|"Do Not Climb on Wet or Foggy Days" yeah...but this is Ireland|
Croagh Patrick is a mountain not far from Galway that (mildly-crazy-)people climb barefoot as a pilgrimage. We attempted to wait for a day with nice weather so we could enjoy the view from the top and all, but those are hit-and-miss-to-the-extreme in Ireland so we settled for what Braveheart called "nice scottish weather, the rain is falling straight down". There were plenty of Irish folk who felt the need to inform us that we had crappy weather for a hike though. As if the rain and fog hadn't clued in the silly American girls that this was not an ideal day.
|He wrote on the back "They put the origin in the wrong way round"|
But it basically meant, "My word these girls are silly"
|All the photos I took were white fog across the top half|
But there is in fact a mountain hiding behind there
His impression of us as a-wee-bit-blumbering did not end with our little ticket mix up though. My competent-traveling-pride would like to chime in here and blame both of these mistakes on the not-overly-helpful-Bus-Eireann-website. The site made it look like Westport is the last stop on the route and we trusted it. This misplaced trust resulted in all three of us sleeping through the stop in Westport and waking up in time for Castlebar. My competent-traveling-pride would also like you to know that most bus stops in Ireland are in front of random pubs and shops with no actual signage to give one any clue about where you are stopped besides "Monroe's" or "Sally's" or the like.
|The beginning of the path up Croagh Patrick looks like Middle Earth|
All it was missing was hobbits and some great looking elves and rangers
|Brilliant camera skills capturing Star actually managing to not fall over|
|Look at the pretty little creek...no wait ... that's our path... oh dear|
|Looking a little less like Middle Earth and a little|
more like Mount Doom
The path was slick and slippery as all get out from the rain and lose stones which seemed to be putting our knees and ankles in increased danger as we went on to the steeper part of the path. Plus the fog was showing no signs of lightening or lifting so our view from the top would be no different from the view of whiteness on the way up. We debated with ourselves for a bit then decided the wise mature thing would be to head back down and not risk getting hurt to see more fog form the top instead of the middle of the mountain. Star and I also had Mss Posie in our brains telling us not to be lame-brains and to not let our pride get us hurt before this summer. (I'm sure my mother wouldn't approve of me falling to my death or hopping down the path with a swollen ankle either). So we turned back and headed down the path from about half way up where the fog got really thick and the path started looking more and more like Mount Doom -- or a less snowy and more rainy version of the Misty Mountains. Neither of those ended up being very fun hikes for the characters so we took heed. And even with the mature-decision-making and heading down early, we had a ton of fun on our little hike.
|The "As you wish" side of the path which we tried to avoid falling down|
And the significant wall of fog we were walking into
|Yup, we're American tourists and sheep are still exciting|
|Mr. Not-sketchy-with-a-mohawk-guy's car|
|Giddy after hitchhiking and not dying|
|The dry socks were the best purchase ever made|