Statistics:  15.9 miles,  ascent 1922′,  descent 1715′,  6 3/4 hours.

We again passed through Dingle and enjoyed its charm as we left for the next adventure.  Today’s path took us out of this valley and elevation was quickly attained, revealing great views of the town and the surrounding area. At one point, we were just able to make out the island of Skellig Michael which we had explored a week earlier during our rest day on the Kerry Way.

Dingle Harbour

Reaching the beach town of Ventry we picked up a few interesting stones and shells as we investigated that beach area.

ventry beach
The Beach at Ventry

About the time we were beginning to think about lunch we happened upon Geoff, Kathy, and Darby, a man and two women we had met while walking the first day of our Dingle Way hike (and will meet again!).  They asked us to join them for lunch, but there was a little misunderstanding as someone else (see picture below) thought that she was invited also!

sheep at table
Our lunch stop with a friend

On the next section of trail there were spectacular views of the irregular coastline along Dingle Bay.

Coastline of Dingle Bay

We had begun to make our way up along the shoulder of Mount Eagle when the Blasket Islands came into view.

trail under mt eagle.jpg

Just as we were basking in the beauty of this lovely mountainside, we were amazed to see a whole village of small, beehive shaped hut ruins or clocháns.  The hillside was dotted with dozens of them!

beehives dingle
The beehive shaped clocháns

Hacking our way through heavy vegetation along the trail, we realized that there were even more beehive remains under all the bracken.

beehive ruin

We continued around the shoulder of Mount Eagle, where we encountered more collapsed, ancient beehive huts. Later we learned that these may be up to 1,500 years old (6th century).   More stunning views presented themselves, including Coumeenoole Bay, Dunmore Head and the Blasket Islands.

Coumeenoole Bay
The Blaset Islands in the distance

A fierce, bitter-cold wind hit us as we began a steep descent down Mount Eagle.  Reaching the valley floor, we still had several miles of road-walking to reach our B&B, An Portan.   During that final stretch, we were amazed to see as part of the landscape in some farmyards, many centuries of Irish history in the form of ancient beehives and famine house ruins scattered among modern farm equipment.

beehive and famine house
A clochán among famine house ruins

We were glad to finally arrive at An Portan B&B, to be warmly greeted by our host, Ronan.  She was most interested to learn that we were from the San Francisco Bay Area where she spent a summer in San Francisco as a student years ago.

One thought

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.