1997 Treewalk Photogallery Page 1

A view from the road between Sneem and Kenmare, part of the scenic coastal route known as the "Ring of Kerry".

The weather in February '97 was appalling down in Co. Kerry. Here we see the typically icy roads, with Ireland's highest mountain range, MacGillicuddy's Reeks, in the background.

Saul (U.K.), John (Eire), and Matthew (U.K.) in the Radio Kerry studios in Tralee. We were given a half-hour slot, with interview and freeform music. This was punctuated by adverts for McDonalds, and a "free petrol" giveaway!

The alliterative configuration of Maurice the mule with Mick, and Marein (Shetland pony and veteran of the '96 walk).

Anne from Connemara, and Isun scratching his head on Zymbii's cart.

A hazy image of one of the faery mountains rising above the Burren in Co. Clare. The Burren is an otherworldly geological anomaly (the only other place of this kind being found somewhere in the former Yugoslavia), with an incredibly powerful and eerie ambience. Some of us were forced to spend a day there when Maurice refused to be caught, preferring the company of a pair of beautiful semi-wild horses in the adjoining field. We were under the impression that this mountain was the celebrated Mulag More, but were later told otherwise.

The Treewalk made a spontaneous appearance in the Athenry (Co. Galway) St. Patrick's Day parade. The parade was actually held the day before St. Patrick's, as the day itself was dominated by the All-Ireland hurling championships, in which St. Mary's Athenry were playing, and almost the entire town made the pilgrimage to Croke Park in Dublin. The walkers presented an ash tree to the town to commemorate the event (Athenry won, as it happened), the hurling stick being made traditionally of ash. The incredibly fast-moving sport has its roots in Irish mythology and is sometimes referred to as the "clash of the ash".

Mick, in bardic mode, and his beloved home, the "Cartae Mundae" (a hybrid cart/shelter) which was built in Sneem before the walk, and pulled by Maurice.

Matthew (England), Gareth (Scotland), and John (Eire) at our camp in Athenry, the garden of a friendly old local woman.

Andy (Isle of Man), playing his djembe for a group of mentally handicapped children at a school in Longford. Longford was our most northerly point, and was also the scene of our (brief) appearance on RTE TV's "Nationwide".

Janie (sporting her famous potato-sack sunhat) and Mick (a.k.a. Percy a.k.a "El Chapatista") keeping up with an unusually speedy Maurice somewhere in Co. Laois. April was unreasonably hot, some days being too hot to travel

Isun grazing in the grounds of the daffodil-studded vicarage in Abbeyleix, Co. Laois, where the walkers spent three unforgettable days. These included a visit to the "Sense Garden" (a beautiful project involving the mentally handicapped), both village schools (Catholic and Protestant), and a spontaneous latenight concert in the chipshop.