A great trip this, in theory. A bus ride from Kilarney (Cill Áirne) to the bottom of the Gap of Dunloe. A jaunting car ride up over the pass into Black Valley. Followed by a boat trip back down through the three Kilarney Lakes. (See the Killarney Day Tours site for a routemap.) Or at least it would have been if this chap with a digger hadn't needed to cut a trench across the main road through the town.
This being Ireland, where (in 1998) such things a regarded as optional, he had decided to dispense with such time wasting niceties as traffic lights, road signs and barriers, and just get on with the job. The resulting traffic chaos was truly impressive.
However, after about an hour our mini-bus finally got through, and we were on our way. Albeit very slowly.
Things speeded up when we reached Kate Kearney's Cottage at the foot of the Gap of Dunloe and transferred to a jaunting car.
It is also possible to borrow a pony and ride through the gap. But, as far as I could see, the ponies knew exactly what they had to do and entirely ignored their riders. Continued...