For what must have been the fiftieth time that afternoon, I tugged my hood as far over my eyes as physically possible and wiped a good inch of rainwater off my chin, with the now soaked cuff of my jacket.
Although it was early June, the sun was engulfed by a thick pillow of cigarette-like cloud.
As we marched past the inviting windows of Kate Kearney’s Cottage, the Heavens opened, and a cocktail of thunderous winds and torrential rain clattered against us, each drop like a mini liquid torpedo.
Thankfully, after an hour of cursing and battling the elements, the rain eased off, and we finally had the chance to whip down our hoods and soak up the scenery that lay all around us.
The Gap of Dunloe is special. There’s no other way of putting it.
We strolled along the black tarmac road for just over an hour, admiring the mountains that hugged the valley on each side, while enjoying the soothing clip-clopping that sang from the horse and carts that ambled by every couple of minutes.
A trip here is like a shot of adrenaline for the senses.
It’s hard to articulate it, but walking through the Gap of Dunloe gave me a real sense of life.
The smells that your nose is only ever treated to while out in the fresh, unspoiled country air, combined with the constant rush of wind against my face was like a reawakening, of sorts.
The Gap of Dunloe – how’d it form?
Around two million years ago, Killarney’s ice age took hold, lasting until around 10,000BC.
As the snow and ice was steadily pushed northward through the Killarney Valley, it gave the mountains their distinct, jagged appearance, forming what we now know as the Gap of Dunloe.
If you’re visiting Kerry, this place is a must.