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Monday, May 27

Today was probably the best weather we've had in Ireland - overcast almost all day but only a few light showers and one short heavier rain, but none lasted more than a few minutes. We rode to the Gap of Dunloe, which involves unmaintained roads only wide enough for one car - often the paving was broken up, especially in the middle of the road. Max speeds were perhaps 20MPH. It took us the better part of two hours to ride 30 miles, including a little backtracking when we got a little lost, since the signage wasn't any better than the road surface. The route had some amazing scenery, though - very wild and remote. We exited via Moll's Gap and then rode down in to Kenmare.

Surviving that, we headed for the Ring of Beara, which skirts the coast a good bit. More amazing scenery, some very tight turns and some fast sweepers. We returned to Killarney via the N71 from Glengarriff-- magnificent road and dramatic scenery with four short tunnels including Turner's Rock Tunnel. The return ride went through the Caha Pass and a long bit through the lush lowland vegetation of Killarney National Park.

Mid-way out the Ring of Beara we stopped for lunch (sandwiches) at a bar in Urhan, between the villages of Eyries and Allihies. The pub owner, Jim Sullivan, was very nice and chatted with us as we were his only lunch customers. When I mentioned to Kate that I wanted to remember to bring home with me one of each kind of euro coin for William, Mr Sullivan gave me one of each - 3.88 euro's worth! The lunch bill was only €8.15, so that was very kind of him.

Another great dinner with the gang, and then Kate and I went into town and visited a pub and heard local musicians performing Irish music. Then we visited a "beer hall" where some very corny entertainment was presented, for example, an audience member (a shill?) lip synched to "Danny Boy" while the actual singer, off stage, sang some parts normal and some parts falsetto and also added the odd belch for good measure.

Kate waiting for me to catch up to her on the ride to Dunlowe Gap
Kate crossing a stone bridge on the ride to Dunlowe Gap
Kate's Hornet resting at lunch, with a shadow to prove the sun was actually out.
Jim Sullivan, proprietor of the Bar in Urhan, near Eyries, Ireland
Panorama of Bantry Bay as seen from Beara Ring ride
The third tunnel on Beara Ring
The fourth tunnel on Beara Ring
view from Molls Gap
view from Molls Gap
Bob and Margie at dinner in Kilarney
Bruce and Brenda at dinner in Kilarney
Charlie at dinner in Kilarney
Jim and Cherry at dinner in Kilarney
John and Dottie at dinner in Kilarney
John S. at dinner in Kilarney
John Z. at dinner in Kilarney
Kate and Bill at dinner in Kilarney
Marcia at dinner in Kilarney
Mike at dinner in Kilarney
Myrna and Marvin at dinner in Kilarney
Musicians at a bar in Killarney
Click here for short sound clip of the musicians