The way to Malin Head
Around 1000km one way
From my house in London to Malin Head, the northern most part of the Republic of Ireland it’s about 1000km, and it was done in about 2 days.
The first part of the journey is to leave England, which was done in 2 stops + 1 ferry.
I’ve gone all the way from London to Coventry for a quick lunch stop, and then headed to Chester to refuel and another coffee stop. The last bit in England I had to go through Wales, which has impressive views, especially closer to the ferry and the Snowdonia Park.
Then it was just a matter of waiting for the ferry in Holyhead that’d take me to Dublin in around 3 hours.
Giant's Causeway & Dark Hedges
Not too lucky on this bit. The Dark hedges was fine, and hopefully some drone footage can still be used, but Giant’s Causeway was already too dark to get a decent picture as I didn’t bring any tripod. It was a beautiful view as usual, but not too pleasant to walk back in pitch dark while worried that I was already late for the Airbnb check-in.
The Airbnb Cabin was a delightful little shed on the backyard of a property, not too far from the Malin Head point itself, and although I barely spent the night (and all I wanted was to sleep), it was a fun experience. It’s a shame that there were news that the Aurora would be visible if there were no clouds, but well, a downpour was coming, so I couldn’t see anything, but looking at the positive side, that helped me sleep and wake up early to head to Malin head. Again, very lovely countryside roads, empty, full of curves and beautiful views, a rider’s paradise.
At the very top of one of those curves I met a guy that spent the night during the storm on a camper van, another one of the nice conversations as he also had a Triumph in the past and stopped riding due to a motorcycle accident that hurt his back. He and his dog spent the night at the van and he mentioned that the wind was so strong that for a few moments he thought on leaving with fear of it tripping to the side.
The way back
There we go again!
After the visits to Malin Head it was time to head to Dunluce castle (which was closed of course), but that didn’t stop me to ride around the amazing curvy roads near it, and also to find a the Magheracross viewpoint with breathtaking views from the rocks and the sea. And from there, all the way to Belfast for dinner and Dublin to rest for the next part of the trip back to England.
2 days later, there I go to Dublin port and instead of repeating the same cities, I chose to go through Chirk, one of the cutest little villages I’ve visited and then to a small farm shop in Rugby to buy some stuff for dinner. From there, all the way back to London.
Gopro and Drone Footage
The mode of transport
As seen on some of the pictures (maybe too few pictures?), I rode a Triumph Street Scrambler during the whole trip, and it was surprisingly more comfortable than I expected for such a trip, as it’s not a cruiser by any means.
I made some adjustments to improve the comfort and both were worth it:
- Grip Puppy: they’re not more than just some foam bits over the handlebar. This helps reduce vibration and definitely made my hands less tired.
- Seat cover: Triumph’s seat is comfortable, but adding this extra padding to the seat was a nice addition, as it helps with breathing, also reduces vibration, making it a bit less unpleasant. It will never reduce the back and butt pain completely, but helped a lot.
- Tec Touring Luggage Rack: Instead of carrying everything on my back, I installed this rack from Tec. It’s a bit big, so visually not that pleasant, but for the purpose, it was the best thing I could’ve bought. It held the bag without any issues, allowing me to ride free.
The extra Gear:
Below is a simple list of the items I took on this trip, mostly focused on the photography part of it, of course:
- Peak Design 40l backpack: amazing backpack, fits everything, incredibly sturdy, and it is almost like it was meant for motorcycle riders, as you can fold the back straps and it becomes a roll bag, plus you can also use their own straps to help fixing it to your rack. It’s said to be waterproof, but as I didn’t want to risk losing my camera, lens and drone I added an extra cover on top.
- Dji Mavic Mini 2: very portable drone (please get the Fly More combo, as the extra batteries are going to be needed. Main reason to choose the Mini 2 instead of the Air or Pro is its size and weight. As it weighs only 249, it’s just below the limit that is required to have a license to fly.
- Sony A7III: Loook at reviews anywhere and you’ll know how good this camera is. I won’t waste your time here.
- Lenses: Tanrom 28-75 2.8 and Tanrom 70-300