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Been a hell of a 2 weeks for sure!!!

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Just in from doing the school run and what a dirty rotten horrible day…The worst kind really. Sideways rain kinda day. So bad I won’t even be so evil as to kick the dogs out into it for the day and so they lie sprawled on their backs in their beds with legs and paws in the air.
It’s that time of the year again.
Ah NOOOOO!!!

Leaves and branches litter the roads, home heating oil is ordered in mad panic and comments such as “The nights are fair drawing in” are exchanged over super market trolleys as firelighters and hot-cups are grabbed from the shelves… Kids leg it up the school path with coats buttoned up to their eyes.
Ah don’t I remember it well. Being sent off looking like an invading pack of E.Ts with the hoods of our parka jackets zipped up so high you couldn’t even see where you were running… If first you managed to escape the attention of the bigger kids who loved to grab and swing you by the ridiculous outward furry collar then the job of escaping from the clutches of the hood was just as much a quest with many a bloodied lip caught in the chunky zips as kids hurriedly tried to return to human form before entering the classroom!!! 


It all seemed to change so fast

Summer feels like only yesterday as I kayaked on the calm tranquil Killarney lakes with my daughter in the front cock pit slowing our boat by dipping her feet in the tepid water. Easing our vessel through spectacular limestone caves spotting ancient fossils before stopping off for delicious coffee, juice and rocky road cake on the old pier of Dinis cottage café before heading back lesurely to our launch beach. A sublime relaxing evening spent in the wilds feeling we were in fact paddling through time…
It even felt like Wolves and Eagles were spying us from the high oak forested slopes…
But the rain is belting down now and still the dogs don’t stir,pretending their asleep. Terrified my attention will be drawn to them and change my mind and decide to kick them out into the deluge.
Why does it always seem to rain like this after returning from a trip away?!?!
Reminding you you’re back. Back with a bang!!!
“It’s all over now so get used to it buddy…” the weather gods seem to be implying…
Ridiculous I know but to me it ALWAYS seems this way.  
But hey…as the saying goes…”Far off hills are always greener” or in my case “Whiter” as the trip away which I have just returned is from climbing the towering majestic and snowy peaks of the French Alps…

And what an awesome trip it was…!!!

It actually began even before we left Kerry as just a few days before we headed away Richard and myself had arisen ridiculously early and headed to Corrán Tuathail by torch light to climb its mighty multi-pitch rock (and Veg!) climb – the superb – “Primroses”. 
Graded modestly at VS but pretty stiff for the grade for sure as I’d learned on 3 previous ascents…

An invigorating feeling to be heading in a perfectly still Hags Glen at such an hour to tackle such a worthy challenge. Even the mountain sheep still slept and not a single sound could be heard as we both contemplated what excitement and adventures this day would bring. No harm getting used to having to shoulder a laden pack at an hour when we should rightly be tucked snuggly in our beds and a bit of prep no doubt for the even more ridiculous Alpine starts we would be faced with over the coming week or so, though the real reason we had headed off at “silly O’ clock” was really due to the fact that I needed to be home to collect my daughter from school at 2!!!

We arrived at the base of the imposing vertical wall just as the first hint of the new dawn began to illuminate a wondrous  sky. What a truly sublime and awe-inspiring view to behold as the sun rose from behind the modest little summit of Strickeen just across the Glen from us. A truly breath-taking spectacle and we both felt it was surely a positive omen for the day ahead.

Well a most outstanding days climbing ensued for sure. In blistering sun-shine and swapping leads we carefully and meticulously ambled up the steep face. Packing away the rack at the ridges end we both headed our separate ways, Richard keen to continue enjoying the most finest of days in the mountains and I under pressure to get back to collect my 5 year old. Though I was seriously beginning to tire after the exertions of the day I still made good time out the Glen and after a quick stop off at the child-minders on the short drive home, soon I was showered and refreshed once again as I sat down with coffee in hand and gazed up at the mighty Reeks…



What an outstanding day…the route, the weather, the company….
Everything utterly superb.

Not long now and we would be off to the Alps and boy what an Adventure THAT was!!!


Blog post coming soon….