The Solitary Cyclist in Ireland

Sometime in late 1994 or early 1995 in New York City, I bought a touring bike, a Trek 525, with the intention of touring parts of Western Ireland that I knew to be Yeat’s country. A novice at touring, I did know I would be facing wind, rain, and hills, so I began training in earnest around New York, riding mostly in the hills of Northern New Jersey. By degrees, I loaded my panniers with more and more weight, and picked rainy days and hills to accustom myself to the rigors I would encounter in Ireland. When the time came, I disassembled my bike and packed it in cardboard. Aer Lingus was good about checking my bike and gear, and the Shannon Airport authorities had no problem letting me assemble my bike in a quiet corner and even stored my packing materials until I returned. What follows are the notes I made in my travel journal of that adventure. Fortunately, I took photos with my Nikon SLR, and I’ve used some to illustrate my notes.

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