The Ascent to Laxey on the Manx Electric Railway

The Victorian tram ricocheted side to side and up and down as we made the ascent. With wind at full gusto, the trip on the Manx Electric Railway from Douglas felt like the prequel to an old rollercoaster ride…

As we took in the amazing elevated views of the Isle of Man’s east coast during the half an hour journey, the relatively sunny day clouded over and the heavens opened with a vengeance just in time for our arrival at the tree-canopied station in Laxey.

Not being the best-prepared hikers, we were without waterproofs and therefore opted to dive into a quaint track-side cafe for a coffee.

As we were sitting there listening to the pattering of the rain on the windows, a bullish elderly woman in a head scarf swung through the door and began chatting away familiarly as she made her order, complaining about a man ‘always sitting on his bum’.

I barely managed to prevent myself from laughing-out-loud when I noticed the rain had ceased hammering on the tin roof and the sun was showing its face again.

So we began our mini adventure up into the hills towards the village of Agneash after first strolling past the world’s largest working waterwheel, the Laxey Wheel, spinning majestically.

The sun came and went in small cycles as we tread the bramble-lined tracks and crossed fields.

There were many pauses as I spotted numerous sea-view photo compositions and excitedly shuffled around in my bag for the camera.

Yellow flowers framed the forefront and shiny green fields rolled down towards the glistening blue sea, with white ripples, below candy-floss clouds.

Two playful hares could be seen chasing each other in a nearby field and gangs of horned sheep grazed contentedly in the shade, with the misty peak of Snaefell, the island’s highest summit, standing darkly in the distance

My peripheral vision constantly scanned for bulls as we pushed against head-on winds to cross a large open field.

Taking long, deep breaths my lungs felt revitalised and cleared of city smog.

The walk sloped down towards King Orry’s Grave – a monument believed to have been built more than 4000 years ago by farmers, as a memorial to their ancestors.

The island is steeped in the remnants of ancient, mysterious civilisations.

With our leg muscles pulling, and birds of many tunes squawking, we arrived back at the station to await the rickety ride back to Douglas.