Galway to Kylemore loop

28 07 2012

We spent a relaxing evening in Galway and made plans for where we would travel the day after to make the most of the scenery on the west coast. We decided that a circular tour to Kylemore would be good and give us some more time to relax in Galway in the evening before the drive back to Dublin.

The rain set in the day after we arrived in Galway. Statistically speaking, it was bound to happen.

It didn’t deter us from setting off towards the Ross Errilly Friary where the first cache of the day was expected to be found. IT was an impressive ruin that we would no doubt have missed if we hadn’t been looking for the cache. One thing that was a little depressing yet interesting was seeing the vast number of derelict old buildings that there were all over the country. I suppose that it was too expensive to remove them when they fell out of use so they remain today as reminders of the past. Not too bad a thing I guess.

Ross Errilly Friary

Another reminder of the past was Famine Relief Project just outside the little township of Cong. The background information in the cache decription made great reading and the site was well worth visiting. I hope that there is more material available on internet. I will have to look.

The sometimes waterfilled “dry” Cong Canal.

The cache was hidden in a huge area of crushed rocks which some cachers found to be a problem. I was lucky. The coords were spot on for me.

From Cong we continued west and started climbing into the hills. We found a couple of caches on a minor road that had great views over Lough na Foohey. They were Ollamh (The Professor) and Lough na Foohey View. Even here there was a stark reminder from the period of famine in the form of a fenced off mass grave for children on the side of the hillside.

View over Lough na Foohey.

An ammo box cache overlooking Lough na Foohey.

We stopped for coffee in Lenane and when we came out of the cafe we found our miniature rental car dwarfed by the tractor and trailer parked next to it. Perhaps it was on it’s way to collect some peat?

I’m glad we didn’t meet that on a narrow road in the rain and at night.

Harvesting peak for heating. The smell of burning peat was quite persuasive at times.

We finally arrived at Kylemore Abbey. It’s amazing how places like this appear in a land of famine. The house has a colourful past.

Kylemore Abbey as seen from the cache of the same name

Once we had seen the house we headed off back to Galway stopping a couple of times along the way to Enjoy Lough Inagh and another cache overlooking Lough bo Finne. As you will have observed all the photos have the same dreary rainy appearance. That’s what the whole day was like.

View of Lough Inagh from the cache site

It was great to get back to Galway and treat ourselves to an unhealthy portion of fish ‘n’ chips.

After a day in the cold and rain it was good to eat unhealthy food. 🙂




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