Get Ireland Walking is a National Initiative that aims to maximise the number of people participating in walking – for health, wellbeing and fitness – throughout Ireland. Sandmill Strollers fits this profile with the added bonus of social interaction with local people associated in some way with our two parishes. We should consider registering with this Initiative from Sport Ireland.
We depart at 1.30 pm from St Philip’s Church on the first Tuesday of each month. We aim to find walks that are within easy reach of Dartry (preferably with a refreshment stop included) so that we can return by 5 pm approx.
Our walk in March along the Bray to Greystones Cliff path walk proved most interesting. The weather was perfect, with views of sea birds nesting and swimming. As we reached our turning point on the walk we spotted what looked like a number of white birds nesting at the edge of the cliff – this turned out to be the recently discovered EIRE 8 sign, which last year was restored by local volunteers. It was used as a navigational aid by US planes during the second world war and was uncovered following a gorse fire in 2018. We walked around the sign, which is made of large granite boulders highlighted with white paint. (Its sign is visible on the left of the photograph on the downward slope of the cliff.)
In April the weather forecast was very bad and we decided that a walk along the exposed Royal Canal wasn’t for us. So instead we enjoyed a most pleasant (though damp) walk through Massy’s Estate, which is operated by Coillte. We followed the looped walking trail through forest taking in all the old trees, walled garden, bridges and saw mill ruins along the way. As we neared the end of our walk we met a local man who advised us to visit the remains of the Killakee Wedge Tomb close by. This we did and were delighted with his directions as it is not easy to find and not visited very often. The tomb is missing its cairn material and roof slabs but the chamber is clearly visible and measures about 5m in length. After all the years that we have walked here, none of us had known its existence! Afterwards we adjourned to Timbertrove Cafe for a welcome respite from the rain and welcome refreshments.
What to say about May? Well, Sandra and myself were walking on the Camino de Santiago. Jean Hickey arrived at the meeting point and waited and waited …. so she took her dog for a walk instead. We do need people to join us!
These are our forthcoming walks – we hope to see anyone who would like to get out for a walk and a chat – bring your friends. It is not confined to parishioners and is a stroll, not a hike.
4 June: Hazel House Café and Tibradden Mountain
2 July: Kilcoole Beach & Little Tern Colony
6 August: Wicklow Way track from Boranaraltry Bridge
3 September: Massy’s Wood
Contact Margaret Wynne and Jean Hickey.