The day is not perfect, dark clouds and occasional rain, but if you demand good weather before bicycling, you won't do very much. So, off I go to explore the coast road farther south than I had in a couple previous rides.
I'm afraid that I don't document the ride very well. I try to record the route on my GPS receiver, but, because of some technical problems, I lose the recording. Then, because of the weather, I just don't feel like taking a lot of pictures. Still, there are a few; click on a thumbnail to see a larger version of the pictures. Use the back button of your browser to return to this page.
I work my way to the coast road, which goes south through Dalkey, Bray, and Greystones. Bray is a nice looking town, while Greystones is OK, but not very special. South of Greystones, I'm on a minor road, somewhat removed from the coast. I want to get over to Newtown Mt. Kennedy, then work my way north on route R755. Unfortunately, the N11 is a limited-access highway at this point, not safely (or, probably, legally) cyclable. Several alternate roads appear on maps, but they have no route numbers and no roadside signs identify them. Eventually, I decide to risk an unmarked road; it's actually not much of a risk, since it's the only road that looks like it goes anywhere. On my way, I see a dramatic view of the Wicklow Mountains in the distance.
Approaching Newtown Mt. Kennedy, I come across this ruin of a church and cemetery. It strikes me as sad that the cemetery has fallen into disrepair like this. The inscription on the gravestone in the rightmost figure reads, "Here lieth the body of Hugh Doyle, departed this life November **, 1775, aged 5 years." I wonder how many of us will leave a trace of any kind 230 years from now, despite all our glorious accomplishments, while this modest record of a five-year-old child still exists. Doesn't that alone make it worth preserving?
From Newton Mt. Kennedy, I cut across a range of coastal hills to get to the R759 at Roundwood. The road is steep, pushing 10% most of the way, and peaks at a little over 1000 feet. On the way up, a swarm of bugs decides to accompany me, driving me nearly crazy. I don't take any pictures until I reach the downhill and can get away from them. I take only a couple more along the R755.
I intend to switch to the R117 just south of Enniskerry. Unfortunately, I miss the turn on a long, pleasant downhill and find myself again at the N11 freeway at Kilmacanogue. I really don't want to climb back up the hill, so I look for a way back. I again try dead reckoning by unmarked roads, successfully, and enjoy a short but pleasant ride into Enniskerry. From there, it's a straight shot to Stepaside and finally the Dublin area.