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Imagine my delight.. by maclimber   (Show all posts)
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kernowclimber
2011-03-04 10:49:27
The Annalong Track: A ReBUFTal of works?
I have been watching the exchange over path maintenance in the Mournes between Bleck Cra and Maclimber with interest. I’m surprised that others haven’t gotten involved in this delightful bun-fight as it must surely elicit strong sentiments among our membership? I have some reservations about intervention on our hills; the guidelines of the British Upland Footpath Trust (BUFT) related to Upland Path Erosion are therefore of interest:

Repairs are necessary to prevent or ameliorate visual intrusion and environmental damage.
Works should be of a high standard of design and implementation using indigenous materials, sympathetic in colour and texture to the immediate surrounding area.
Techniques used should protect existing vegetation and, normally, only locally occurring plant species should be used in restoration.
The more remote the path, the more stringently the criteria for path repairs should be applied.
Repaired paths should be suitable to the route’s use and constructed on a scale appropriate for the intended use as a footpath, bridleway or byway.
Before any repair is agreed the question should be asked, “is there a better solution?”
The use of waymarks, cairns or other intrusive features, other than those traditionally established on summits and path junctions, will be discouraged.
A sustained commitment of resources to path management will be sought, so that small-scale continuous maintenance can replace infrequent, major repairs as the normal method of path management.

At a 2005 conference this body stated their objective of broadening their activities to include Ireland. Et Voila! The immediate assumption is that walkers' trails are intrusive: they ‘scar’ the landscape, damage the environment. Yet to suggest that our hills are wild and unspoilt is a lame argument. They have had discernable trails since antiquity, are often intensively farmed and it is argued that sheep do more damage than walkers, making myriad paths in all directions. Their excrement damages the soil and their presence stifles biodiversity. But hill-walkers are told to ‘leave no trace!’ Most of us accept the presence of livestock; man has been farming our hills for eons. And we have been walking them just as long.

It is obvious that many ‘engineered’ paths in the UK are not working judging by the new trails creeping up alongside them. The stepped route up Scafell Pike in the Lake District is one such path, lethal when wet. The stones are slippery and angled downwards. You leave it at every given opportunity. Whilst I appreciate the argument that more people are taking to our hills and the paths are seeing more traffic, any intervention has to be ‘of an appropriate scale’. Cra posits that the question of ‘a better solution’ for the Annalong track was not thoroughly discussed. Is this so? The work does seem to be rather drastic.


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Summit Comment
Ballyguile Hill: Viewed from the south. Hope you like masts.
simon3 10 hours ago.
Ballyguile Hill can also be seen well from the south. Here's a view taken from near Brides Hill (a coastal hill near Wicklow Head)

  
Track
Exploration of Wicklow Head from the north.
simon3 11 hours ago.
As you will immediately see from the track this was an exploration of what is possible. This should be a lot easier s... walk, Len: 6.6km, Climb: 126m, Area: Brides Hill, Wicklow Coastal Hill (Irelan

  
Summit Comment
The Eagles Rock: A short but sweet scramble
IainT a day ago.
One of the few Irish summits that needs the use of hands by the easiest route. Those happy with exposure can get a good airy scramble (grade 2, pushing 3 maybe), by slanting left up an obvious ram...

Summit Comment
Slieve Foye: Irish Gabbro!
IainT a day ago.
Gabbro is one of the roughest and most frictiony rocks around and is superb for scrambling on, as all visitors to the Skye Cuiilin across the water know. I never realised until yesterday that Slie...

  
Summit Comment
Clermont Carn: Easy but a great view.
IainT a day ago.
If you drive up the road this has to be a contender for the easiest summit in Ireland, but it's well worth doing for the superb view. Wicklow to Donegal, with the Meath lowlands spread out like a ...

  
Track
Pic du Canigou
David-Guenot a day ago.
Ascending Catalogna's sacred mountain from the hamlet of Los Masos de Vallmanya, on well-marked trails, with two breaks walk, Len: 24.8km, Climb: 1853m, Area: France, Occitanie ()

Forum: General
Windphone project destroyed
wicklore 2 days ago.
The Wind Phone art project in the Dublin Mountains has been destroyed http://jrnl.ie/3547797 . It appears to be a strong statement by those against the idea

  
Summit Comment
Seanadh Bhéara: Access
sandman 2 days ago.
To answer the query raised by TommyV for at the time to facilitate parking on a narrow road and not wishing to park on the N59 i parked beside the farm yard with a view to access the hill via the ...

  
Track
Ramble on Ireland's Eye
wicklore 2 days ago.
A short walk on Ireland's Eye in September 2015. Original plan to visit earlier in the summer was thwarted by a huge f... walk, Len: 2.6km, Climb: 80m, Area: Ireland's Eye, Dublin Islands (Ireland) I

Summit Comment
Ireland's Eye: Screams were heard, getting fainter and fainter…
wicklore 3 days ago.
Ireland's Eye is situated about 1.5kms north of Howth Harbour. In Celtic times it was called Eria’s Island and then Erin’s Island. The Norse called it Erin’s Ey and this became Ireland’s Eye. (Ey ...

  
Track
Pic de Cagire Loop
David-Guenot 3 days ago.
A great loop walk in one of my favourite areas in the Pyrenees, which should have hardly taken more than 4h30 hadn't I m walk, Len: 11.8km, Climb: 892m, Area: France, Occitanie ()

  
Summit Summary
Carhoo Hill: Dingle Eask Tower
Collaborative entry Last edit by: aidand 3 days ago.
This is a modest climb, but with wonderful views. Take the road out of Dingle towards Ventry. After about a mile turn left at a sign marked 'Hanlon's handbags'. There is a parking area with a hut ...


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