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I don't smoke. I n.. by CaptainVertigo   (Show all posts)
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kernowclimber
2011-06-08 18:32:46
"Exhaustion creeping in!" from kernowclimber Expand pics
Exhaustion creeping in! (Expand pics)
Crossing Connemara’s Maamturks: Part Two
We slept fitfully due to the wind that gusted through the col that night. A watery sunrise and grey, chilly morning greeted us; Binn Ramhar’s top was wreathed in mist. We began the long haul up Binn Chaonaigh opposite. Close to the summit the cloud descended and an eerie silence enveloped us. With quartzite rock underfoot and the mist above, everything acquired a strange white luminescence. We plodded on along the gravely ridge leading to Binn idir an dá Log taking in Binn idir an dá Log SE Top en route.

The tricky descent to Lough Mhám Ochóige was an enjoyable challenge involving some mild scrambling. What a delight to see this indigo lake nestling it its corrie appear through the mist. And the immense serpentine coils of the Failmore River, sweeping verdant expanse of Gleann Fhada and the far section of the Maamturk Range beyond. Away to the left were Loughs Inagh and Lehanagh and the mighty Twelve Pins. Ahead, the brooding hulk of Knocknahillion lay in wait. We had completed half the traverse.

A steep pull brought us to the summit and this was followed by some pleasant airy walking across the quartzite ridge towards Letterbreckaun, taking in Cnoc na hUilleann North Top. Looking back at the magnificent landscape we had just crossed was humbling: deep corries gouged out of the face of white giants by glaciers that sliced through solid rock to create the deep valleys below. But the intense concentration required to negotiate the rocky terrain coupled with the exertion of carrying a heavy pack began to take its toll. We paused for something to eat and to treat more drinking water at Loughaunnagrevagh before summiting Letterbreckaun.

Fine scenery continued to ravish the eye: Loughs Kylemore and Fee and Killary Harbour, thin ribbons of indigo set in a sea of verdure hemmed in by mountains. But my heart sank when I saw the distance we still had to cover. The ridge of the NE Maamturks looked like a green tidal wave, threatening, insurmountable and in between, yet more ascent and descent, including the daunting prospect of the Col of Despondency.

How aptly named it is! With leaden legs I hauled myself ever upwards, digging deep into a reservoir of untapped resolve. The ridge was conquered, but ahead lay a gruelling descent over boggy ground to the Western Way and Leenane. The setting sun caught Mweelrea alight, the reddening skies as menacing as my mood. I cried with the fatigue and the pain and the sheer preposterousness of walking 25 km with over 2,500m of ascent carrying a 10 kilo pack.

As my aching feet hit the Western Way I wept with relief, to have completed the traverse; we were both down safely. I swore I’d never do it again. Ever. But never is a long time and half an hour later, sitting in a pub in Leenane nursing a creamy Guinness, smug with the afterglow of success, I’d already begun to forget the mental anguish and physical pain that had stalked me like the Grim Reaper in those mountains.
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RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 19 Next page >>
Summit Summary
Currywongaun: Rough and Rocky
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 14 hours ago.
Park off road in a small lay-by at L72134 59157 and ascend the spur in a roughly Easterly direction to the summit. Usually climbed en-route to its larger neighbor Doughraugh.

  
Summit Summary
Doughruagh South Top: Twin of Doughruagh main top
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 14 hours ago.
Located behind Kylemore Abbey, it has been reported that access from the grounds is no longer allowed. It is possible to park in a small lay-by at L77637 58711 and walk approx 30m along the road t...

  
Summit Summary
Doughruagh: Rocky summit with access issues from Kylemore Abbey
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 14 hours ago.
Located behind Kylemore Abbey, it has been reported that access from the grounds is no longer allowed. It is possible to park in a small lay-by at L77637 58711 and walk approx 30m along the road t...

Track
Forbidden Keadeen
CaptainVertigo 2 days ago.
Please DO NOT attempt to gain access to Keadeen from the road by following my route. The owner, who is a very decent ... walk, Len: 7.2km, Climb: 487m, Area: Keadeen Mountain, Dublin/Wicklow (Ireland

  
Summit Summary
Raghtin More: The smallest Inishowen Arderin
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 a day ago.
The easiest approach is to park at Urrismenagh viewpoint carpark C317 443 and follow the track to its highest point. From here you can avoid Crockmain and carry on towards Raghtin More to the Nort...

  
Summit Summary
Crockmain: An uninspiring summit with great views
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 a day ago.
The easiest approach is to park at Urrismenagh viewpoint carpark C317 443 and follow the track to its highest point before heading north over heather to the summit. Alternatively from Mamore Gap c...

Track
Meentog South East Top
Onzy 2 days ago.
Route to Meentog SET from west. Parking is in a farmyard (with permission) and a helpful track leads up to around 540m walk, Len: 4.1km, Climb: 336m, Area: Glenbeigh Horseshoe (Ireland)

  
Summit Summary
Knocknanacree: Views to Slieve Mish and the Dingle Peninsula
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 a day ago.
Summit can be approached from the West by parking near Minard Castle V556 992 and following a rough track uphill past a quarry and onto the summit ridge.A shorter steeper approach is possible from...

  
Summit Summary
Teeromoyle Mountain: A summit in the middle of a classic Horseshoe walk
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 a day ago.
This summit is usually accessed whilst walking the Glenbeigh Horseshoe. A shortened version taking in the 4 central 600m summits in the centre of the horseshoe Teeromoyle, Coomacarrea, Mullaghnara...

Forum: General
Irish Times - Post Mortem on Hillwalker
CaptainVertigo 4 days ago.
According to the Irish Times a postmortem examination is to be carried out on the remains of a man found during the search for a hillwalker in Connemara who went missing during a St Patrick’s day ...

  
Summit Comment
Bruse Hill: Bruse
Nekarsulm 2 days ago.
Track up from the quarry is overgrown. I partially walked up a small stream, as it at least cuts its way through the whins. Climbing straight upwards, you will see places where some earlier climbe...

  
Track
Doolieve
caiomhin 5 days ago.
walk, Len: 3.5km, Climb: 48m, Area: Doolieve, South Cork (Ireland) Doolieve


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 19 Next page >>