Today we walked to the Poolbeg Lighthouse. According to the information thing at the start of the walk down the breakwater construction began on the breakwater in 1715, the lighthouse started in 1748, and the project completed in 1795. 80 years of building from wood piles to granite hauled in by barge to a Lighthouse run by candles. See image of sign for more details, if you’re interested, it has far more information than Wikipedia.
Friday, after discussing what to do with a nice day on Saturday, we decided we’d walk to the lighthouse. Using the telescope at work the lighthouse is visible in the harbour. I’ve been wanting to make out there for a while now, but it’s been too cold and windy to suffer the kids through the trip. The plan is to Luas into town, then walk east to the lighthouse; pretty simple, without much planning at all. We’ll have a picnic lunch at the lighthouse, hang out for a bit then walk home. I made lunch before the kids had breakfast – Ham and cheese, peanut butter and Jelly, cookie butter on rice cakes, fish crackers, water, and some honey roasted peanuts – Nothing special. Maddex originally wanted a ham sandwich like he has for lunch. While I was making it he says ” Dad I want peanut butter and Jelly instead. I can’t have them at school and they sound great” – Peanuts kills kids in todays world, so no peanuts at school, sad face.
We had breakfast and were out the door around 0900. The kids held it together until about Harcourt Luas stop where we finally said F-it the kids have been forced to sit still long enough and we got off the train to start the walking. Our route took us along the canal, next to Aviva stadium, along the beach, then along a trail to the lighthouse. The first big stop was the canal where we took out our magnets and went fishing for metal.
Fishing for Euros
We’re currently using a bright rainbow paracord as line for the magnets and boy howdy does the rope want to tangle no matter how I try to manage it. We’ll probably switch to a poly rope next time we do any fishing. We have a magnet on a long 20-meter line and another on a short 2-meter line. Mila and mom were on the short line and Maddex and I were working the long line. Maddex and I came back with some pipes, and bolts and iron ore but nothing too exciting. Mila was dragging along a dock area and came up with the best find of the day; a Euro 20.
All of the Euro coins are slightly magnetic. The copper 1,2 and 5 cent coins being the most magnetic. The 1 and 2 euro coins are only slightly magnetic. The Magnets we are using are rated at 200# of lifting force. They will pull up copper coins no problem, and Euros if nothing else knocks them off while dragging. Mila hit the jackpot and pulled two only slightly magnetic coins at once.
Walking in the Sand
After an hour or so of tossing the magnets in the water, we resumed our walking. Other then the girls singing not much exciting on the walk. Right before the beach we were walking alongside the Sean Moore park and decided to jump over the wall to walk in the park vs next to the park on a sidewalk. Roxi got out of the backpack and walked for a while in the park. She sure gets excited to have her freedom. Then gets all pissed off when you take it away and put her back in the pack. At the end of the park, the path to the lighthouse starts.
Must have been a low low tide because there was sand out as far the eye could see. Maddex and I were going to cut across the sand and let Michelle and the girls carry on the paved path with the stroller. After some back and forth with the girls trying to decide if they should or should not come with us we all ended up on the sand headed for the evil building. Sand was firm enough at the start to not be a mess, then it started to turn to mud; eww. Eventually, the mud was starting to be too much so we turned towards the path.
Unseen when we embarked on our beach route was a shallow river between the sand and the trail. Maddex was in Keen hiking saddles and walked right through the creek. The girls and Michelle were in shoes that were still almost dry. I took off my shoes and carried Mila across. Maddex carried Khaleesi across, Momma jumped on my back and I carried her across the river. Finally, Maddex came back over one more time to help me carry the stroller across; ahh adventure.
The path by the power plants is mostly paved and no problem for the stroller. The breakwater however is made of large slabs of granite like a cobblestone road; it’s rough on the stroller, and our free stroller is near end of life. At the start of the breakwater are the remains of some concrete walls that used to be something. It’s about noon now and we figure it is time the kids need a break. We sit down on the concrete and have lunch for a bit.
The lighthouse looks like it’s not too far away from here. According to the internets it’s 1.7km from lunch to the lighthouse. About a 1/4 of the way towards the lighthouse we’re about ready to park the stroller to come back for it later because it feels like it might self-destruct at any moment. Michelle notices someone ?swimming? out in the water? 1/2 way out we come upon a big white building. On the side of the building, we read “Half Moon Swimming and Water Polo Club” walking around the building is a guy with a towel and swim trunks. Turns out Michelle did see a swimming. People in Dublin sure seem to enjoy swimming in the freezing ocean. We parked the stroller at the swim club and Khaleesi walked the rest of the way.
Weather is great today. Warmish weather, mostly sunny with some clouds here and there giving us breaks from the sun and a slight breeze. Mila has been in and out of her Jacket and tights most of the walk. All of the kids have wet feet from the mud in the beach. At the lighthouse, the sun is fully blocked by the clouds, and the wind picks up a bit. Both of the girls are shivering from the cold. – We pretty much High five the lighthouse then turn around and start heading back; Oh well, we made it!. On the way back the breeze lets up and the sun comes back out then everyone is warm again, and back in good spirits.
Heading back home – Ice cream
We made it all the way to park before anyone said anything about feet or legs hurting. We’re about 15km into the walk now. Maddex says ” my dogs are barking” meaning his feet are hurting. Khaleesi replies “My dogs are happy I feed them bonies, You should give your dogs treats like me” All in by the time we made it home the kids have walked 22km with nearly no complaining or whining. Extremely impressive. We kept them going on the way back telling them the first shop we walked by that sold ice creme we would buy them ice creme.
About 2k from the LUAS stop we’re headed towards we came across a Spar and bought everyone an ice cream. The Spar had some tables and chairs out front in the shade we sat in where we ate ice creme and the kids covered their faces with ice cream. On one of the tables was a coffee cup Michelle went to toss in the rubbish. When she picked it up she found about a euro in change in the bottom of the cup. I took the change, and added it to our loot, then tossed the cup.
The last few Ks of the walk we’re back in the shade along the canal again. We’re starting to get tired so we skip fishing and carry on directly to the LUAS stop. Michelle checked the LUAS time and it looked like we were going to be just in time for a train; #Fakenews. At the LUAS stop our train keeps switching from due in 11 minutes to due in 13 minutes. All in it takes about 16 minutes for the bloody train to show up. When it shows it’s PACKED. We have to press our way in. The train remains at capacity until we get off near home.
My total step count after we made it home was 31,713 steps @ 22.74KM. Maddex was never in the stroller, Mila was in and out a few times but not for the long. Khaleesi was out of the stroller for a few hours, and Roxi was in and out of the backpack. Super impressed with the kids endurance. After we made it home we ordered some donors, pizza, and chips from San Marinos and lounged around the house until bed time. A well-earned rest.