Ireland day 0278. Sunday 03 July 2022- Portrane

Ireland day 0278. Sunday 03 July 2022- Portrane
Today’s summary A short walk from Donabate beach up to Portrane with the walking club.  Enjoyed the relatively warm weather and the chat.   Slow journey to / from because of the traffic from “Flavours of Fingal” show at Newbridge
Today’s weather Short shower first thing, otherwise dry and bright with plenty of sun in the afternoon.   Light westerly breeze.   About 18C
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):
Donabate to Portrane and back

I’m going to keep this blog brief for a number of reasons.   The main one being that today’s outing with the walking club took us from the Shoreline Hotel at Donabate beach north along the coast to Portrane – on the imaginatively named Donabate – Portrane Cliff Walk – and it’s a walk which I have done a couple of times before and have already written about.  So the main purpose of today wasn’t to explores omewhere new, rather to enjoy the decent weather, get a bit of exercise (although it was brief) and have a good chat.   As is often the case, the latter was probably the best ingredient of the day, and was as expansive and wide-ranging as ever.   But it does mean that there isn’t a lot new to write about from today’s stroll along this stretch of the coast.

I would just note that I did slightly encounter the downside of yesterday’s “Flavours of Fingal” show today.  I had to drive right past the entrance to the showground in order to get to the start of the walk on the beach, and there were massive traffic jams blocking up all the access routes.   That meant that I was late arriving at the start (so had to miss my coffee 🙁 ) and that it took much longer than expected to get home afterwards.

By the way, as you read this you need to avoid making the rookie-error of pronouncing “Portrane” as “Portrane”.   It’s actually pronounced “Port-rahn” – so please keep that in your head.

Another reason why I’m keeping it short today is because I have just finished a long chat with a good friend back in Scotland and I still haven’t had dinner.   So I’m getting hungry.

And the final reason I’m being brief is that as well as being hungry and bereft of new material to write about, I am annoyed with my laptop.   For reasons that I don’t understand at all, the keyboard and trackpad stopped working this evening so I had to keep prodding the touch-screen to try and coax it back into life.   I did the usual thing of switching it off and on a few times, then doing a “hard” boot (whatever that is) and nothing worked.   After a frustrating hour, I was on the verge of giving up but decided to make myself a cup of tea while I worked out what to do.   I turned it one one last time after having made the tea and needless to say, it worked perfectly.   I wasted an hour fiddling around, which is annoying enough on itself, but for the machine to repair itself without telling me what it it I think is downright discourteous.

But perhaps I was predisposed to be in an irritable frame of mind anyway, because earlier in the evening on the way home from the walk, I had an argument with a petrol pump.   I know I am going to sound like Victor Meldrew next – but what happened was that it was one of those new-fangled (note the grumpy-old-man use of language) ones where you have to put money in before it will actually dispense fuel.   And worse still, if you wanted to collect Tesco clubcard points (which was one of the main reasons for going to the Tesco petrol station in the first place)  – you have to scan the barcode off your card in first.

As it happens I don’t carry my clubcard round with me because I have it stored in an app on my phone.   So I got the electronic barcode up on my phone screen and waved it around in front of the “scan clubcard here” thing on the pump, and absolutely nothing happened.  I held it right way up, sideways, upside down, held it still, waved it, and the wretched pump simply wouldn’t recognise it.   So I abandoned the hope of getting my points and decided to get the fuel and try and reclaim them later.

This was when I ran into the second difficulty.   Because it was a pre-pay pump, you are supposed to put you credit card into the reader to pre-authorise it to dispense fuel.   Again, I have got used to relying on my ApplePay to make payments from my phone – and there was a contactless payment facility on the pump to show where you could use your Apple Pay.   But after a repeat performance waving my phone around, the pump and my ApplePay simply wouldn’t talk to each other.   So, for one of the first times ever in my life, I was defeated by the technology.   I left empty -handed (well not literally as a handful of petrol wouldn’t me much use and also something of a health hazard) and instead went to a nearby “normal” filling station which was actually I think a tenth of a cent per litre cheaper anyway.

My irritation with the obstinate pump was a bit relieved when I found the car only needed 30 litres to fill up – and I’d just clocked up 600km since last refuelling.   If my maths is correct that works out at about 56mpg (imperial), which at least helps ease the cost of living crisis a fraction.

Anyway I said I’d keep today’s report brief, so I will.   Time to make a late dinner now, then start planning for tomorrow.   See you later!


Today’s photos (click to enlarge)

Looking north east towards Lambay Island Heading north on the coast path.   You can just see the tower on the horizon, which is in the grounds of the (now closed) St Ita’s mental health hospital.   A change in Government policy saw many of the inmates being rehabilitated into society rather than being incarcerated, and the hospital closed in 2014.   Nowadays I believe the Health Service Executive have some facilities there.   The hospital was built in 1903 and at the time was the expensive building ever commissioned by the British Government in Ireland.   It was built on the estate of the former Portrane House, which used to belong to the Evans family.   The tower on the old estate was built in 1844 by Sophie Evans as a memorial to her late husband George, who was an MP for Dublin.
Kayakers testing the water today.   It actually didn’t look to hostile in the sea today Light breeze = calm seas.   It felt nice to be out of the wind for most of the day
Looking over the rocky headland to Lambay Island, on the horizon Tower Bay beach, at Portrane, with the namesake Martello behind on the headland
Most of the east coast near us in Malahide is pretty flat, so it’s nice to see some slightly more interesting rocky outcrops up here between Donabate and Portrane.   Although the cliffs are steadily collapsing, so the path keeps getting moved further and further inland
Interactive map

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

Total distance: 6177 m
Max elevation: 15 m
Min elevation: 2 m
Total climbing: 110 m
Total descent: -110 m
Total time: 02:29:21
Download file: Portrane Shore Stroll DWC compressed corrected.gpx

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