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gernee
2016-11-28 16:56:18
Slieve Binnian - more track work ?
Revisited Slieve Binnian for the first time in years on Friday - frost underfoot, blue skies and rolling mist contributed to a great walk, despite disappointment at seeing some of the track work up close for the first time. We noticed a digger, a container and some people at work down near Binnian Lough - although we could not see any evidence of another track being laid. Anyone any idea what is being done here?
CaptainVertigo
2016-11-26 21:11:54
Wall v NPWS Day 3
Pat Mellon, rural recreation officer with Wicklow Partnership, told the High Court on Friday that the 130km Wicklow Way could “disintegrate” if a Circuit Court ruling that the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) is liable to pay damages to a hillwalker who fell on a wooden boardwalk that forms part of the trail is upheld
Mr Mellon said other landowners whose property the Wicklow Way goes through were concerned about the implications of last April’s decision. Some had informed him they were considering withdrawing permission allowing hillwalkers on their lands if the ruling stands. He said and others could follow resulting in the closure of the Wicklow Way.
Mr Mellon told the High Court that a scheme is in place where a small payment is made to any landowner who allows hillwalkers on their lands that form part of a trail.
Once a trail gets approval from the national accrediting body, the National Trails Organisation, insurance on the private landowner’s property is covered by Irish Public Bodies.
Mr Mellon said getting landowners to give hillwalkers permission to go on to their property had previously been “a tough sell”, but after the Circuit Court decision it had become an “impossible sell”. Some of the Wicklow Way goes through lands owned by the NPWS and Coillte, plus 38 private landowners. Since the Circuit Court’s ruling, three private landowners had informed him they would withdraw their permission for walkers to go on their land.
The case will continue in December when the Court is expected to hear evidence from other experts.
CaptainVertigo
2016-11-26 20:53:13
"Appeal Commences before Mr. Justice White" from CaptainVertigo Expand pics
Appeal Commences before Mr. Justice White (Expand pics)
The Appeal Begins
The National Parks and Wildlife Service appeal to the High Court against the Circuit Court award of €40,000 to hillwalker Teresa Wall began in The Four Courts this week before Mr. Justice Michael White, as reported in The Irish Times.
Judge Jacqueline Linanne last April found the NPWS negligent in that reasonable care had not been taken to maintain the boardwalk, on which Ms. Wall fell, in a safe condition, and that this failure was responsible for Ms Wall’s injuries.
The NPWS had denied negligence or breach of a duty of care towards her, and , in addition, had pleaded that Ms Wall had contributed to her injuries by not looking where she was going and she was participating in an activity known to have risks, and that it (NPWS) was not responsible for anything that may have happened to her.
There was a preliminary application by the NPWS’s for permission to call new evidence during the appeal. It was argued that the case was very important for the NPWS especially in the context of what duty of care occupiers of land owed to hillwalkers.
Mr. Murray SC (for the NPWS) said the service wanted to call evidence from Helen Lawless of the Mountaineering Council of Ireland; Pat Stokes, a health and safety official with the UK’s Royal Society for the Protection of Birds; and Pat Mellon of the Wicklow Partnership.
Louis McEntaggart SC, for Ms Wall, objected to those witnesses saying that their evidence concerned policy relating to hillwalking and the court must “not lose sight” of the fact that the appeal concerned a specific incident where his client tripped on the boardwalk and sustained injuries.
Mr Justice White said the appeal was being treated as a fresh hearing of the case, that the three could give evidence, but Ms Wall’s counsel could raise specific objections if the evidence was not relevant to the issues in the case.
According to the Irish Independent, Ms Wall (60), told the judge she was “black and blue on her right side” and in significant pain after gashing her knee on a nail after she fell on the boardwalk on August 6th, 2013 at about 4pm. After lying on the ground at the scene of her fall for about half an hour, her husband Damien had to “piggyback” her down the mountain because he was unable to get a mobile phone signal to call for assistance. Ms Wall’s foot had snagged in a hole in one of the old railway sleepers that made up a boardwalk just below the JB Malone memorial on the Sally Gap-to-Djouce trail near Roundwood, she said. The wound required seven stitches. The accident occurred as Ms Wall and her husband were coming down the mountain after a long walk, she said. They had been active hillwalkers here and abroad but, because of the injuries to her knee, she was now only able to walk on flat terrain. She had also enjoyed running and had trained to do the Dublin City Marathon in October 2013, but was unable to run any more.
The cross examination of Ms. Wall by Brian Murray SC for the NPWScontinued oin the second day of the hearing. Ms Wall accepted having phone conversations with employees of the NPWS on August 14. While some of the details were correct some were inaccurate Ms Wall denied telling NWPS District Conservation Officer Enda Mullen in a phone conversation that the accident happened after she tripped on chicken wire that had been on the sleepers. She also denied telling Ms Mullen she was unable, due to her injuries, to go on a holiday that day to Slovakia or that she asked the NWPS about compensation.
Ms Wall did accept that on the same date she phoned the State Claims Agency.
She told counsel she did that because she "wanted to know where she stood." At time of the phone calls she said she was on pain killers anti-biotics and valium."
An experienced hill walker of many years Mrs Wall described the boardwalk as being "very dangerous" and that she had contacted the NPWS over her concern of a risk to other walkers .
In her evidence, Ms Mullen said she spoke by telephone to Ms Wall on August 14 who she described as being "upset." Ms Mullen said she wrote down details given to her by Ms Wall
CaptainVertigo
2016-11-26 20:18:55
Wall v National Parks and Wildlife Service
What’s it all about?
Back in April, Teresa Wall, an experienced and accomplished hillwalker, was awarded €40,000 by the Dublin Circuit Court for personal injuries she suffered when she fell on a boardwalk on the Wicklow Way. The award was made against the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) who had constructed the boardwalk. NPWS duly appealed the decision to the High Court. The appeal, which involves a complete rehearing of the case, has commenced before Mr. Justice Michael White in the High Court, and is ongoing.
Why the fuss?
For many years, a key issue for hillwalkers has been the question of free access to the mountains. Landowners (strictly speaking “occupiers”), usually farmers, are generally tolerant of hillwalkers but express concern that they may be sued if a hillwalker is injured while on their land. Hillwalkers generally hold themselves bound by the principle that they take on all risks associated with their endeavours and if they get injured they will suffer the loss. Suing, hillwalkers say, would be futile and they point to the powerful protections afforded to land occupiers by Occupiers' Liability Act, 1995 which greatly curtails opportunities for successful litigation by “recreational users”. When the Circuit Court made its award to Ms. Wall, the farming community seized on the decision as proof of its worst fears: here was a hillwalker who not only sued, but won her case!
Did the Circuit Court decison “open the floodgates”? No
The legal duty of occupiers of land to “recreational users” is set out in Section 4 of the Occupiers' Liability Act of 1995. It is the same low duty that is owed to trespassers: (a) not to injure the person intentionally, and (b) not to act with reckless disregard towards that person. The Supreme Court interpreted this legislation in the case of Geraldine Weir-Rodgers v SF Trust Ltd in 2005. A young lady fell off a cliff in Donegal. She was a recreational walker. She lost her case because the landowner had not injured her intentionally and had not been guilty of reckless disregard for her. The Supreme Court effectively decided that the young lady went walking by a cliff and fell off because she went too close to the edge, and that was nobody’s fault but her own. The lady’s lawyers argued that there should have been signs erected to warn her of the danger that she might fall over the edge but the Supreme Court said that the lawmakers could never have intended to litter the countryside with warning signs. Such signs would be legally required (in open countryside) only in the most exceptional circumstances. The lower courts must follow the Supreme Court. In my respectful opinion, the Circuit Court judgment in favour of Teresa Wall was not an attempt to overturn these well-established legal principles. In fact the award was based on a very narrow ground, having nothing to do with the open mountain and everything to do with the creation by the NPWS of a “structure” on the mountain which it failed to maintain.
The Problem was the Boardwalk- not the Mountain
Teresa Wall never claimed that there was a problem with the mountain. Her claim was that there was a problem with the boardwalk, a structure that was put there primarily for the use of recreational users (hillwalkers). The 1995 Act specifically says that if you put a structure in place primarily for recreational users then you must maintain it. The Circuit Court judge decided on the evidence that the boardwalk had been put there for recreational users and had not been maintained, and Ms. Wall was hurt as a result, and that’s why she won. The case most certainly did NOT decide that anyone getting injured on a mountain must be compensated by the occupier. But needless to say that perception has gone abroad.
mcrtchly
2016-11-21 05:31:47
Wicklow Deer fence
Just wondering if anyone on MV knows anything about proposed trial of a deer fence in Wicklow and how this might affect walkers? It was reported in the Irish Independent http://www.independent.ie/business/farming/forestry-enviro/macra-backs-deer-fence-plan-to-curb-tb-35195387.html
simon3
2016-11-12 09:59:49
Book reviewer wanted: Mountains of Ireland
Collins Press, Cork, have just published The Mountains of Ireland, a "landmark portrait of the Irish mountains, nearly two decades in the making by prestigious photographer Gareth McCormack, who has been published in National Geographic and Time."

Anyone interested in reviewing this, please contact admin@mountainviews.ie
GSheehy
2016-11-03 09:45:36
"Brocken Spectre" from GSheehy Expand pics
Brocken Spectre (Expand pics)
Father/Daughter Brocken Spectre
My daughters first visit to Galtymore on Monday last and she gets to see one of these. I keep saying, that if you do enough walking there's no limit to what you'll see (or find), but she must have the luck of the Gods on her side.i
simon3
2016-10-26 11:22:49
Mountaineering Ireland consults on mountains
Mountaineering Ireland (MI) is attempting to build a consensus on what hillwalkers value in the Irish mountains. It is a very logical step prior to advocating on behalf of hillwalkers to first determine what they value. MI mainly draws hillwalking membership from clubs. MountainViews (MV) in contrast has many people interested who are not members of clubs (though many who are). MI have said they are interested in the opinions of people from the MV community.

And we recommend that people do take an interest in what MI are doing in the area of conservation and forward planning for upland areas.

Take a look at this thoroughly realistic portrayal of the situation as written up here:
http://www.mountaineering.ie/aboutus/news/2016/?id=51

Get involved in their meetings or otherwise.
cave-dweller
2016-10-19 12:59:14
Cable Car to the Hellfire Club - 20/10
Hello,

There is a meeting being held in the Yellow House Pub in Rathfarnham in Dublin 14 tomorrow night at 8 pm about some proposed "redevelopments" in and around the Hellfire Club/Montpelier Hill in the Dublin Mountains. Apparently, South Dublin County Council and Coillta are proposing to build a Cable-Car from Tallaght to the Hellfire Club. Sadly, I'm not joking. There's also some plan about a "treetop walkway" from the Hellfire to Massey's Wood.

Its billed as an "information evening" and is being held by Fine Gael TD Colm Brophy. I'm no fan of his or his party but there is scant information available about this and best not shoot the messenger etc.

I'm sure its no more than a PR exercise to get his mush on posters and to gauge the reaction of people to the ideas and then decide whether he's for it or agin' it.

I've included a link to an article The Echo did on it and to Mr Brophy's facebook page about it.

https://www.facebook.com/ColmBrophyFineGael/photos/pb.375204525946954.-2207520000.1476735991./895697420564326/?type=3&theater

http://www.echo.ie/news/article/cable-car-from-hellfire-club-to-the-centre-of-tallaght-planned

I've nothing against yodeling or goat-herders, but cable cars from Tallaght to the Hellfire Club which you can walk at an easy pace in no time at all? I thought we were supposed to be all about slimming down as a Nation and encouraging people to exercise and be more healthy? Not lurryin' lads up the gentle hills of South Dublin in cable cars so they can hurl cans out the windows and skull as many motorists, sheep and deer as possible on the way up the Tallaght Alps!

Leave it in the flaming hands of the Devil-worshipers and not the Swiss-impersonating gentry.
mcrtchly
2016-10-04 10:55:21
"" from mcrtchly Expand pics
(Expand pics)
Quad bikers in the Mournes
Whilst out in the Mournes on Sunday 2nd Oct, at about 8.30am we were shocked to see a group of half a dozen quad bikers powering up the track from the Banns Road towards Lough Shannagh (below Doan and Carn), shattering the peace and beauty of a gorgeous autumn morning with their noise and fumes. They proceeded along the edge of the lake and disappeared heading east below Doan and towards the Silent Valley (which now became the Noisy Valley). They returned about 2 hours later, this time driving through the water at the edge of Lough Shannagh before doing wheelies in the sand on the beach and stopping for drinks (some of them discarding empty coke bottles nearby). One of them even drove up and down through the lake several times right in front of where we were camped on the beach.

We encountered the bikers again on our walk back towards the Banns Road and I stopped to talk with the first driver (presumably the leader). I asked him if quad bikes were allowed in the Mournes and he replied yes. He also said that he owned a small bit of land in Mournes, implying that this gave him right of access. He went on to say that they had driven as far as the Blue Lough in the Annalong Valley. This would require a steep decent to the Silent Valley and back up the other side. We noticed that the track from the Banns Road to Lough Shannagh is already scarred with tyre tracks and loose stones dislodged by vehicle traffic, and was considerably worse after they had passed over it. No doubt significant damage would have been done to the bog by driving across to the Annalong Valley and may even have affected paths repaired by the Mournes Heritage Trust.

We have never before seen any quad bikers in the Mournes and I did ask one local resident about the legality of this activity; she told me that it was not allowed. Do any MV members know if this is the case? If so, then I will notify Mountaineering Ireland and the MHT about the incident. I attach one photo of a quad biker (and have others which clearly show the faces of the bikers).


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 15 Next page >>
Summit Comment
Knockowen: October 2016
davsheen 3 days ago.
View of the impressive Glanrastel valley from the side of Knockowen

  
Summit Comment
Cupidstown Hill: Enhance this with a visit to Oughterard
Bunsen7 3 days ago.
Yes, perhaps this is not a very noteworthy hill. Cupidstown and Saggart Hill represent largely forest topped outliers of the Dublin/Wicklow range split from higher summits to the East by the N81. ...

  
Summit Comment
Cloghernagh: Picture
davsheen 3 days ago.
Cloghernagh Walk Nov 2016

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Near South Cork (Ireland)
sean_debarra 4 days ago.
walk, Len: 0.8km, Climb: 15m, Area: South Cork (Ireland)

  
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Route to Claggan NE Top
Onzy 5 days ago.
walk, Len: 8.0km, Climb: 2m, Area: Claggan Mountain NE Top, North Mayo (Ireland...

  
Summit Summary
Robber's Pass Hill: Minor heathery lump. Overcivilised and underwhelming.
Collaborative entry Last edit by: simon3 a week ago.
This oddly named hill is more a very minor heathery bump incorporated into the system of tracks laid out by the Wicklow Mountains National Park. It can be reached from any of the western car-parks...

Summit Comment
Farbreague: from Arderin
ewen a week ago.
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Slievemore Circuit
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Summit Comment
Tonelagee: Fore!!!
ewen a week ago.
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Summit Comment
Brandon Hill: Grand on Brandon!
MountainBoy a week ago.
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Knockchree
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Summit Comment
Croaghmoyle: Easy walk up to great views
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