Ireland day 0246. Wednesday 01 June 2022- Ardgillan2

Ireland day 0246. Wednesday 01 June 2022- Ardgillan2
Today’s summary A beautiful day and Val had a day off work so we decided to go back to Ardgillan demesne so we could have a better look round together.   A lovely walk then came back for a Zoom lecture on Cornish Lithium in the evening
Today’s weather Bright and sunny all day but with a strong cool easterly wind.   No rain.  About 13C
Today’s overview location
(The blue mark shows the location of our route)
Close-up location
(The green 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):
Ardgillan with Val

Val has been either working or away in the UK for the last nine days, so today was our first opportunity to go exploring together since finishing the Wicklow Way.   And as luck would have it, when we got up and opened the curtains this morning, it turned out to be a beautiful day.   So given that Val had missed out on the Walking Club trip to Ardgillan last Sunday, and seeing as I had enjoyed it so much, I thought we could go back today, and have a proper look round together.

Once the morning’s chores – shopping, cleaning and so on – were out of the way (why are there so many chores by the way?; every morning seems to be full of them) we jumped in the trusty Yaris and set off for the short journey up the M1 to our destination for the day.   When we got to Ardgillan, the gardens and house were looking every bit as lovely as they were last Sunday – possibly even better, actually, as there were so few people around.   Although from the photos it looks boiling hot, actually there was a cold wind blowing straight off the Irish Sea which meant that at one point the down jackets had to go back on again.   T shirts and shorts were definitely marginal.

We thought we would have a good walk round the perimeter of the estate then find somewhere sheltered for our picnic lunch.   But within 10 minutes of arriving we had succumbed to the temptations of the café and treated ourselves to a cup of tea and a croissant (which we surreptitiously supplemented with our sandwiches).   Call us weak willed, but it’s been a busy few days, for Val especially, and we were quite glad to sit down in the sun and chill out for a few minutes and enjoy our leisurely lunch.   So, in a departure from the norm for both of us, we sat and relaxed and actually didn’t do anything at all until our consciences kicked into action and started goading us back onto our feet.

Actually, we knew there was still a lot to be seen and I particularly wanted to go over the bridge and down to the beach – because we had missed this section on Sunday as the tide was in.   So we dropped down to the bottom of the demesne, across the road via the Lady’s Steps and clambered down to the beach.   There’s a lovely little cove down there, well hidden from public view, with a rocky foreshore but sand at low tide.   We had a good look round, then walked a bit further north up the sand and boulders, and got the binoculars out to have a good look at the abundant and interesting wild life.   As well as the ubiquitous gulls, there were a couple of egrets and a heron pecking around in the seaweed.   Val also spotted grey wagtail which despite its name is mostly bright yellow.   A beautiful bird – too skittish to photograph – and probably the first one of its kind that I’d ever knowingly seen.

After all this leisurely meandering, it was going up to 5 o’clock so we made our way up to the demesne and then through the grounds up the hill back to the car park.   We needed to make tracks by this stage, as it happened, because I had a “Zoom” lecture this evening that I wanted to get back for.   So we jumped back in the car, zipped down the M1, and were in the flat by six.

It turned out to be a worthwhile trip because the lecture itself – on Cornish Lithium – was very interesting.   I’m not sure why I think I need to know about lithium production as I can’t see when I will ever put this technical knowledge to practical use.   But I think it’s important to keep up with trends, and to be aware of what’s going on in the world around you.   It’s one of those things that keeps life rich and interesting, and I fully expect still to be doing it when I’m a hundred.   Alarmingly that’s only thirty seven years away but I am determined to enjoy every single one of them.   Let’s get going!


Today’s photos (click to enlarge)

From the car park you look south east to the coast and the town of Skerries.   The bit of land with the houses on it that looks like an island isn’t actually an island (although confusingly it’s called Red Island) but is connected to the mainland by a tombolo – a bit like Howth, on a much smaller scale Val applying her botanical knowledge to the herbaceous border
And down on the beach, which you access via the Lady’s Stairs and bridge over the the coast road and railway Rockabill island with lighthouse – and this really is an island – about 10km / 6mi offshore.  It’s a distinctive landmark (or should that be seamark) and you can spot it easily from Paddy’s Hill in Robswall
Val features a lot in today’s photos, it seems.   Here she is, about to do some weather forecasting in with her dúlamán gaelach (you’ll have to look it up) The demesne is excellently laid out, maintained, and signposted.   There’s a huge playground for children, which looked so much fun I almost wanted to have a go.
We brought sandwiches but felt duty bound to make use of the catering facilities as well.   You are looking at a €9.90 snack here
Interactive map

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

Total distance: 4784 m
Max elevation: 96 m
Min elevation: 0 m
Total climbing: 151 m
Total descent: -151 m
Total time: 03:19:56
Download file: Ardgillan Revisited compressed corrected.gpx

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