|T-shirts and shorts for the first time in years|
|Leaving the inner bay past Inishoo and Croagh Patrick|
We sailed out in beautiful weather though not much wind. In fact it was glass calm. So we motored most of the way to Clare Island, our destination for the June Bank Holiday weekend.
|Hazy, hot and humid view toward Clare Island|
|Our first night's feast|
We decided dinner on board would be ideal for our first major cruise of the season. I had brought along a lobster and it made for a festive first meal. A bit of harbour watching and reading afterwards, then off to bed in the rocking cradle.
|Beachgoers on Clare Island's Blue Flag beach|
|We did an 8 km walk from the harbour in the East to the tower in the West|
|Spectacular views toward Inishturk, Caher, and Bofin|
We ate our apples and granola bars and drank our water before returning back the way we came while Ian and Ann made their way up over the mountain. We watched what looked like five eagles soaring high above and Alex almost stepped on a skylark fledgling trying hard to be invisible.
|Walking along the base of Knochmore|
No dinner ashore that day. The Sailors Bar was booked out. We'd be back the next day for a MSC BBQ and prize giving. So back to Aleria and our favourite boat meal, spaghetti bolognase.
The next morning we watched the fleet arrive and start preparations for the Around Clare Island Race in light air. Crew was arriving on the morning ferry, which was jam packed with tourists once again. And before long they were off! It was lovely to see them sail off and lovely to see them return to fill the harbour with sailboats. We were content to stay behind and document the event with photography without even stirring from the boat. Heaven on earth, that's what it's like on a boat anchored in a pretty place.
Before long we were all heading home on our own schedules. We tried to sail but it was no use. We gave in and motored over to check out Mulranny while we awaited the turn of the tide so we could get to our mooring in Ross. It was a wonderful summer's holiday and we're now looking forward to many more.
|The ruined signal tower|
|Ann and Ian explaining how they first met|
|On top of the world|
|Mayo Sailing Club fleet in the annual Around Clare Island Race|
|MSC fleet moored in the harbour|
|Jarlath Cunnane's beautiful new schooner, Mac Lir|