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"When Piggies Fly" Part 3: An Autumn Coddiwomple

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Rhode trip, Jul 8, 2017.

  1. rockydog

    rockydog just a guy

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    just found this RR, jolly good show. I've spent the last couple of summers hanging around Martins joint helping out with travelers like you, either getting their bikes or dropping them off. Funny seeing that still too low clothes line that i built for Martin....Be back next summer starting in july, hope to see you there, stephen
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  2. ben2go

    ben2go Long timer

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    @Rhode trip That trip was pretty courageous. Stepping outside your comfort zone and riding almost daily. I couldn't do it, even in my youth
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  3. Rhode trip

    Rhode trip guided by voices Supporter

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    Hey, rockydog, that's pretty cool and it must be a lot of fun helping out with all the travelers passing through Motofierme. Maybe we'll see you next time, except I'm hoping to be back well before July this year. Apparently... and yes, I've checked it out.... it's less rainy in the Spring. We'll see how that works out.:lol3

    I couldn't afford it in my youth...heck, probably can't afford it now. Doing it anyway.
    It's interesting that you mention riding almost every day. Seems like a lot of ride reports entail a lot more off-bike activities, which is cool. But Mrs Trip and I don't do too well multi-tasking, I guess. We averaged about 1 day off a week. I would plan the next days ride each evening, and that can get a little stressful since it's a juggle with lodging, suitable routes, and interesting sights along the way.
  4. dcwilcox

    dcwilcox Been here awhile

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    Hey Rhodie, finally made some time to read this report and it is just awesome! Your story and photos are terrific and Ireland is beautiful! I just love the narrow roads that seem wind endlessly through the country!

    Also totally opens things up for continuing the RFSR mode . . . how cool is having bikes on 2 continents?!
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  5. Rhode trip

    Rhode trip guided by voices Supporter

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    Thanks, dc! It is great having the bikes in Europe, other than it complicates planning when to ride where. Where do I put the bikes to facilitate riding when we have time? We are currently in Baja, and I guess we will return to Tucson this trip. But if we can't get back till summer..... I guess on the scale of problems, this is not a bad one to have. :-)
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  6. Rhode trip

    Rhode trip guided by voices Supporter

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  7. Rhode trip

    Rhode trip guided by voices Supporter

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    A wee cottage in Drumnadrochit... on the shore of Loch Ness.... and two wee piggies have a well-earned rest. It's 9:45 pm here... and twilight has just begun.

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  8. yehaaa6

    yehaaa6 Been here awhile Supporter

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    So glad to see more European adventures! When I grow up, I wanna be as cool as the Trips.

    Sent from my Pixel using Tapatalk
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  9. VTbeemer

    VTbeemer Traveler Supporter

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    0487F13E-01E9-4AD8-859B-916DC2160A7D.jpeg B7C37622-FC0A-4763-B75C-A49D99767746.jpeg Have a good trip.
    I was just up in Loch Ness last week. We did the North Coast 500 thru John O’ Groats and Isle of Skye.
    Am in Normandy France now. You guys will love the Scottish Highlands!


    Dan

    Attached Files:

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  10. TheAdmiral

    TheAdmiral Long timer

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    Awesome. May you have less rain this time.
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  11. Rhode trip

    Rhode trip guided by voices Supporter

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    May 16th

    It's only about a 15 minute ride from home, and we're heading through the doors into the Rhode Island airport. Checked a couple of bags... the large, self-storing duffles that contain our riding gear. Through security, and then we hung out at the gate for a while. By 9:30 pm, the acceleration is pushing us back into the seats as our plane rushes down the runway.... a single bump,... and we're off. The jet climbs and makes an easy circle over Narragansett Bay. Lights sparkle below us... and then they fade into the darkness of the Atlantic Ocean.
    Kick my shoes off. I hate a red-eye.... squeezed into the seat, eyes clamped shut... not sleeping. It's morning when we glide down into Cork.

    May 17th

    Drag our bags off the carousel, and its a quick pass through customs, then a slow wander through the airport. We wait for the coffee bar to open. An overpriced café americano and a stale pastry to perk us up. It's still early, so we killed a little time, then walked out the doors and into a waiting taxi. "Belgooly, please". Once I explained it, the taxi driver knew just where we were going... Motofierme. It's only a 15 - 20 minute ride on this end too. Rolled into Wheatwacker's yard.

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    Our bikes were waiting for us. We found our gear tucked away on one of the shelves.... just where we left it... the panniers and helmets that we'd left behind. We took our time packing up, and spent a little while just visiting with Martin and Ed from New Mexico who was helping with the Spring crop of riders coming in for their bikes. Both of them are interesting guys and fun to talk to… we swapped some stories over another cup of coffee.

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    Ed and Martin saw us off as we left... Martin snapping our photo as we took one of them.

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    You're immediately immersed in the lush Irish landscape. Fields of brilliant yellow canola blossoms were blooming.

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    Plump cows grazing contentedly...

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    Ahhh.… feels good to be riding again....

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    We rumbled over the bridge at Crossbarry… site of the Crossbarry Ambush, one of the largest battles of the war for Irish Independence, the morning of March 19th, 1921.
    About 100 IRA volunteers were laying low in Crossbarry when roughly 1200 British troops ...from Cork, from Kinsale, and points north and west, attempted to encircle them. The Irish were alerted, and struck first... stopping the lorries at the crossroads, and inflicting several casualties. Then they managed to slip through the surrounding lines, and escaped. An interesting footnote: the English commander who bungled this assault, went on, as a general, to surrender Singapore to the Japanese in 1942.

    The Crossbarry Memorial
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    From Crossbarry we rode north and then east, looping in a wide circle around the city of Cork.

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    Bridge over the River Lee

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    We rode along the low hilltops that follow the Nagles mountains.

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    and along the south side of the River Blackwater into the town of Fermoy.

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    We bought a couple of sandwiches at a butcher shop, and had a coffee and a brownie for an afternoon snack. Our dinner secured, we crossed the Blackwater river on the bridge there, and rode east out of town.

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    Ireland has the best road names.

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    Kilworth Mountains, now. Off to our north.

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    It's early evening... the cows are heading home.... the farmer doesn't need to tell them to head for the barn.

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    The roads wind up and down, over a series of small ridges...

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    Into the village of Araglin. It's tucked into a narrow river valley, with steep banks rising from a rocky stream. There's not much there... a school, a small hall... no store, not even a pub to liven things up.

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    A couple of houses, a blink, and we're through it. Followed a steep road up to where the land leveled off. I'd booked a little cottage on Air BnB.

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    We sat outside, and ate our sandwiches for supper. There was a nice view over the fields that surrounded the farm, off to the hills in either direction.

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    It was quiet as the sun went down... and I slept like a rock.
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  12. TheAdmiral

    TheAdmiral Long timer

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    Jealousy alert! Very nice. I suspect the English Officer, later General to surrender, had some Royal connections eh? lol.
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  13. AMEretired

    AMEretired Been here awhile Supporter

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    Ireland!!! How we loved the riding and the people there !!! And the added benefit of saving on sunscreen. Thanks for the great report, please keep it up.
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  14. Rhode trip

    Rhode trip guided by voices Supporter

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    Thanks Admiral! I'd bet he had some connections somewhere!

    Thanks, AMEretired! Ireland is pretty awesome.
  15. Rhode trip

    Rhode trip guided by voices Supporter

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    Friday, May 18th

    We had coffee in the little cottage, but we had neglected to pick anything up the evening before for breakfast. So we got an early-for-us start... the dew had burned off, but the morning still had a sparkle to it.

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    Back through Araglin. We crossed over to the north side of the river, and then headed towards the Knockmealdown mountains. (I always thought of these as the "sister" hills to the Blow-me-Down mountains in Newfoundland. :eek7)

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    A farmer out doing some fence repairs was the only person we saw since the cottage. He waved when he noticed us stopped along the road.

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    It was cool riding, and we were heading up higher... so we had stopped to put on another layer.

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    Patches of moor and forest on the mountainsides.

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    chased a few sheep.

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    Through a wide gap, down the other side.

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    Came out of the hills and into the town of Clogheen.

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    Parked on the corner of Cockpit Lane.

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    We went into Browne's XL Supermarket to look for a little something for breakfast.

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    But it turned out they had a lunch counter in there... and they made us a full Irish breakfast!

    Crossed a crystal-clear river on a stone bridge.


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    "Damn tourists." I have my bike parked in the middle of the bridge while I'm snapping photos....

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    We were riding through some fields when we saw this.... a dead crow hung from a stick at the edge of a field....

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    We thought this was really interesting because both of us had read just recently about Crow Funerals and how crows react to the death of one of the birds.
    https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2015/10/151003-animals-science-crows-birds-culture-brains/
    It's a scarecrow that will actually work.

    Under a train bridge.

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    More brilliant yellow fields.

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    A thatch roof outbuilding.

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    A quiet village on a late Friday morning.

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    Next along.... a very interesting village called "The Commons"

    It was the home of John Joe Barry, the "Ballingarry Hare", who was one of the fastest men alive in the 1940's. Born in the US, raised in Ireland, he broke a number of records and ran in the Olympics.

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    But The Commons is also the site of the "Young Ireland" uprising of 1848.

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    The members of the Young Ireland movement were inspired to rise up by the revolutionary spirit that swept Europe in 1848, as well as the rigors of the Great Famine and the mass emigration of those years. They tried to unite both the landlords and the tenant farmers to rise against English domination. They were the first to fly the Irish tri-color, the orange and green.

    The rising came to a head at The Commons... when a force of about 50 police came to arrest the leaders of the movement. Armed, behind barricades, they confronted the police, who turned and fled up the hillside from town, followed by the insurrectionists. They took refuge at the farm since known as The Warhouse. The police held 5 children who lived there as hostages.

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    William Smith O'Brien, the leader of the Young Ireland Party attempted to negotiate. He promised them safe passage if they laid down their arms. He shook hands with several officers through a window. Then a shot rang out. O'Brien was wounded... 2 other men were hit as well as they dragged him back. Firing continued for hours, but the police position was impregnable.

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    More rebels were hit...several were killed by police fire. The besiegers huddled behind the wall that fronted the yard. Eventually they were forced to withdraw as police reinforcements arrived.

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    The leaders of the Young Ireland insurrection were captured and deported to Australia. The house was closed when we were there, but is now a museum of the movement and the conditions during the famine years. We didn't know any of this until we wandered into town...…

    I try to route us through the mountains as much as possible, because the riding is more interesting. A side effect of this?.... we see a lot of wind turbines....

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    ...they go along with the expansive views....

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    A tower house.

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    an old cemetery.

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    The town of Timahoe. We rambled around the old churchyard for a while.

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    There's quite an impressive round tower here.

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    We ended Friday in the town of Killenard, at the Heritage Golf Club, of all places. I'd gotten a cheap rate on a timeshare condo. It overlooked the golf course. Decorated in a weird, Trumpian style...vaguely Napoleonic furniture, lots of faux gold leaf and Corian.... but cheap, and a little run down.

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    The only open restaurant was the Clubhouse... and we just couldn't face it. So I rode into the nearby town of Portarlington, and got a pizza. Special Delivery!!

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  16. Blader54

    Blader54 Long timer

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    Some brilliant riding you're doing there! Ace photos and reporting! Thanks!
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  17. TheAdmiral

    TheAdmiral Long timer

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    Breathtaking!
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  18. Rhode trip

    Rhode trip guided by voices Supporter

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    Ha. You guys are too kind...but thanks!
  19. ubermick

    ubermick Long timer

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    Can you just skip Scotland, and just keep riding round Ireland? It's helping a bit with the constant homesickness... :(
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  20. Rhode trip

    Rhode trip guided by voices Supporter

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    Saturday, May 19th

    We left the golf course heading northeast, down narrow roads past open fields.

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    Through well-tended suburbs to the west of Dublin... looked like perfectly kept horse farms … not a lot of real agriculture going on.

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    Over the River Barrow.

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    A gas station in Portarlington… filled the tanks and bought some breakfast... a dry looking granola bar for Mrs Trip.... but I think what's actually wrinkling her nose is the sticky-sweet
    cello-wrapped "pastry" I'm eating. Washed it down with some nasty gas station coffee... 4 sugars 'cause it's burnt and bitter.

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    I'm wound up from all the sugar like a toddler who's missed his nap.... c'mon baby, let's ride!

    We crossed over the Grand Canal on Macartney's Lock Bridge, built in 1784. The canal runs all the way from Dublin on the east coast of Ireland to the River Shannon in the west.

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    The lock still works...

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    I would have liked to see it, but there was no boat to be seen. The tow path runs along the canal... you can ride it on a bicycle, but no motorized vehicles allowed.

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    Not much traffic... just a local swain out for a spin in his tractor...

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    Through some quiet towns. I'm a little fuzzy on the actual route.... I'm not going to mention any names..... but it seems someone forgot to turn on her Spot tracker today....


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    Hmmm... 10km east of Rhode.... an interesting name.... but we didn't go there.

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    We managed to find a way over the M4 motorway, though... and back onto some country lanes...

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    So we just continued in a general follow-your-nose direction...

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    A large Anglican church.

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    Found our way back into some hills...

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    ...just cruising along, enjoying the views...

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    Oops! Need a bit of a re-route.....

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    Somewhere along the way, we left the Republic of Ireland behind, and crossed into Northern Ireland and hence, the United Kingdom. There's no noticeable border these days, although what Brexit will bring, no one really knows. The first thing you notice is that the signs are in miles and not kilometers any more. Passed through the town of Darkley.

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    and up along the Callan river. Through some more hedge-lined lanes, and we arrived at the Hillview Lodge. We seem to have a golf theme going on here.... The B&B features a driving range if you're inclined to whack a few balls. Nice place. Recommended if you're in the area. http://www.hillviewlodge.com/

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    Once we'd stowed our gear, we rode into Armagh for some dinner. There's a nice walkable downtown and there were a lot of people out enjoying the early evening. We had a good meal in one of the restaurants....

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    By the time we were done, the crowds were gone, and we had a little stroll through the neighborhood before we rode back out of town to the B&B.

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