RideEatCamp

Struggling to Clifden

Europe

Wind. When it’s behind you it’s a friend. When it’s in your face it’s your enemy. Today, all day, every second of our ride, the wind and we were enemies.

Carrie rides through bog country.
Carrie rides through bog country.

A pile of peat turf dries out.
A pile of peat turf dries out.

The first half of the ride was on possibly the busiest section of road we’ve ridden on during our trip. What everyone was doing in their cars on a Sunday morning baffled me. But there they were, buzzing up and down the northern coast of the Galway Bay. On the plus side, I was fighting through the wind and sharing the road with the entire population of Galway with a Polish pastry my belly. Supermarkets here have small sections dedicated to Polish foods. This was my first Polish food and it won’t be my last.

Once we got off the main coastal road the ride got much better. We were still getting face punched by the wind, but at least the road was quiet and the scenery beautiful. Carrie commented how quickly the Irish landscape changes. Just yesterday we were riding through a barren landscape of limestone hills and today we entered bog country. The rolling terrain was speckled with small lakes and covered in scrubby grass and small boulders with some looming mountains in the background.

Farmers dig up the peat earth here and produce long bricks of it to dry out. The dried peat we think can then be burned in winter. This may not be true though. Regardless, near most of the houses in the area was a simple shelter housing mounds of peat bricks.

When we reached our caravan park just north of Clifden, Carrie and I were exhausted. Fighting against the wind all day was a challenge we hope not to repeat. This difficult day should help us better appreciate the next day when the wind is a friend again.