Ireland day 0223. Monday 09 May 2022- Winter?

Ireland day 0223. Monday 09 May 2022- Winter?
Today’s summary Val was at work in the morning so I caught up on shopping and cleaning.  We went for cold blowy walk on Donabate beach after lunch.
Today’s weather Cool, overcast and occasionally rainy.   Moderate southerly wind, strong on coast.   About 13C
Today’s overview location
(The green mark shows the location of our route)
Close-up location
(The orange line shows where we walked)
(Click button below to download GPX of today’s walk as recorded, or see interactive map at bottom with elevations corrected):
Cold May on Donabate beach

I could hardly believe my eyes when I got out of bed and opened the curtains this morning. The last two days have been dry and sunny with temperatures up in the high teens.   So I had told myself that summer had arrived at last, and fully expected more of the same today.   Sadly this was not the case.   I could tell from the rain streaming down the windows that something was awry, and when I looked at my weather app my worst fears were confirmed.   A strong wind would blow all day, and the occasional squally rain showers and overcast skies would peg temperatures back to a measly 13C.   Winter was well and truly back!

On the positive side, the heaviest of the rain was forecast to fall this morning, while Val was on a training course at work.   So I used the time to do a bit of shopping and some cleaning, and to get the lunch ready (it was soup and some hot-cross buns that they were selling off cheap at SuperValu, by the way).   After we’d eaten, done the washing up and made some coffee, we hummed-and-hawed a bit about what to do next – all the while looking out of the window and hoping that the rain would go away.

Anyway it soon became clear that the rain wasn’t suddenly going to stop, so if we hung around much longer waiting for meteorological developments, we would probably be waiting all day.   So we dug out the rain gear from their winter repose, packed some snacks, and headed down to the garage to get in the car.   We had decided to go round the  Broadmeadow estuary to Donabate and out to the beach for a walk along the shoreline.  We hadn’t had a beach day for some time and fancied a day on the wide open expanses.  We thought the weather would have deterred most visitors and indeed it had.   We saw only two other people on the whole of the vast beach all afternoon.

But once we had parked, we sat in the car a bit longer, windscreen wiper wiping (the Yaris only has one, as you will recall), waiting for a break in the weather.   The break never came, so after a bit of disconsolate conferring, we decided to get the waterproofs on and head out anyway.   Our bold decision making was soon rewarded because the rain eased shortly afterwards and we stayed more-or-less dry for the whole of the rest of the afternoon.

We made it quite a brisk walk as it felt cold, aiming for the southern end of the peninsula, then round the end and back up past the golf course to make a looped outing.   The tide was about halfway in , meaning that there was still plenty of space to enjoy, and plenty of firm sand with just the right moisture content to make for brisk walking.   The two main east coast islands – Lambay and Ireland’s Eye – were both in evidence and fascinating as ever.

Lambay in particular I find strange as it keeps popping up in the near distance from the most peculiar vantage points.   One particular good viewpoint is near the airport runway, from the upper deck of the 102 bus.   It looms large on the horizon, just where you think it shouldn’t be.   And the sight of Ireland’s Eye reminded me that soon, boat trips offering the opportunity to land on the island will soon be available – if they aren’t already.   We had just missed out on going on the last one before they closed for the winter, last October, and were determined not to miss out this year.   I guess it will depend on the weather and on the seabird nesting season.   I will have to do some research.

After some refreshments in the shelter of the dunes, we headed back up the coast, beachcombing along the tide-line on the look out for anything interesting that might have washed up (Val did find a €2 piece, which was a bit of a surprise, and the closest we got to pirate treasure today).    Once back in the dry refuge of the car, we returned to the mundane world of the supermarket to pick up some bits for dinner in Donabate, then headed on back to the flat to try and warm up.

So we certainly had a very invigorating day and it was definitely a timely reminder that winter isn’t far away, even in May, and we can’t afford to drop our defences too far for a few more weeks.   And then of course Autumn will be looming!


Today’s photos (click to enlarge)

The Donabate Martello Tower.   It’s got so much potential, I can’t believe it is just being left there to crumble away Large oyster shell washed up on the beach.  No pearls in sight, unfortunately
Another yellow cabbagey-plant growing in the dunes.   It’s not sea beet (which in an earlier blog I think I mistakenly described as a cruciferous plant – it isn’t) and it’s not sea kale, but I’m not exactly sure what it actually is.   I will have to go back with my book one day. Here’s Val trying to fly across the narrow sea channel from the south end of the Donabate peninsula to Malahide.   Definitely safer than swimming, though – the straits are deadly
I am seriously thinking of getting the bags under my eyes done.   Or maybe one of those stick-on facelifts that people tell me about.   Would take years off me, I’m sure To infinity – and beyond!   Well that’s what it looks like, but it’s only to the golf course, and not much beyond.   This is actually the salt marsh, from our sheltered picnic spot in the lee of the hooked end of Donabate peninsula
Here we are at the top of Donabate beach, with Lambay island behind.   We’re beginning to look a bit weatherbeaten now!
Interactive map

(Elevations corrected at  GPS Visualizer: Assign DEM elevation data to coordinates )

Total distance: 8119 m
Max elevation: 7 m
Min elevation: -1 m
Total climbing: 76 m
Total descent: -72 m
Total time: 02:31:26
Download file: Donabate Beach cold may walk corrected.gpx

You can read earlier and later days’ blogs below

Previous day’s blog
Next day’s blog
Ireland home page