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March 2023 Newsletter

Welcome to the third monthly Three Rock Books newsletter. Thanks for signing up. I hope these monthly emails will offer some interesting insights into my plans for Three Rock Books.


Work continues on the second edition of Cycling in Ireland, during the snowy spell two weeks ago I visited the Slieve Blooms on the Laois/Offaly border to check out the mountain bike trails. It was a beautiful crisp day and there was a nice sprinkling of snow on the higher ground. The morning was spend on the Laois side and then in the afternoon I crossed over to the Offaly side. By the end of the day my legs were spent, but it was great to get out on my mountain bike for the first time in too long. For what it’s worth I enjoyed the trails on the Laois side more, the area has a more remote feel and the trails flow better. That said, both are well worth a visit, you could make a great weekend of it, staying overnight in Kinnitty.

The high point of the blue/red trail on the Laois side

On the Laois side I tackled the black trail which is a significant step up from the blue and red trails, it drops very steeply with some tricky sections, two of which I walked down. To be honest, it was slightly beyond me and I’m much more comfortable on the easier flowy trails, I also find these ‘better value’ as they aren’t as steep and tend to run across the fall line rather than down it.

The Black Trail

The Island

The first island trip of the year went very well. En route from Dublin we swung into Western Herd brewery near Ennis to pick up some essential supplies. Tucked away down a maze of boreens and based on a farm, it was great to see their setup, we got to have a quick look around and a chat before leaving well stocked. The brewery is only 15km from the island and I love the idea of watching the sunset from the rocks beside the beach and enjoying a beer that was produced in the hills nearby.

Western Herd
The stove in-situ

The boat is rarely empty when we cross to the island, this time we had the wood-stove (all 70kg!) and 10 sections of corrugated metal for the roof. In the past we took over full-length (14 foot) sheets of corrugated, but this time we took 7 and 8 foot lengths. Much more manageable, they somewhat fit in the boat and are easier to store and handle.

It was lovely each evening to sit in front of the stove with a beer, enjoying the full of our labours – a warm stove and water-tight roof.

Exploring Ireland Reprint

I took delivery of three pallets of Exploring Ireland two weeks ago and the shelves in my garage went from pretty much empty to overflowing! I have limited storage here which is always a consideration when deciding how many books to print. Settling on the size of each print run is one of the two major strategic calls I have to make (the other is which books to work on), Obviously, a large volume reduces my unit cost, but there is the issue of storage and another factor is that if I want to update a book I have to wait until the current edition is sold out.

Thanks for Reading

If you have any thoughts, suggestions or feedback then don’t hesitate to get in touch, I would love to hear from you.


Three Rock Books