20 members on 15 bikes turned out for today's end-of-season Leinster ride out and lunch. After meeting for breakfast at Mother Hubbard's in Moyvalley, the group set off on a scenic run through counties Kildare, Westmeath and Meath stopping en route at the beautiful and ancient monastic settlement, Fore Abbey. From there, the ride out went through Crookedwood and Multyfarnham on the way to Feerick's Hotel in Rathowen, where it finished up with a delicious carvery lunch.
From Discover Ireland
In a tranquil, green valley in the village of Fore, about a 30-minute drive from Mullingar in County Westmeath, visitors can view the site where St. Fechin founded a Christian monastery in the 7th Century. It is believed that, before his death, 300 monks lived in the community. Later, the monastery was set on fire 12 times.
Among the remains, visitors can see St. Fechin’s church, built about 900 AD. They will also find one of the 18 Fore crosses, which are spread out over 10 kilometres on roadways and in fields.
The Abbey is noted for what local populations call its "seven wonders". These are:
The monastery in the bog
The mill without a race (St. Fechin reportedly induced water to flow from the ground and operate a mill that had no visible water supply - in reality water from Lough Lene flows through the ground)
The water that flows uphill (St. Fechin reportedly used his staff to make the water flow uphill)
The tree that won’t burn (Pilgrims place coins in it giving it the name "the copper tree")
The water that won’t boil
The anchorite in a cell
The lintel-stone raised by St. Fechin’s prayers
An educational day out for all! :)
Thanks to Denis and Bernie Brunt for leading today's ride out!