I was back in Ireland and with me, a new ‘side kick’ … Tammy. Her request was to begin the trip in the Wicklow Mountains. She had read about Irish frogs and wanted to find a few. Initially, she also wanted to bring a few home. Good news for all! For Tammy – County Wicklow is reported to have the second highest population of frogs. For the frogs – they are a protected species, so they are not going anywhere. And for me – we are flying home on different dates … no worries with customs!
Unfortunately, there were no frogs to be found. What we did find was heather covered mountains. I never associated heather with Ireland. It was a perfect background color for the start of fall as the mountains all had a purple hue to them.
We ended up on Sally Gap Pass. The best way to describe this to those thinking about visiting … it is the middle road across the mountains (R759). I would question the designation of a ‘Regional’ road, because it really looked like a ‘Local’ road to me! It had been nine months since I had driven in Ireland and I was quickly regaining my skill set. It did require a few u-turns, pulling over to check the map and a few missed roads.
I also discovered that Tammy loves water, especially waterfalls. So, as I focused on keeping the car on the road (and sneaking a peak at the scenery), I would hear … water! It meant that I needed to rethink the concept of parking and become okay with ‘parking’ mostly on the road. I admit, it makes me nervous. I am okay with another Irish driver, but other tourists…. I have not lost a side mirror yet!
The landscape was breathtaking. I had been on the Wicklow Gap Pass before, but this landscape seemed bigger … bolder. Colors were obviously changing as golds began to emerge. We even found some waterfalls along the way! It was a cloudy day with rain making its presence known every couple of hours. But, it didn’t take away from the beauty of it all!