Sunday, October 09, 2016

Doughmore Beach

Doughmore Beach (also Doonbeg Beach) is a long sandy barrier beach with a cobble berm and a large dune field. Apparently, it is one of western Clare's better known surfing spots.


A recurring theme of some of these Irish posts is that not only are golf courses often built among the dunes, but the term "links" is actually an Irish word that derives from this geographic association.

Doonbeg is a great example, with a major golf course landscaped into the dunes, sometimes pretty close to the beach. Unfortunately beaches move around, more readily than greens and fairways, so when a big storm a couple of years ago took some chunks out of the frontal dune, the owners thought that dumping large rock along two miles of beach would be cheaper and easier than modifying their golf course.

Until a few years ago, this was the Doonbeg Golf Club and The Lodge at Doonbeg, but it's been recently acquired by a large American real estate developer, who's updated the place and given it a name that more closely reflects the personality of the owner than its original history and geography.

Interestingly, the new owner believes quite strongly that building walls can solve complex problems. In this case, the new owner also began building the wall without seeking permission from the local authorities. Which ruffled some feathers and shut down the project, at least for the time being.

There are no shortage of articles about the recent history at Doonbeg, but this one in the European edition of Politico (July 2016) starts with a really nice picture of the beach!

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