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Thursday, May 23

The weather for the ride from Markree Castle, in Collooney, to Westport, was predicted to be grim, but we were quite lucky, in that we only experienced intermittent rain for much of the trip, as opposed to a real frog-strangler. The planned route followed the northern and western coasts for some distance, including a pass by Ceide Fields, a "Neolithic Settlement" interpretive center. The Neolithic remains consist mostly of lots of basketball-sized boulders that were once stone walls built by prehistoric farmers three- to five-thousand years ago, to pen their sheep and cattle. The guide showed us how, using an iron rod, modern researchers had plotted the locations of much of the old stone walls, which were almost entirely buried in peat bogs.

The rest of the ride to Westport was uneventful; quite nice, really, until we hit truck traffic on the last bit of the N59 into Westport.

The group at Markree Castle
Kate looking out to sea at Ceide Fields
Kate probing for neolithic stone wall ruins at Ceide Fields
Kate riding down a particularly nice bit of route N59 near Castlehill, Ireland