Upon arriving in Dingle one fine early April afternoon, our bed and breakfast hostess suggested we take the two-hour or so drive along the Slea Head Road so we could witness the fantastic views and rugged landscape that defines the Dingle Peninsula, the most westerly landscape in Europe.
We could see the weather was changing. The forecast was for rain, but we thought what the heck, we’re only here over night we better take in as much as we can.
So, we headed out.
The weather changed faster than we’d anticipated.
We drove our small rental car along the narrow coastal road which hugged the rugged hills and cliffs, feeling the power of the gale force winds as they buffeted about us. At one point, so taken by the scenery, we stopped to get out of the car only to be instantly left wondering if we’d be able to open the car doors again to get back in.
Standing in the middle of nowhere with a blasting wind howling around me and a misty light rain settling in left me feeling somewhat vulnerable. The waves of the Atlantic crashed mercilessly against the shoreline with a deafening roar, muffling our yelled words to one another which were then swept away with each mighty wind gust. Once back inside the car we thought it best to stay there.
We encountered little traffic. Tourist season had not yet begun. Locals were probably smart enough to stay home. The road was one lane wide. Getting by an oncoming vehicle meant someone had to give way. If you weren’t near a pull-out area, you reversed until you found one.
We encountered many seagulls. It amazed me how they were able to stand on the ancient stone walls that lined the road and brave the winds seemingly without effort. Like the fellow in this image, they just stood there, braced against the onslaught and took it all in. We pulled to the side of the road and I opened the car window to get this image. The seagull posed, nonplussed by my close proximity, like it was all in a day’s work. (Obviously practicing for the tourist season.)
As we journeyed, the landscape rolled and received the waves as it had for millennia. In the storm’s violence still the land seemed peaceful. It was just another interactive day with the forces of nature.
Dotted along the road were the ruins of former monastic settlements and churches which only added to the drama of the Dingle Peninsula landscape.
Drama which appeared around every corner and in many rugged guises.
Larger than life and yet still accessible.
That is Ireland.
Thanks for visiting …
Copyright Aimwell Enterprises 2012