Groups of staff from the Hillwalk Tours office recently visited some of our various walking trail regions. The initiative was called ‘Take A Hike!’, and it was used for everyone, no matter what department they worked in, to get more familiar with the walking routes that we offer. One group hiked part of the Dingle Way.
This is their story.
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Day One – 11th September
The Starting Points
Day one of every hiking tour is travelling to the starting point. For Team Dingle, this was Annascaul on the Dingle Peninsula.
The first stage involved the team getting from their various starting points to the starting point of the trail. Richard and Alex carpooled, Ann drove, while Hauke hopped on a train.
The agreed meeting point was Tralee, the capital town of Kerry. From there, they made their way to Annascaul.
Like many small, rural villages in Ireland, the centre of Annascaul village is simply a row of buildings along the main road.
Annascaul Village, the lake and Inch beach
Upon arrival, the Team checked into their B&Bs, had a chat with the B&B owners and decided to explore the local area. Luckily, they had two cars available to them.
Annascaul Lake was a short drive from the village, down small rural laneways. The lake itself was choppy owing to the wind which was gathering strength around them.
They snapped a few pictures and hopped back in the car to explore the nearby Inch beach.
Inch beach had spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean, sand as far as the eye could see and waves that looked perfect for surfing.
Unfortunately, the surfing rentals were already closed for the day.
Instead, the Team went for a stroll, admired the view, practiced a few cartwheels and headed back to Annascaul for some dinner.
The South Pole Inn
The South Pole Inn in Annascaul houses a lot of memorabilia that commemorates Tom Crean, the Antarctic explorer.
Tom opened the South Pole Inn in the 1920s following Antarctic expeditions under the guidance of both Captain Scott and Ernest Shackleton. Both expeditions were ill-fated, however Tom survived them both before returning to Annascaul.
The Team settled here for the evening, enjoying hearty meals that would set them up for the next day’s hiking.
Stories and tales flowed and excitement about their upcoming adventure gradually bubbled.
They eventually turned in to get a good night’s sleep in preparation for the hike the following day.