Coast To Coast in Ireland: From City to Wilderness on the Kerry Way

The Kerry Way is the last formal trail we will follow on our walk across Ireland. It starts innocently enough in Killarney’s city centre, across the street from the Tourist Information Office. An appropriate location given the crush of largely North American visitors we encountered last night.

Today, our route starts with an urbane exit from the city following busy roads, passing a long string of row housing and hotels, shops and gas stations. Buildings give way to tall fences and elaborate gates hiding golf courses and exclusive resorts. The path finally diverts into the woods of Killarney National Park. Loud diesels are supplanted with the hushed tones of wind and leaves. Continue reading

Coast To Coast in Ireland: The Road to Muckross Abbey

Breakfast is a worrisome time. It had been a restless night nursing my banged-up knee. Every bend, no matter how slight, was accompanied with a sharp sting at the joint. Constant tossing and repositioning myself in bed, trying to find that magic spot where the pain would go away, only seemed to magnify it. I am now entertaining unwelcome thoughts of delaying our walk for a day. A visit to the doctor seems like a wise course of action.

But an irrational need to keep going ultimately trumps reason. As I push away from the breakfast table, fuelled for the day by eggs, bacon and coffee, I am determined to walk, to see how it will go. After all, this day is guaranteed as easy as pie. Just 20 kilometres, all downhill and all on paved country roads. Continue reading