Ireland is now a favourite destination and I am here for the third time in 12 months. The weather is unpredictable but the scenery is wonderful and the people disarmingly charming. Last year, the North West Cycle Trail between Sligo and Donegal charmed me with its wild scenery, little lanes all to myself and mysterious mountains looking down over me.
This time it was a day ride and I discovered a new trail.
I followed a section of Eurovelo 1, between Donegal Town and Ardara. The journey was 47 miles and took me along more tiny lanes into the hills. To the south, the scenery was easy on the eye with the distant mountains in Sligo behind Donegal Bay. Looking north, Loughros More Bay with its wide expanse of sand could be seen. The landscape was peatlands and local people are still collecting peat for fuel. The turfs were stored in triangular shaped mounds often covered in thatch to protect them from the weather. There were occasional thatched buildings and many remains of former dwellings long since abandoned.
The route had a few challenging moments with some lumpy hills so reasonable fitness is needed. It was a day much to my liking.