Downpatrick Head, Co Mayo

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One of my favourite places on the planet.

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This is the sea stack, known as Dun Briste. Photo taken by iDJ last summer, a much brighter day. It’s also my background on my iPad.

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Two weeks ago.

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It was warm, and not too windy, so I got closer to the edge than I ever did before. I think all the ladders at work have helped me get over my fear of heights.

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All taken lying on my stomach, looking over. I felt pretty safe.

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A man fishing over the edge! That takes talent. Even on a not-so-windy day, it has to be hard to cast out so far into the Atlantic from a huge cliff. We saw him reel up something that looked an awful lot like a shark, too. But hard to say from such a distance.

I was rather worried when I heard that the Council is ‘developing’ the site. It’s wild and natural and I didn’t like the idea of anyone screwing with it. They have started already.

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Walking up: that wasn’t there before. They have raised an earthen rampart around the blowhole.

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It has a viewing platform now. Do you see all the foam in the blowhole? That will be important later.

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View of the overlook and blowhole from further up the hill.

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Yeah, heavily fenced off. Well, the blowhole was fenced off before – just not as prettily. Still, I fail to see the point of fencing off a hole when there are miles of cliff-face all around with a raging Atlantic right there. I’m really hoping they don’t fence all that off, too: like they did with the Cliffs of Moher.

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Me! That’s where I took most of my over-the-edge pics from. In no danger, unless a huge collapse happened.
Which, of course, it might. And then some lawyer-happy-jackoff will sue the County. But… will the leeches be more likely to sue before they put up fences or after? Right now the place is still wild – and you damn well know it. If you fall off, it’s your own damn fault. Once there are fences: well then, the government didn’t protect you enough so you deserve money for being stupid. You can see they are placing fence-posts there, well behind where I’m lying.
Sigh.

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That’s also me. I scared my friend by walking there – but it was entirely stable and clearly the sheep fed there quite often. What’s that on my shoe? Awwww, dammit.

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My view of the same area as above. See? Perfectly safe. Because it wasn’t windy and I’m not a goddamned idiot.

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Ah, the foam! Even on such a calm day, the ocean coming in under the cliff and the way the tide was flowing meant there was a good amount of sea-foam being thrown into the air. I really wish I could have videoed it!

20 responses »

  1. This place is mesmerizing- totally smashingly wonderful. I do hope they don’t mess it all up. Wild places need to be left wild to remind us….it’s not Disneyland. They will have more trouble/people hurt with fences.
    Awesome place

  2. I love Ireland. I love your pictures. I hate that wild places need to be tamed because of idiots. Please keep taking pictures. Sligo is where my great grandmother came from. I visited there in 197l and was entranced by the deep greens and rough sea and the wonderful people.

    • My goodness. I was busy being born in 1971. You would find some changes here now, a bust, a boom and a bust have all come and gone (still a bit burst at the moment). Sligo is a good neighbour to Mayo, not like those Dublin or Kerry counties. :) Glad you liked my photos, I don’t get out too much but I always seem to find something lovely when I do.

Thoughts? Gardening tips? Cocktail recipes? Don't just like and leave, please - I can talk for Ireland and would love to prove it!

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