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Gap of Dunloe

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About half-way up the valley there is a steep section where our driver assured us that, "people like to get out and walk the next bit to give the horse a rest."

It quickly became apparent that it was a case of "have" not "like" as it is quite a steep climb.

He also assured us that if we stood on the bridge that takes the road across the stream with our hands on the cap stone of the central pillar looking down the valley, any wish we made would come true. A touch of the blarney there, I reckon.

On reaching the more level ground, we rejoined our jaunting car, and carried on through the upper part of the valley to the foot of the pass, where a series of hairpin bends worthy of a minor Swiss alp takes the road over the pass and into the remote Black Valley.

Black Valley is certainly remote and not without its moments, but compared to the scenery in the Gap it has to be said that it comes as a bit of an anti-climax. A nice steady trot down a gently sloping incline followed by a sharp turn back down the valley to Lord Brandonʼs Cottage at the head of the Killarney Lakes. And all without the driver even picking up the reins.

After a stop for lunch, itʼs then into the boats for the third leg of the trip. Continued...

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