsula.

This is just past the tip, looking north.

It's a beautiful landscape.

We stopped at a small town pub for a late lunch and were there just in time to catch some of the hurling match. It was the big match between Killarney and Wexford, I think.

Hurling is an interesting sport, but I can't begin to explain it, so please check out the link to learn more. It was fun to watch.

Here's a random shot of the pub where we were eating lunch and watching the match.