Just finished watching the Irish weather forecast for the next few days and it looks like the rain of today will be slow to move away. However, as promised, here are some images taken during the day as the walk proceeded from a wet Galway to a wetter Moycullen.
There is a sub-plot to this walk. There used to be a railway from Galway to Clifden but it was closed down many years ago. The line of the track remains and it is possible to walk along a few sections. Unfortunately there are many sections where the route is no longer obvious and many places where the land has been taken over by farmers or by builders and incorporated into gardens, golf courses or industrial buildings. That isn’t enough to stop Rosie though although even she had to make a few detours.
The image above shows the modern railway in Galway and the point where the track to Clifden branched off. A good start and for the next three or four miles the line of the railway was incorporated into a cycle path that connects the City Centre to the University of Galway Campus along the banks of the River Corrib.
Unfortunately the good progress didn’t last all day. The cycle path disappeared and the line of the railway became a little more difficult to find. It also became very boggy underfoot and in places there were obstacles along the route that were to provide some excitement!
Along the way we came across a nice touch in the grounds of the Glenlo Hotel. They have renovated a couple of the original railway carriages used on the Clifden to Galway line and they are now used as a restaurant by the Hotel.
The last section of the day took us into the town of Moycullen. We entered the geographical area known as Connemara and there were sections of the line which had been turned into minor roads, making the final section a little easier than some of the earlier ones. It was also good to see that some of the original railway buildings had been converted into modern accommodation, such as the cottage below that was originally sited at the point where the railway crossed a road and level crossing gates needed to be operated.
After Moycullen we drove back to Galway Bay along a bog road that ended at the village of Spiddal. There is a fabulous beach at Spiddal, but there wasn’t much chance of a paddle today as the sea was a bit rough and the waves were crashing against the sea-wall.
Tomorrow we will walk from Moycullen to Oughterard and will finish on the shores of Ireland’s second biggest lake. Lets hope the rain keeps off.