Friday, February 5, 2010

Another Walk Along Lough Graney, County Clare....

Buster showing off his dancing skills!

Another Adventurous Walk

Well I did say in the last post that I loved walking by Lough Graney - and I took a mega walk this time with Buster. The weather hadn't been great and suddenly the sun came out - yesterday that is. (Wednesday). Inevitably this post will be picture loaded - you have been warned! I headed the short way past Kevin the farmer's house to the fishing stand behind it. Gosh, it's really wobbly - I think the ice must have caused some damage, look at it now:

I suppose it belongs to the local authority. I had better let them know and hope they can repair it.

I thought I'd walk a little way along the shore towards Dillons' Wood as the water had receded. The alder trees have started to produce new catkins and they're a pinky colour.

Is Spring around the corner?

The lake was pretty still and Flagmount looked like its usual patchwork quilt of colours:

We passed an old, gnarled tree, covered in lichen:

Some of it was pink. I don't know whether it's the new or old growth:

As I had my wellington boots on, I was able to keep going along the shore and, where the shoreline disappeared, I paddled in the water to reach the next piece of dry land. These are the next 2 inlets:

The sun even had some warmth in it. It was a good day to be walking by Lough Graney and Buster thought so too, exploring new smells as he ran along.

Buster loves to run along the rock promontories

I just managed to catch this shot of him jumping along the rocks!

Around another outcrop and this view appeared:

I paddled my way around both these outcrops and turned back to see that the fishing stand was way back in the distance! If you enlarge the following photo, you can just see it:

There was no turning back, so I ploughed on and hoped I'd be able to strike inland and get up to the road if I needed to.

As I clambered by another old tree, I saw this fresh fungi - another sign of warmth:

As I reached the next inlet, I realised where I was in relation to the road. From the road, Jim and I have always been fascinated by what appear to be a couple of little ponds that look man made. Well, I was right there. This is what it looks like from the road, using a telephoto lens:

So I had walked around that sticking out section on the right and came upon the little wall, which Buster walked across, but I daren't! I had to come inland a bit and plough through the thick mud! I managed to get my rather stuck wellingtons free by wiggling them and reached the other side - it was a bit hair raising! I must ask the farmer Francee what the ponds were made for. Maybe the wall was to keep the lake back and now it's fallen into disrepair.

Here are the little ponds from my level, as I came round the corner. The diagonal wall is the one Buster climbed across.
Now I'm on the other side, which took about 15 minutes through the mud! Still, I made it and Dillons' Wood was in sight. I knew if I reached that, I could go up through the fields to the road, and walk back that way.

I passed another little inlet with a large rock in the centre of it.

I made a photo merge with a view of the ponds and over to Flagmount:

Do click on it to enlarge the view.

I was then able to walk across the first field until I reached another of Martin's fields, which is next to the wood. Buster ran across the fields like a puppy. At the bottom of Martin's field are the remains of 2 cars. When we first moved here, you could see them from the road and they were quite whole. Now they are in bits. What a mess:

As you can see, Buster was curious as always.

What a contrast - the mess left by a human and nature's beauty - Lough Graney behind.

Buster disturbed a load of ducks we had heard as we walked and they all swam out towards the safety of the lake centre. It was a veritable convoy!

They made such a racket! I love the different shades of the water in this shot.

Nearly there now. Buster and I headed up the steep slope to the top of Martin's field and the road. He wanted to carry on through Dillon's wood but I told him my legs were just too tired and he happily followed me along the road and back home. It only takes about 20 minutes that way! I had been out 2 hours.

As we passed the O'Brien's bungalow, where there are 2 of Buster's doggy friends, another little chap appeared, keen to make friends too:

Isn't he cute? He was desperate to say hi to me too, but Buster wouldn't let him. He is such a jealous thing at times.

Well, considering I took 185 photos in total, I think I did quite well to cull them to only 20. I do hope you've enjoyed our adventure. I don't think I'll go that way again in a hurry as the boggy part was too difficult to cross, but I'm glad I managed it once.

Today we went to Tralee - but that's another story.


DK Leather said...

wow, what fabby pictures, especially the amazing shots of Buster!

Such a lovely walk, wish I'd been there :D x

Leatherdykeuk said...

Splendid pictures.

Perhaps the ponds are for fish breeding.

BT said...

Thanks K and Rachel. Hmm, that's an interesting thought Rachel.

Heather said...

Wonderful lichens, fungi and alder catkins and glorious views as always. It's hard going walking in wellingtons - you must have given your legs a good work out!

WanderingWelly said...

These are grand photos indeed!

Lisa at Greenbow said...

A delightful walk. I am glad you took us with you. Buster looks like King of the mountain.

BT said...

Thank you Heather, it is indeed hard work but necessary when by the lake! At least I had something to grab hold of when my wellies got stuck!!

Thank you WanderingWelly!

Ha ha Lisa, Buster thinks he's King of the world and we're certainly his servants!

Heckety said...

Fabulous photos, as usual! And lovely to get a bit of sun too.

Mildred said...

I enjoyed the walk/photos so much. The pic of Buster with his reflection in the water is a real winner. Hope you get many more chances to get out and walk - I always enjoy the beautiful photography.