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Kernowclimber and .. by mcrtchly   (Show all posts)
Dublin Wicklow Mou.. by Dwmrt   (Show all posts)
My grown up childr.. by CaptainVertigo   (Show all posts)
kernowclimber
2010-11-29 17:08:39
Winter comes to the Granite Kingdom
The Mourne Mountains, gripped by the first iron fist of winter, lay partially concealed beneath yellow-grey cloud rumbling atop their crests, russet skirts dusted with ice and snow. With a bitterly cold wind at our backs we began the walk up the Glen River track. Verglas-covered rocks lightly peppered with snow covered the crazy paving that passes for a pathway, making walking conditions difficult. Higher up this gave way to thick grey ice that oozed down over the pathway’s steps dripping icicles like melted wax. Stopping to don our crampons, a large group of youths wielding walking poles appeared, inching their way slowly downwards determination etched onto wan faces bearing smiles bordering on grimaces. ‘Der wearing spiky tings’ gasped one in amazement as we exchanged greetings and left them slipping and sliding open mouthed behind us.

The mountains of this granite kingdom never fail to amaze and astound, their rugged beauty matched by the ever-changing weather of the four seasons that plays about their summits. Like an addict, one is compelled to return again and again to indulge in their majesty and to savour their mystery. Yesterday was one such day. I watched, mesmerised, as frigid Slieve Bearnagh, its spiky tors silhouetted against an apricot sky, was slowly engulfed by cloud boiling up in the valley below partially obscuring the watery sun now hanging like a paper lantern in the darkening sky. Bright pools of light flooding the surface of the Irish Sea gradually vanished from sight as snow began to fall heavily.

Struggling against a vicious east wind we made our way up to the tower on Commedagh, seemingly etched in monochrome, a welcome sanctuary from the elements. We fired up our stove inside for a hot drink watching the maelstrom unfolding outside. With the mercury plummeting and a wind chill making it feel about -10, we reached the cairn on Commedagh in near white out conditions then began our descent through ankle deep snow to Slieve Corragh. Through the spindrift and snowflakes whirling dervish-like I thought I spied a person; then more loomed into view. The granite pillars below Commedagh appeared like giant totem poles carved by the hand of time into fantastical shapes – stone sentinels guarding the castle of a Mountain King. Clambering over the ice encrusted Mourne Wall we reached the summit of Corragh then returned to the Castles, passing a group of walkers taking shelter close to the stile.

The path down to Newcastle was now covered with the diamond dazzling treachery of fresh snow on ice. As we descended below the cloud it stopped snowing, unveiling the iced tree tops of Donard Wood and the white crescent of Newcastle Bay abutting a moody grey-green sea. Entering the mysterious darkening Donard Wood snow began to fall softly, the twinkling lights of Newcastle revealed periodically between the tangled boughs of trees serving to entice us safely downwards.
Totally agree with.. by maclimber   (Show all posts)
Just to follow on .. by mcrtchly   (Show all posts)
Just a short note .. by Dessie1   (Show all posts)
Prepare for a W.. by simon3   (Show all posts)
To be fair to exxo.. by maclimber   (Show all posts)
Ah yes, the Bards,.. by Conor74   (Show all posts)


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 17 Next page >>
Summit Comment
Inishmeane: The concrete road thru the village
magicstep an hour ago.
Part of the village, about 10 houses in total.

  
Summit Comment
Inishmeane: Not much to do, a tranquil place.
magicstep an hour ago.
Visited in 2014. There's a sandy beach and a solid pier with slipway and a picnic table facing the mainland. The road from the pier all the way thru the village is a robust concrete one, but it's ...

  
Summit Comment
Inishsirrer: Deserted village
magicstep 3 hours ago.
Mainland on the horizon (left and right)

Summit Comment
Inishsirrer: The only building that is not a ruin.
magicstep 3 hours ago.
Surprisingly Donegal islands have a very good mobile internet reception, sometimes better than in an office in Dublin.

  
Summit Comment
Inishsirrer: Part of a road from the past
magicstep 3 hours ago.
There's a salty tidal lake on the island.

  
Summit Comment
Inishsirrer: Uninhabited except a few sheep.
magicstep 20 hours ago.
I did kayak to the island in 2014. There is a slipway facing the mainland. Lot's of ruined houses. Walking is decent as the island is flat but in places ground is uneven and overgrown, there are o...

Summit Comment
Knockroe: OMG - I forget to check the MV page!
Pepe a day ago.
Decided to make a day out of a Dublin-Waterford drive, despite low-hanging cloud. Knockroe wore a misty white cap as I glanced up from the Sculloge Gap carpark. Planning my attack (so I thought), ...

  
User profile
ewen
ewen a day ago.
Now living furth of Scotland and getting to know the Irish hills. If you come across a Scottish hill Walker with dodgy knees and walking sedately, stop and say hello.

  
Summit Summary
Bleantasour Mountain: A boggy but short ascent route
Collaborative entry Last edit by: simon3 2 days ago.
Go to the forest entrance at S22452 09704. there is room here for a few cars.Walk down the forest track, crossing a ford and follow the track until you can see open ground.Walk south along the edg...

Track
A handy way up two western Monavulaghs.
simon3 2 days ago.
Easy access to the ridge.Improved RouteUsing the hard won experience of others and new forest roads we found a relati... walk, Len: 6.5km, Climb: 263m, Area: Bleantasour Mountain, Comeragh Mountains

  
Summit Summary
Milk Hill: Carry on bagging
Collaborative entry Last edit by: simon3 2 days ago.
Go to the forest entrance at S22452 09704. there is room here for a few cars.Walk down the forest track, crossing a ford and follow the track until you can see open ground.Walk uphill to the summi...

  
Summit Comment
Seefin: Fine day spoilt by Scramblers
ewen 3 days ago.
Started at the Coillte gate at 068145 where there is parking for 2 cars. I then followed the forest road around until the first turn off to the left. This takes you along to the fire break/path at...


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 17 Next page >>