TLDR- Todays Dad kids adventure – bike ride to Glencree river where we played in the water and sand, hiked a bit and had a picnic lunch. On the way, we stopped by EnissKerry to check out the movie set
Ridding to the River
Saturday morning we packed up food, change of clothes, towels, and swimsuits before setting off towards Glencree around 0930. I’m hauling three girls in the cargo bike. The girls have a bluetooth speaker and phone with in the cargo box. They are planning to rock out along the way. Maddex is hauling everything else in saddlebags and a backpack on the back of his bike. Maddex and I have our ride to rider radio’s we’ll sing to each other along the way. This will be our first adventure in the new cargo bike, a good test of its range.
With the 2 X 500watt hour batteries the Kaboomer bike, as Mila calls it, should be able to travel over 100km with cargo. The ride is about 18km one way which should be simple. The bike is rated for 60kg of capacity the girls come in at about 50kg between the three of them; giving us kilograms to spare. On the road, Maddex is in the lead receiving directions from dad via the helmet radios – love being able to talk to Maddex while we ride.
The ride was mostly flat until the midpoint and our first stop in Enniskerry. The Disney movie Disencanted is being filmed in the town. For the movie set they’ve built a castle and reworked most of the storefronts to present more of a Disney fantasy look. We walked around the tiny town taking pictures and checking out the sets. The town was packed with people invests working on the movie and tourists checking out the set. Our main interest, the Centra, was still open. We stopped in for drinks and a treat for out picnic lunch later.
The hill leaving Enniskerry was steep, almost 45 degrees and it felt like it went on forever. Even with a maximum assist, it was a hill I wanted to walk the bike up. Maddexs breathing was loud in the helmet radio, you could tell he was working hard. The girls oblivious to the work of the hill were signing to baby shark while Maddex and I were pumping the pedals. I was trying to go fast enough to keep the bike from falling over sideways. Wow what a hill. The rest of the ride was up and down with some small hills, thankfully none as bad as this hill.
Made it to the River – playtime
The last 2k are all downhill on a gravel logging road with switchbacks. Feels like the login trails I used to 4×4 on as a kid. Should be fun ridding back up on a bicycle loading with girls. The hills make me thankful for the massive lithium electron storage and electric motor on the Kaboomer bike. The logging trail ends at a large turn around. About 50 meters from the turn around down a trail is a sandy beach at the rivers edge; perfect spot. Straight away Maddex is taking his clothing off getting in his swimshorts working up the nerve to deal with the river water.
The kids have all touched the water and discovered it’s not warm, it’s cold. The river is also dark water, the kids call it Coke water because it looks like Cola. The sun is not out yet making the cold water ever more daunting. Eventually, after working up to it Maddex is diving into the water with his diving mask on checking out the stream bed. While he’s doing that Khaleesi and Mila have crossed the river on some rocks wading in the shallows. On the other side, they hike up a trail exploring the hillside. Roxi is with me digging in the sand. The kids are in their happy place having a great time. I’ve found a nice tree to sit under where I can watch the kids waiting for them to call out my name to show me something.
After the cold becomes too much the kids dry off a bit and start digging in the sand, the sun is out now it’s easy to warm up. We didn’t bring shovels, so they are digging with their hands at first. Maddex found a nice stick while I started cutting up our drink bottles to make shovels. The kids dug together in the sand for a good half hour while I typed up this blog post. Kids playing and running water are a peaceful soundtrack. The sand was followed by food and more playing in the river. Only one injury, Khaleesi feel and hit her knee on a rock. Scratch and some blood, a tear or three, a snuggle with dad and she was good as new back on the rocks.
All played out around 15:00 the kids were ready to head home. One by one they sat down on a rock and let me wash the sand off their feet with water in a water bottle before putting their shoes and dry outfits on. We packed up and loaded the bikes. A few times on the ride here my helmet microphone cut out. As we departed with our helmets on the mic was not working at all. Taking the radio apart turns out one of the wires for the mic has come loose – Sad face we’re going to ride home with me being able to hear Maddex and Maddex unable to hear me. Oh well not much we do – lets go. With an average speed of about 7Kph we slowly crawled up the gravel logging trail to the tarmac.
Coming in we saw no one else. Leaving we encountered a number of families heading out to hike or camp. We passed one family clearly set up camp overnight walking right next to a sign the says no camping at all permitted – Le sigh. We took a slightly different route home. The route took us up a hill steeper than steep. I tried with all I had but ended up asking the girls to get out of the bin and pushed the bike a bit, then had them follow as I rode, slowly. Seemed like years climbing that hill before it leveled out enough the girls were able to load back in. After running up the hill the girls settled in and passed out.
At Enniskerry we hit a major traffic backup. Most of it we were able to bypass on the shoulder until we arrived at the worst it. Somehow it’s ok in Ireland to park anywhere, evening the middle of the road. People were parking their cars in the middle of the lanes to get out and explore the city. Making it nearly impossible to pass. I feel bad for the people in cars they are going to be traped for a long time. Maddex and I weaved through traffic and the town and skipped most of it. About 20 minutes past the traffic jam we stopped at a SPAR for treats. We hit the jackpot; the SPAR has soft serve. Five Ice cream cones please! Maddex and I finished our cones first. We all loaded up in the bikes for home, the girls are going to finish their cones on the way.
What a mess. Mila’s long hair was flying all over the place getting people’s ice cream, a big hit someone’s ice cream, Roxi tossed some of hers on me jerking her cone around trying to avoid the flying hair. Oh boy, so much excitement. Mom was tracking our journey home on her phone. I guess the dog heard Mila screaming before we made it into the estate, got up, and ran to the door. Between GPS tacking, Mila screaming and the dog – Michelle and Cheif met us in the street. Such a tremendous journey !! we are going to start having bike ride adventures all summer long.