Trip Start Sep 30, 2012
Trip End Oct 13, 2012

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What I did
Connemara National Park
Read my review - 5/5 stars

Flag of Ireland  , Western Ireland,
Saturday, October 6, 2012

BEST DAY YET!!!! And so incredibly FULL!!. We knew we wanted lots of walking after a
fairly long sitting in the car day yesterday so off we headed to Connemara
National Park with not high expectations, just knew the scenery looked awesome
so we knew we'd have a great walk.  The signs indicated 3 routes, easy, medium and hard.  We just plodded along – easy was pleasant,over wooden paths through the bogs and led nicely into the next so on we went, all uphill and gradually getting steeper. Well, the pictures will tell the story!! 
Up and up and up – the scenery becoming even more amazing as we headed onwards and each step, once out of the bogs was onto a placed piece of slate (of course Rich gave me my geology lesson - it's called to a schist, which is metamorphosed rock).  An Irish chap we met on the way up said it was an 8 million Euro project and all the rock was dropped by helicopter.  What an experience!!! One young Puerto Rican girl got partway up the steepest rock face and was very frightened.  We encouraged her along and then an Israeli chap held her hand and helped her up the rest of the way to the summit.  Pretty durn proud of ourselves we were, lol.  2 crazy Israeli’s pulled out their wee stove and brewed coffee – hilarious to smell fresh coffee at the top of a mountain!  Much more of an effort than we could possibly have imagined. 
Absolutely magical mountain – called Diamond Hill – one of Twelve Bens or Twelve Pins as they are called.  We were speechless with the beauty surrounding us. Came down around the back, following the stones and later the wooden pathways to the bottom for a bit of lunch.  

It was at the bottom having lunch where we met our new Irish friends, Phil (she's Welsh) and Anthony.  We recognized them a bit along the way as they were staying at Rosleague Manor as well.
Home to shower, cup of tea and off again to do a bit of shopping.  We each found great Aran
sweaters – well actually Rich found 2 and I found a great open weave scarf.  Into Clifden and popped into a local jewellery shop that I had found a brochure for in our hotel.  What a character the owner – we had a blast and yup, Rich ended up with a new bracelet ("it will give you immense power! – especially naked and in the middle of the night like the Vikings of old" - he
even showed Rich a picture – they seemingly went to battle naked – huh??) Oh how we howled with laughter and joked. Legs were feeling the hike so back to Manor House.

Sitting in front of peat fire in the sitting room, me blogging, R reading the Vancouver news, when Phil and Anthony joined us and we started to chat.  Long story only slightly shorter – we sat
together for dinner (upon R's delicately put suggestion) and 3 hours later headed up to bed.  He is a psychiatrist, Phil used to be a nurse but basically still cares for their 4 children as well as elderly parents. We had much to share and talk about.  Anthony loved teasing Rich about having life so hard - yeh right!!  As we have yet to have rain, totally unheard of course, they just wanted to follow us wherever we go.  We exchanged contact info and I really hope we can show them Canada one day. 
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My Review Of The Place I've Seen

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