We left Murphy's farmhouse after breakfast, some quick route discussion, and bike tuning. The day would be a short day to Killarney requiring about 15 miles.
Killarney is Ireland's largest nationally reserved park for public use. We knew a few details; the park is centered by 3 lakes which are encircled by woods, mountains, and historical sites with walking/biking routes winding throughout the park. For these reasons + we had been riding for 7 days straight, we chose to take our break there (experience taught me that within an 11 day period you need 3 days where you are not packing and toting your gear everyday - aka a break).
But before we could break we had to ride our 15 miles through country side. We had hoped for a flat day but had to conquer 2 large hills. One long and gradual, the other short and steep. The hills are always worth the effort because they generally get us off the busy roads and offer the best views out onto Ireland.
On top of our first hill we met an Irish postman who provided us with some route suggestions for the day. These postman are definitely the most qualified people to be providing anyone with back-road directions. We have later discovered how personal the mail service is in the countryside; there are few addresses so the service requires a knowledge of the people in your area/route. As a result, it seems postman are the most knowledgeable individuals of the areas we have been riding. Now that we know this, it will be a valuable tool if lost or unsure of our route...or to just have a chat with a friendly face that knows the area best.
After the second monster hill of the day, we had a nice drop into the town of Fossa where we planned to stay at the Fossa Carvan and Camping Park. After reviewing the price to camp+electricity+shower vs. getting a bed in the all inclusive hostile, we chose the hostile as the more bang for the buck method. Especially as we would be there for 3 days and spending little time in the room except to sleep.
Derry, the very friendly and helpful host, showed us the room and settled us in. We than had a conversation with a Irishman, Marty, who frequently visited the area in order to assist a cycling group in transporting all their bikes from Dublin. He gave us recommendations for the next few days as well as a suggestion for a pub to eat at. This pub/restaurant, the Golden Nugget, became our go to place for meals and to just relax after long day of riding (lending us some good tales later to come).
With full bellies on good, cost effective food, we decided to save Killarney for the next morning, instead going back to the room to catch up on sleep.