Sunday, March 6, 2011
Ireland Day 3
I'm currently sitting in the lobby of the hotel waiting for a few pictures to upload. I'm wishing the hotel room had wifi so I could just set it up to upload while I go do something else. Hopefully the next hotel, I will be so fortunate.
I'm sore from today. I probably would have been sore from the horseback ride yesterday but I decided to add to it by hiking up to Ireland's highest point. Corran Tuathail is one of the Macgillycuddy Reeks in County Kerry. I had wanted to climb it last time I was in Ireland, but there wasn't enough time. This time I made sure to plan enough time. It was well worth it and I couldn't have asked for better weather for the climb today. I have to admit, about half way up the section known as the Devil's Ladder, I strongly considered turning back. Going up the Ladder was fine, but knowing I had to come back down had me a bit worried. It was a very steep, skree filled rock scramble section of the climb. I was warned by other hikers that it was dangerous. Luckily I ran into some other hikers that showed me another route that I could come down that would be much easier. I decided to move on since I really wanted to say I stood on top of Ireland.
The cross at the summit was a very welcome sight. I enjoyed taking a few minutes to look for a geocache at the top and explaining to some locals what my Sounders scarf was for. They were quick to ask if I had gotten to see David Beckham play when I said it was for my favorite MLS team. I didn't tell them what a prima donna I had thought he was, but just that he was fun to watch on the field. Walking down from the summit I became known as "The American" and word traveled quickly that people (including the other American making the climb today) needed to talk to me. I enjoyed the fact that hikers earlier had told me not to take the "Heavenly Gate" route as it was aptly named as a trip to Heaven was found more easily on that route - later to have a nice older Irishman tell me that I should take that route. I thought he had enjoyed talking to me up until he told me that. :) The "easier" route down was still steep and narrow, but every bit of it was worth it.
Now I'm hungry.