The Easter weekend was busy, to say the least. I hit the road Friday for Cresslough in Co. Donegal for some adventure race training with Shaun my IKAT teammate. After a four hour drive we had a bite to eat and set off on the mountain bikes.
After a nice tricky mountain bike section through Ards Forest we came out into the open to views like the one above. The Donegal coast is hard to beat, anywhere in the world.
As the wind started to pick up we left the shelter of the woods and made our way by mostly road to Muckish Mountain for a hike. By the time we hit the road there was almost a storm blowing. I am not exaggerating here as I was blown clean off the bike into a ditch at one stage. We reached Muckish just about in one piece and knew it was going to be a windy climb.
A section of trail before Muckish, along an old railway. Fabulous untouched countryside.
We scrambled our way up Muckish to the top where the ruins of an old sand mine were still in place. Shaun informed me the workers had to clock in every morning, but the clock-in was at the top of the mountain. No more complaining for us that hate the traffic!
The wind was ferocious on the mountain. On numerous occasions we grabbed boulders to hang on, or be blown clean off the side. We knew staying low to the ground with three points of contact at all times was the only way to go. We hung on to the cross on the top, did a quick look around at the area below and took off down the mountain before it got any crazier in the wind.
On returning to the bikes, after some more great expedition race discussions, we were glad to have a tailwind for a few minutes, then more headwind, before reaching the coastline.
We hike along the beach after some biking in the sanddunes . I managed to come off the bike twice in the dunes. I need the practice on the technical side of mountain biking and this was just the area to do it. A soft landing makes it easier to try things a little more. On one of these landings I did, however, manage to lose my Gopro camera. We were five kilometres away before it dawned on me it was even missing. We backtracked and found it a half an hour later. Luckily so or these photos would be gone forever.After a 40 minute hike in the dunes it was beginning to get dark so we biked our way home. A super 6 hour session, a real mixed bag.
We woke Saturday, had a skype with out team mates in New Zealand over breakfast and went for a sea kayak soon after. A massive good luck to Byron, our teammate, taking part in Godzone Adventure Race in New Zealand next week. Some day we might make it out there to race.
The Sea kayaking was fun, and with an outgoing tide we covered 13 km in two hours, landing with a super spectacular capsize on the beach at the finish. Team IKAT like to do things gracefully!
I hit the road after the kayak for the journey home and had a rest day Sunday. I was pretty tired. The housework had to be done too along with other things I can easily forget when getting caught up in training.
Easter Monday was a fabulous day. I will explain the training session with a few photos as I know you are getting bored reading. I did a fast hike of the Glencoaghan Horseshoe, part of the Twelve Bens mountain range. I have blogged on a few sessions here in the past. Unfortunately my injury only held up for the first three hours and the last half an hour was painful. I’m still confused as to what it is. Downhill hiking and running seem to cause worst pain, meaning it is definately an impact issue. Anyhow here is an idea of the day yesterday and some stats below.
Looking South from the Twelve Bens.
A few of the peaks I hiked.
Selfies are in these days, so had to stick one up I suppose.