Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Ireland Trip Part 40: Intro to Dingle Peninsula, Inch Beach and Hero Frog!

View from the Dingle Peninsula's Inch Beach
This is part 40 of our Ireland trip (although we were physically there 9 days). Today we take on on the start of our tour of the famous Dingle Peninsula. The Dingle Peninsula is the northernmost of the major peninsula in County Kerry, Ireland. It ends beyond the town of Dingle at Dunmore Head, the westernmost point of Ireland and Europe!  It faces the Atlantic Ocean on Ireland's western side.

BEST KILLARNEY TOUR GUIDE EVER! - Across the Pond Vacations set us up with tour guide Gerard Scott of Killarney guided tours. You can find him at: http://killarneyguidedtours.biz/.  We learned that Gerard is also a singer and performer with the "Celtic Steps.' He enjoys singing Neil Diamond and John Denver songs, and so do we, so it was even more fun! Her recommended a couple of movies that we're going to check out: Ryan's Daughter, Michael Collins (with Liam Neeson) and Quiet Man (with John Wayne).  
So, over the next several blogs, you'll read and see the Great Blasket Islands, the site of the Spanish Armada's fateful route, the spectacular Slea Head and so much more. We also got a bite to eat in charming Dingle Town. Gerard knows his geography and history like no other. He also knows the roads, do we didn't have to worry about trying to negotiate the winding Irish roads around the peninsula. 

CASTLEMAINE HARBOR- This harbor in the beginning of the southern end of the Peninsula is where ocean farmers harvest mussels. 

HERO FROG - Gerard told us the developers wanted to make a large part of Inch Beach into a large golf course. When a Natterjack Toad was found there, the site could not be developed. 

WHAT IS A NATTERJACK TOAD? - This toad is native to sandy and heathland areas of Europe. Adults are 60–70 mm in length and are distinguished from common toads by a yellow line down the middle of the back, and parallel paratoid glands. They have relatively short legs, and this gives them a distinctive gait, contrasting with the hopping movement of many other toad species. Natterjacks have a very loud and distinctive mating call, amplified by the single vocal sac found under the chin of the male.

Natterjack Toad

WHERE ELSE ARE THEY FOUND? -  Populations of the natterjack extend through 17 European countries. In the British Isles the toad is almost completely confined to coastal sites. The natterjack is the only species of toad native to Ireland. It is found on the Dingle peninsula and at Derrynane in County Kerry, and also in County Wexford .
BLUSTERY INCH BEACH  - Inch Beach is in Ireland's County Kerry. The beach is a sand spit jutting into the sea between Dingle Harbour and Castlemaine Harbour, where "Ryan's Daughter" was famously filmed. When we arrived, it was an extraordinarily windy day. Sustained winds were about 60 mph- tropical storm strength! Of course, the surf was extraordinarily rough. As we stood on the beach we got sandblasted by the strong winds kicking up sand.Fortunately, there was a little restaurant on the beach, so we went inside for some tea and scones so we could watch the waves and wind.

INCH BEACH'S DOLPHIN - Gerard told us that there was a dolphin named "Fungi" that keeps returning to Inch beach and nearby Dingle Harbor because tourists keep feeding him.
VIDEO:  https://youtu.be/y_d8Enzh3-Y


Gift/Memorial Suggestions

Several of our friends have lost loved ones (human and pets) and we found that one of the best ways to honor their memory is to give to an animal charity.
What better way to recognize a life of love, than by giving another life a chance for love?
We donate to many animal rescues, but because we volunteer with
DC Weimaraner Rescue and Coast-to-Coast Dachshund Rescue, those are our 2 favorites.
Consider giving the chance of life to a dog or cat.

About us

We're two married guys who enjoy the simple things in life, especially our dogs. We volunteer for dog rescues, enjoy splitting dinners, exercising, blogging, helping friends and neighbors, ghost investigations, coffee and tea, Tudor history, weather, superheroes, comic books, mystery novels, traveling, 70s and 80s music, classic country, piano, gardening, writing books on ghosts and spirits, architecture, keeping a clean house, cooking simply, and keeping in shape. You'll find tidbits of all of these things on this blog and more.

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!
Wondering what home project to do next