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kernowclimber
2011-06-08 18:31:18
"Maamturk Mountains" from kernowclimber Expand pics
Maamturk Mountains (Expand pics)
Crossing Connemara’s Maamturks: Part One
Connemara, Wilde’s place of ‘savage beauty’ where the constantly changing light subtly alters the tone and mood of the landscape. Here, formidable quartzite mountains lift their lofty heads heavenward, myriad lakes trace intricate lacy patterns across the blanket bog, and narrow lochs, crevices of the sea, give way to the endless Atlantic beyond. Fishing villages with quaint quays, now tourist traps, and golden sandy beaches fringed with brown seaweed, lie along a convoluted coast where seagulls whirl on the wind. Connemara is a place of memory too. The ghostly imprint of lazy beds, dry stone walls and solitary derelict cottages, the fractured spines of their chimney places where peat fires once banished the cruel cold, are poignant reminders of those who vanished in an Gorta Mór.

The warm, sweet smell of freshly cut peat pervaded the summer air as we drove towards Leenane. Conical turf ricks lined up like weather beaten soldiers, were serenaded by the incessant melody of skylarks. A stiff breeze agitated the surface of Lough Inagh creating waves that deposited a thin line of foam on the shoreline; sun kissed ragged heads of yellow flag irises nearby nodded joyously. A swathe of sea mist that had blown in from Killary Harbour lay trapped below Mweelrea, hugging its slopes like a silk skirt, the Bald King’s head rising defiantly to greet a powder blue sky.

We passed the Maamturks, giant beehive shaped heaps of quartzite, the range we were going to traverse, their steep slopes appearing almost insurmountable. Doubts began to crowd my mind like dark shadows as the taxi from Leenane that dropped us near Maam Cross sped away. Was I equal to the task of completing this punishing traverse? The lonely call of a cuckoo out on the heath served only to heighten my unease as we set off carrying 10 kilo packs to trek 25 km of the most challenging terrain in Ireland.

The steep pull up Corcogemore was compensated by views of a shimmering world of deep blue lakes set amid the bog, and Joyce’s Country away to the east, wave upon wave of purple-green mountains, their tops blushing apricot in the ebbing sun. Broken, rocky ground led to a ridge which descended towards Cruiscìn, a mere appendage of Mullach Glas, surmounted in minutes. Atop Mullach Glas the views toward the ragged Atlantic coastline were sublime. Through bleary eyes stinging with unshed tears, rising above the cloud on the distant horizon I spied land floating mysteriously between sea and sky like Tír na nÓg: the Brandon Range in Dingle.

Dropping SW into a col we headed for Binn Mhór, the highest top, passing lakes teeming with tadpoles. At Binn Ramhar, we located a large cairn illuminated by a blazing sunset that marks the start of the treacherous steep descent to Maumeen Lake. Celtic crosses silhouetted against the darkening sky guided us up to the small chapel above the lake, a perfect place to fire up our stove, replenish water supplies and bivy overnight.
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Track
Keeper Hill from Silvermines (Knockanroe Carpark)
caseyc481 11 hours ago.
Wanted to climb Keeper Hill from the Silvermines side. Parked at Knockanroe carpark, walking downhill on fire road unt... walk, Len: 14.9km, Climb: 763m, Area: Keeper Hill, Shannon (Ireland) Keeper H

  
Track
Keeper Hill from Silvermines (Knockanroe Carpark)
caseyc481 a day ago.
Wanted to climb Keeper Hill from the Silvermines side. Parked at Knockanroe carpark, walking downhill on fire road unt... walk, Len: 7.5km, Climb: 233m, Area: Keeper Hill, Shannon (Ireland) Keeper Hi

  
Forum: General
MountainViews Gathering 2017
simon3 a day ago.
The event on Feb 17, 2017 had Peter Walker as MC with two main speakers.Gareth McCormack spoke about the vision and technicalities of modern landscape photography.Paul Clements discussed the Wild ...

Forum: General
Tick/Lyme Disease Awareness
Geo 2 days ago.
Don't be a tick - Check out this article and be mindful of yourselves out there http://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/health-family/lyme-disease-a-tiny-tick-can-pack-a-huge-punch-1.2964241I hav...

  
Summit Comment
Meenavally: A pleasant walk to theTower
BigFly 2 days ago.
Lovely pleasant walk

  
Summit Comment
Two Rock Mountain: Red Grouse near the summit.
BarnaneGoat a week ago.
I climbed here a few days ago from the east along the Dublin Mountains Way. The summit was shrouded in mist and we went astray at one point. I later discovered this was the result of a way marker ...

Summit Comment
Sgurr a'Choire Riabhaich: If Allt a' Choire Charnaig in spate there's a small
melohara 2 weeks ago.
If the Allt a' Choire Charnaig is in spate there is a small footbridge, wires and planks, a little upstream

  
Summit Comment
Sgurr Thuilm: If Allt a' Choire Charnaig in spate there's a small footbridge u
melohara 2 weeks ago.
If the Allt a' Choire Charnaig is in spate there is a small footbridge, wires and planks, a little upstream

  
Track
Ballysitteragh Stroll
Bunsen7 2 days ago.
A short stroll from the Conor Pass carpark. My plans for greater things fell victim to the inclement weather.Simply st... walk, Len: 7.0km, Climb: 340m, Area: An Bhinn Dubh, Brandon Group (Ireland) A

Summit Comment
Sgurr nan Coireachan: If Allt a' Choire Charnaig in spate there's a small foot
melohara 2 weeks ago.
If the Allt a' Choire Charnaig is in spate there is a small footbridge, wires and planks, a little upstream

  
Summit Comment
The Big Gun: A Big View
mcrtchly 2 weeks ago.
A view of the Big Gun, Cnoc na Péiste and the southern ridge of the Reeks taken after a light fall of snow in late January 2017

  
Summit Comment
Tievebaun: Crash of 42-31420 in 1943
dp_burke 2 weeks ago.
Just a quick link to the story of 42-31420's crash on Tievebaun as I found it.http://www.ww2irishaviation.com/42-31420.htmIf you do go up top the small bit of wreckage that is left, please don't r...


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