Across the Isle of Man

I happen to be on the Isle of Man for a few days. This morning I hopped on a random bus, which brought me to Peel on the western side of the island. I spent an hour there and had an early lunch, and then took another bus north to Ramsay. I got off about halfway though, in Kirk Michael. And somehow I decided to walk along Baltic Road and across a hill from there. Halfway through it started to rain and the wind got stronger, and somehow I decided I’d walk all the way through to the other side of the island.

The path I had followed deteriorated to almost ;) Malagasy dimensions. It soon ended and my only choice was to cross private land to reach Druidale Road further down in the valley.

On Druidale Road I reached Druidale Farm, from where a footpath leads to the head of Sulby Reservoir. Here I joined Sulby Glen Road, which climbs along the hillside of Snaefell (621m), the highest mountain on the island. The weather got worse; rain, fog and a heavy-heavy head wind (I should have done this in the other direction) made the walk somewhat difficult. Visibility had decreased to less than 50m and sometimes I walked side-ways to evade the heaviest of gusts. With rain in my face and wind in my ears I didn’t hear my camera’s screams for help – it drowned unnoticed in my jacket’s pocket (water-proof apparently means: the water that’s inside won’t get out any more).

When darkness fell I reached Bungalow, a station on the Snaefell Mountain Railway at the junction of Sulby Glen and Mountain Road. The railway doesn’t run during the winter, so what could be more obvious than to use it’s tracks to reach Laxey, especially since there is no other direct road or path available?

The walk on the tracks was almost pleasant and about an hour later I emerged in Laxey on the eastern coast of the Isle of Man. Only when I sat down in the bus that brought me back to Douglas (the capital of the Isle of Man) I realized that my clothes were more or less completely soaked and I started to get cold. Nothing a hot shower and a warm dinner couldn’t fix, though.

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