Day 7, Waterford – Tullow


We woke to BLUE SKY!!! First one on the trip and it would be blue sky ALL DAY (I guess we’ll pay for it tomorrow when it is supposed to rain all day!!) A half hour down the road I came around a turn and there was the ferry we would catch this morning to get us across the river . . .


. . . tide was out when I drove to the ferry dock in Passage East . . .


. . . but the water was deep enough for the ferry and 10 minutes later the ferry arrived . . .


. . . so had a few more riders so away we went. In fact, Bob and Mavis missed the ferry leaving by only 30 seconds and the captain backed up the ferry so thy could load . . . nice!!!


Between these two towns they just about have the human body covered . . . funny!!!


One of the first sites we passed today was the ruins of the Dunbrody Abbey and Castle. The castle features an intricate yew hedge maze made up of 1,500 yew trees and gravel paths, only one of two full mazes in Ireland. Unfortunately, we rolled by about 9:30am and the whole thing did not open until 11:00am


About ten kilometers down the road was the homestead of JFK’s great grandfather, Patrick Kennedy . . . .


. . . the exhibit traces his leaving Ireland as a famine emigrant to his great grandchildren’s return years later.


Saw several very elaborate memorials to folks who died along the rural country roads. This young chap was only 19 years old.


Here was a new HUGE bridge being built on the outskirts of  New Ross. I thought it was interesting they started on both ends AND the middle, connecting all the pieces. New Ross has a VERY compact downtown area and a fellow I talked to at the Lidl store said the new bridge will relieve the two hour daily weekday traffic jams in New Ross.


. . . oh the Irish are interested in what is happening in the United States . . .


. . . in fact there is even an Irish American magazine display at the Dunbrody Visitor Center which offers highlights of famous  Americans of Irish backgrounds.


Traci TREK takes a little rest as I eat a little lunchy!!!


Here is the Dunbrody which is an exact replica of a ship used to transport folks from Ireland to the west. As many as 200 poor souls would be held below decks for the 40 day journey, rarely allowed to get up on deck. Needless to say the conditions were horrible . . . and many died during the trip.


Here is a the Emigrant Flame that was lit from a flame carried to Ireland from the Kennedy ‘Eternal Flame’ Memorial in Arlington, VA. It traveled the 3,700 miles and lit this flame exactly 50 years after the visit of JFK.


As I rolled thought town in SLOWWWWWW Saturday traffic I passed Hanrahan’s which looked like a nice place. Too bad I had already eaten lunch. I could see from the traffic issues the new bridge and bypass is VERY much needed.


Back out in the countryside, the views rolled by as I climbed up from the river. GREAT views and vistas today made especially nice by the sunshine.


oh. . . . I guess they have powerline issues in Ireland too!!!! Utilities seem to be the bad guys all over the world.


This was typical of the rural road we traveled today. Even on the weekend these local roads had VERY little traffic. Maybe one car every 15 minutes and I got the idea they were homeowners along the way. Peaceful!! But the poochie ‘telegraph’ system announced our arrivals with one dog barking and the next one several houses down picking up the cadence. The dogs are very friendly and I never had one chase me. Just came out to say ‘Hi’!  Woof!!


Oh boy . . . first one of these I have seen in Ireland!!


Bicycle art along the road . . . nice!!!


I stopped mid afternoon for a little ice cream sandwich at Murphy’s. In the rural areas stores are rare and gas station mostly just sell . . . gas. Lucky for me Murphy’s had a freezer full of ice cream novelties!!!


Very, very nice riding today. Lots of climbing but very few steep elevations . . . and it was all stretched over 60 miles.


Nice example of a typical church found in the small towns we roll though dotting the countryside . . .


. . . right down from the church though was the 1798 ‘hanging stone’ which I guess was used to handle worldly crimes the locals were not willing to wait for the good Lord to handle (. . . but the funeral was probably held down the street at the church!!)


. . . well this should not be a problem during our stay in Ireland. Sounds like July and August are the best months to bike in Ireland. The rest of the year can evidently be too ‘iffy’!!!


Very sad . . . only 13 years old.


. . . but right down the road was this spray of color . . .very nice.


We were supposed to stay in Buncloddy tonight but between the time Tony made the reservations in December and the start of our tour the place closed down. And it was the only hotel in town. So . . . we got a nice ‘upgrade’ to the Mount Wolseley, a country club, golf club, hotel and spa. Yippee (however it did make what would have been a 45 mile day into a 60 mile day to get here). Here is their website. In the lobby, I talked to an American from Atlanta, over in Ireland for a wedding. The wedding was yesterday, Friday, and the reception started last night and lasted until 6:00am this morning. At 3:00pm, when I rolled in and talked to him the wedding party was back in the bar . . . continuing the celebration!!!


Nice place . . . and once again we just rolled our bikes through the lobby and into one of the meeting rooms for overnight storage. I hope all the cow manure I rolled through  today had worn off the tires!!!


Very bright room.

Soon it was time to retire to the bar where there were about 10 bar stools but many, many comfy couches. Down right civilized!!!

. . . so of course our BAC members started Happy Hour in grand fashion . . .

Judy had a gin and tonic . . .  BIG!!!

With drinks in hand, Deb, Denise and Ron were ready for our nightly meeting . . . 

. . . where ride leader Tom surprised us with  a tasting of St Jameson Irish whisky . . . he said it ‘might’ absolve us from missing Mass tomorrow.

. . . Bo and I poured and passed out the samples . . .

. . . and Ben, who is a beer tasting judge back home in TN, led us through the proper way to sample and judge a fine spirit . . .

. . . soon it was time for dinner. Usually be have a choice of 3-4 starters, main courses and desserts.  Nobody left dinner hungry!!!