Steep Undulations

31 05 2013

Today was as close to a perfect cycling holiday as you can get!

We started in Doolin. I think Doolin must be a party town, we were the first down for breakfast and did not see a single other guest until we were leaving at about 9:30 am.

It was warm enough that for the first time in  several days we did not wear our jackets.  We did not get lost and followed the map perfectly. We did not fall off the bike (though we haven’t done that for several days and scrapes are healing well). We are developing climbing legs and managed to negotiate the scary downhills, we are grateful for the disc brakes on our bike! We arrived at the Kinvarra Guesthouse in good time and even spent an hour just reading our books.image

There was, however, one hill we could not cycle up and ended up walking for what felt like 2 km. It was steep enough and long enough that we stopped for for a rest more than once on our way up! Our tour person described these as steep undulations. Later we were told at the Burren Perfumery, that lots of people are unsuccessful at cycling up that hill and even cars have trouble with it!

Pictures never do justice, but this hill was steep!

Pictures never do justice, but this hill was steep!

At one point we had a choice to to make. Option 1 took us past a perfumery, option 2 past a ruined abbey. This country is full of ruins, we’ve seen several, so opted for the perfumery. So glad we did! As we parking the bike, the owner (?) came across the yard and said, “Cyclists, we love to see cyclists!” Then he noticed our bike, and really wanted to talk. We felt so welcome!

Meeting the Moss Man at the Burren Perfumery.

Meeting the Moss Man at the Burren Perfumery.

We took a tour of their garden, had some soup and brown soda bread, and tea of course! In their tea room and bought a pot of lip balm from the shop. At €9 or $13 it’s the most expensive lip balm I’ve ever used but it certainly tastes good!

For supper we ate more food than we should have, but with a personal greeting from the manager who was watching out for the Canadians, and traditional Irish music played by 5 musicians right beside our table, how could we leave?

Flowers growing from a castle wall.

Flowers growing from a castle wall.




4 responses

1 06 2013

I really enjoy this blog! Sounds like you had a great day. Any sunshine yet?

1 06 2013

Some sunshine, but it’s been so cold we’ve always worn long sleeves and pants. When you only use sunscreen on your face, it lasts a long time!

1 06 2013

This sounds like a perfect day J. I’m looking forward to seeing the Burren and hearing how you managed it. And how was the smell at the perfumerie?

2 06 2013

The garden smelled like a garden, you really only smelled the herbs if you touched them.

Because the Burren is protected, they buy their essential oils. You really only smelled the items you sampled– some were very nice, some were not.

This place would make a nice side trip for the group….

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