Ireland day 0639. Thursday 29 June 2023- Samphire *

Ireland day 0639. Thursday 29 June 2023- Samphire
Today’s summary Dropped Val off at the airport for an early morning flight to London after problems opening the Casino main gate because of a power cut.   Walked down the coast to Howth in the afternoon
Today’s weather Dry and sunny in the morning and later in the evening.   Overcast all afternoon but no rain.   Moderate westerly wind.   Appx 18C
Today’s overview location
(The red mark shows the location of my route)
Close-up location
(The red line shows where I walked)
(Click button below to download GPX of today’s walk as recorded, or see interactive map at bottom with elevations corrected):
Samphire walk to Howth

(Summary blog only.   Last full blog was Day 0368).

The day almost started disastrously.

Val had an early flight back to London this morning – she’s over there for a few days on family business; I will be joining her at the weekend.   So we got up early, fired up the trusty Yaris, and were away by 5am.

Except that we weren’t – as at that moment there was a power cut which seems to have affected the whole of Malahide, and which had the particular effect of locking the gates to the drive of the Casino groundsshut.   So we couldn’t get out – and there is no mechanical over-ride (a serious safety issue, actually, which we will take up with the management company).   Anyway the long and short of it was we couldn’t get to the airport and all the taxi firms which might have been able to collect Val (assuming she could climb over the gate) were fully booked.

We were running out of options as fast as the time to departure was running out but then, as luck would have it, the power came on, the gates swung open, and we were on our way.  Val caught her flight and the rest of the journey went well, I am pleased to report.

After dropping her off at the airport I drove back to the flat, and despite the traumatic start, managed to grab a bit more sleep.  Then I had a very enjoyable 2 hour video chat putting the world to rights with a former work colleague back in the UK.   Once that concluded, I had lunch (salad and fruit, you will be pleased to know) then decided to do one of my favourite, slightly longer, coast walks: 16km (10 mi) over the hill and down the Velvet Strand via Sutton to Howth.   It went well, and was very enjoyable despite the relatively cool conditions.

En route, I spotted samphire growing in the mud flats near Sutton station.   It’s a small halophytic plant which looks a bit like a miniature Saguaro cactus (pictured in the featured image at the top of this blog).   It’s edible when steamed as a vegetable, and is sometimes served with seafood.   It’s the first I’ve seen in Ireland.   Once I arrived in Howth, I treated myself to refreshments at the “Insomnia” café and then caught the train and bus back to Malahide.

I managed to pick up a half price lasagne in Tesco on the way, so now it’s time to put my culinary skills to the test and get the oven on!

Today’s photos (click to enlarge)

On the top of Paddy’s Hill The tree stump up in the demesne which has been turned into a sculpture of a giant Irish elk.  The way the branches have been used to create the antlers is clever, but I’m still not sure whether I really like it
Looking down the Velvet Strand at Portmarnock.   Not so appealing on a grey afternoon, but still plenty of people venturing into the water Howth buzzing, as usual
Journey’s end! …and the reward
I’m not sure exactly what the building work near the station at Howth is doing, but whatever it is is massive and has been going on for quite a long time.   Still not much to show for it at ground-level, however.
Interactive map

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

Total distance: 16254 m
Max elevation: 50 m
Min elevation: -1 m
Total climbing: 155 m
Total descent: -159 m
Total time: 02:38:48
Download file: Samphire walk to Howth compressed corrected.gpx

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