Park at the new car park [OS Sheet 83, A (V388 650)
] at the start of the new Bolus Loop route. The loop itself is worth doing and is what I had in mind until…well more on that later. Anyway, head south for about 1.5 km until you come to a Y junction…you'll have magical views of Puffin Island and the Skellig rocks as you amble along.
The signage for the loop is set up for an anti-clockwise direction so the arrows are pointing to the right at this junction. However, if you want to get up Bolus quickly, take the left road and follow its zig zags until you reach teh obvious saddle. Head left, following the fence and jumping it when it intersects with another one. From here it's a very short skip and a hop to the summit from where there are magnificent views looking east into Ballinaskelligs Bay and the islands off derrynane and west to the Skelligs and puffin islands.
If you're doing the loop retrace your steps to the col and cross a style to continue to the old barracks at the top of the next minor hill. There is also a WW2 lookout nearby - at the time this was manned around the clock by a party of 6 according to the local farmer I spent a few pleasant minutes with. His quip "If a farmer from Carlow or Kilkenny came down here, he'd starve" is one that I'll not forget in a hurry.
I had ascended in the late evening and was planning on sleeping in the shelter. As my stew was cooking on my stove, I figured I'd save time and set up my bed only to discover that I'd left my sleeping mat in the car! It was a breezy, cool evening and a sleeping bag on the concrete floor would not have been conducive to sleep (even if I had a bottle of whiskey with me) so, after eating, I headed despondently back to the car. It took less than an hour to get there but by then it was dark and, despite being back in the presence of my sleeping mat, I drove back home to Killarney instead. Tthe moment had passed!
For info on the loop walk see
http://www.discoverireland.ie/Activities-Adventure/bolus-head-looped-walk/88297 Linkback: mountainviews.ie/summit/782/comment/17967/