Ireland

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Ireland

Post  boabythunder on Fri Nov 06 2009, 21:40

ok im quite new to biking compared to most and this might seem a run round the block but im just writing about the highlights of a a good trip to ireland i had with 2 friends a few months ago.

i was surprised to find on booking that you never needed a passport as mines was expired and had never been to ireland before.

we got the ferry from troon to larne it was supposed to be 10 oclock sailing but was delayed untill 12.30 so there is a morrisons a stones throw away from the ferry terminal - a quick buzz round there while it was quiet to get the fry-ups before eveyone else had the same idea. soon after it got very busy with other ppl getting the same idea. we met a few bikers that were also on our ferry.

back to the ferry--- the bikes are allowed to filter up to the front to be loaded then you strap them yourself to a railing on the boat vehicle deck with the aid of rope and bits of carpet to place on the bike where the rope or railing could scratch. the ferry had adequate toilets ,food and coffee etc and a smoking deck near the bridge. an hour and 45 mins later took us to larne .

from larne we took the antrim coast road which i seen voted one of the top 10 biking roads in the world on the aa website or somewhere.

lots of tourist attractions on the road which goes on for over a hundred miles i think, the giants causway / carrick a ferry rope bridge etc! it was lashing it down so we just bypassed them and headed to our first youth hostel in londonderry, paddys palace it was called and was run by a couple of cool aussies, the hostel was right on the town centre and basic but done the job for £15 a night including basic breakfast (toast and cereal) but the kitchen was there to bring your own stuff if needed. we went out and had a good night on the town and the next morning went to wetherspoons for a early fry up. what i thought was weird is that at 10am wetherspoons was the only place that was opened followed by a papershop across the road. it was as if the town was shut down on a sunday. The sainsburys didnt open till 1pm on the sunday.

off to the south heading for dublins aire square to another hostel but the rain came on big style and we got into the south where my bike started developing some problems - i felt the chain snatching with every revolution and found it to be the front sprocket nut loosened letting the chain move unparallel and hit the frame ripping through the scott oiler tube and one of the links became kinked or siezed as i could feel it under leveling out of throttle. a quick repair at the roadside and heading further south when 10 mins later one of the header gaskets blew and almost at the same time my speedo drive got very noisy with loss of speedo following. as the weather was grim to say the least and i got the feeling my bike wouldnt make it we made a decision to head to belfast and got on the phone to book another hostel. well on the way back north i got seperated and got into a flap in omagh where i basically dropped the bike while trying to remove my helmet quick and answer the phone to get back together with the guys. so a broken clutch lever , getting late and dark no bike shops open and no chance of a road side repair. drove without a clutch in the dark and rain all the way to belfast to the accommodation , never got there till 11pm signed in and got the bikes into the courtyard that was locked for the night off the road which was a bonus. took a wee walk through the toon centre and again weirdly quiet only seen one pub open , went back to hostel on thier pay as you go internet access to find bike shops for the morning.

the hostel was called irish linen youth hostel and took our euros we were trying to get rid of, at a premium of 14 euros a night no breakfast about 12 quid at exchange rate value would have been 10gbp which is fantastic. we were sleeping in a building they aquired - an old call centre with loads of phone jacks in the wall and all that jazz filled with loads of beds,

next morning off to hein gerieck where the tyres were cold took a junction banged it into second gear and done what we named as an IJS ( irish junction slide) dont worry only my pride was hurt. hein gerieck were excellent they never had the exact lever but got a near match went to the honda garage next door for a loan of a grinder took my bike into the shop and modified the lever to fit the bracket so i could have a very slight clutch to get back on to the ferry that was booked that day. i went and got them biscuits and bought a tank bag etc and when home sent them a bottle of single malt for thanks.

so i wont waffle on anymore --- that was a load of experience gained in my biking infancy and cant wait till next year to go again take the week and get more done, ireland is great with loads of wee nice towns you pass through and everywhere we stopped felt very welcome.

that trip was in my old bike the suzuki bandit!
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Re: Ireland

Post  Rosco on Fri Nov 06 2009, 22:41

Hi Boaby

Nice write up.....Sounds like you had quite an experience.
I went from a Bandit to the Thundercat too.

I'd love to do a run in Ireland. I don't think I'd get away with it in 2010 as I'm already signed up for the Germany Trip so 2011 would probably be the earliest I could do.
How long did you go for 1st time round?

DO WE HAVE ANY IRISH MEMBERS ON THE SITE?

Anyone fancy an IRISH rideout sometime?

Cheers
Rosco
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Re: Ireland

Post  boabythunder on Sat Nov 07 2009, 11:17

the ferry tickets had to be booked and sent out to us weeks before,they were for saturday morning till monday night - ferrywas meant to be 10am arriving in larne not long after 12 and the return ticket was 5.30pm on the monday but a small delay followed by a rough sea return we never got back to troon till 830 screamed down the m77 and home for 9.pm.
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Re: Ireland

Post  Dirt Bike Dave on Sat Nov 07 2009, 18:17

Anyone fancy an IRISH rideout sometime?

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Re: Ireland

Post  ellie on Sun Nov 08 2009, 09:12

Id love to 'do' Ireland, but I think by the time we've done Cyprus/BC/TOL and hopefully a couple of weeks somewhere exotic to maybe celebrate a particular 'milestone' whistle Nick may have spent all his holidays! I however, have holidays aplenty, but a child to palm off on someone!!


Again, 2011 may be better for us. hopefully the Euro may have improved by then!!!


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Re: Ireland

Post  kwakkat on Sun Nov 08 2009, 20:51

well i never to be sure was thinking of doing a paddy run and will see how things go
work wise
also going to cyprus bc & tol this year hopefully aya napa here we come lol
pete
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Ireland

Post  terry lees on Fri Dec 18 2009, 14:26

would'nt mind a few days, possibly a week. Terry
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Ireland

Post  Ulstwarrior on Sun Aug 21 2011, 23:36

Hi ya, I live in Ireland.... well Northern Ireland.... we have a vibrant strong biking community and some cracking and challenging bits of road.

Getting off the ferry in either Belfast or Larne the old town of Carrickfergus is a good starting point with its Norman castle. head north and follow the coast line round there are lots of little traditional bars which serve up a good Ulster fry up for about a fiver. there are plenty of wee touristy things to see and do. If u look out to sea you will see an island in the distance - Mull of Kintyre. there is a coastal walk at larrybane and carrick a rede which is accessed by a rope bridge and plenty of stop off points. Follow the coastal road into bushmills - whiskey has been brewed here since 1608 and u get a free sample - Ulster measures are 35ml, opt for the black bushmills, very smooth. there is a nice wee spot in ballintoy to rest over or grab a meal, the Fullerton arms, nice bar with open log/turf fire very homely atmosphere. Ride on round the coast and you come to Portrush the home of the North West 200 Road Races, next up is Portstewart, the bikes park up on the promenade and we grab coffee and food in the Bon Apetit care. the craic here is good and quite a few bike stories are chatted over. From here head to Coleraine, take the coast road to Downhill - lovely sandy beach, from here you can look straight across the narrows into county donegal. Ride on up the coast road and you come to Limavady, another good eating spot, can recommend a drink in Orrs bar, but beware the locals are bike mad and will chat for hours. From limavady head to Londonderry/Derry, nice walk around the old city walls, lots of history in this town. Word of advice when on the city side the ie you cross the foyle bridge, the locals always call the town Derry.

From Derry/Londonderry a good run is to head for Strabane and Omagh, nicely situated in the west of the province among the Sperrin mountains, you can head along the glenelly valley to draperstown or visit the Ulster American folk park. From Omagh its a very short trip into Enniskillen in county Fermanagh with its lakes, upper and lower lough erne. boat trips and nice spots to eat are plentiful in this area. from here I would usually head west into ballyshanon in co. donegal and from here head north back to derry or go south into sligo etc. Alternatively from enniskillen head west this will take you into county armagh, the boyne valley in co. meath and the Mourne mountains from co. Down. From these points its a straight run south into dublin.

Food for thought, anyone planning a trip to this side of the pond give me a shout and i will offer wot advice i can.

Cheers

John clink
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Re: Ireland

Post  0ldcat on Mon Aug 22 2011, 08:43

Nice write up John, your descriptiond made it feel almost like being there. great

As you'll have probably read above there have been thoughts kicked about for doing a run over in ~ to, Ireland for some time.
Clearly it would be more than a day trip for anyone other than you local guys.

We've recently had a few members come on board from your (what sounds from your descriptions) beautiful region. Can I be real cheeky and suggest you might like to get your heads together and sponsor a "Something for the Weekend" run.
Local knowledge is after all a big bonus when it comes to finding B&B's, routes, eateries, watering holes etc etc.

Cheers
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Re: Ireland

Post  YZFJohn on Mon Aug 22 2011, 09:02

I would like to make it, I have a good client down Airport Road West, Belfast and promised I would come across to see them on the bike. Must admit that with how much I have spent on biking this year I may not be able to make it till next year!
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Re: Ireland

Post  Ulstwarrior on Fri Aug 26 2011, 12:24

Tel, Im out of the bike club scene over 20 years now but just recently got back into it making new buddies and contacts so something could be arranged for next year campsite, bbq music put on 2-3 day event with assistance from one of the local bike clubs. Its something which i can look at.

Generally we use rugby clubs during the summer for rallies etc, works well. I dont know a great deal about irish republic dont b there that much but know plenty of good routes n ride outs throughout N. Ireland if any of the folk are into road racing maybe we could pick a time round the North West 200 next May.

Anyway lots of food for though over the long dark winter months.
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Re: Ireland

Post  0ldcat on Fri Aug 26 2011, 14:33

Hi John,
Thanks for the reply.
something could be arranged for next year campsite, bbq music put on 2-3 day event with assistance from one of the local bike clubs. Its something which i can look at.Generally we use rugby clubs during the summer for rallies etc, works well.
Ooooh , nothing quite so fancy or complicated. Though I'm sure that would be fantastic deal

I've sent you a PM great

cheers
Tel

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