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Post details Post   (Expand pics)
kernowclimber
2011-07-25 20:26:51
"Loneliness is an island named Scariff" from kernowclimber Expand pics
Loneliness is an island named Scariff (Expand pics)
The Islands of Adventure
The islands off Kerry’s coast are bathed by the Gulf Stream with a climate that is fickle, often tempestuous, but utterly seductive. An extraordinary light plays on them; their forms change continuously in response to kaleidoscopic weather patterns. Some are easily accessible, others not so. Puffin and Scarriff islands, both uninhabited, are seldom visited. The first is an important nature reserve; access is restricted by BirdWatch Ireland. Scarriff, remoter still, is a world away. Here, feral goats roam the tangled vegetation and abandoned cottages stare forlornly across restless seas as the only reminders of past habitation.

On a calm murky day, a rib boat left Portmagee with 3 BirdWatch Ireland members and 7 intrepid MVers aiming to scale 2 offshore summits. The distinctive whaleback Puffin Island with its black, rugged cliffs soon loomed out of the mist, its cliff-face vantage points home to noisy colonies of Atlantic Puffin, Manx Shearwater, choughs and gulls; their raucous calls filled the air. The island looked impossible to land on, the sea sucking greedily at slimy rocks as the rib pulled into a rocky inlet. Care was needed to scramble ashore followed by a steep climb up a cliff gully. The vivid emerald ground of spongy moss and wiry grass is honeycombed with the burrows of rabbits, Puffins and Manx Shearwaters.

The summit was easily attained, offering fine views and a sense of glorious isolation. A silvery luminescence periodically bathed the mainland that shimmered in and out of the mist, revealing cliffs and zawns gouged out by the merciless Atlantic. The wind bore the rhythmic chugging of fishing boat engines. The lesser peak opposite rises dramatically from a deep narrow inlet that almost dissects the island, with sheer cliffs either side. Mesmerised, we watched the antics of hundreds of puffins just feet away, amused by their colourful beaks and comical expressions as they stared quizzically at us, unconcerned by our presence.

The rib thumped over the restless waves towards Scarriff, scattering seabirds that protested nosily. Eventually the island appeared, summit shrouded in mist. The rib slowed, the eerie shrieks and wails of seabirds rent the air as we glided beneath towering cliffs bathed by seas of petrol blue, spotting sea urchins, jellyfish and seals in the clear water. The unnerving solitude of cliffs and sea and the utter desolation of the place seemed carved into the old steps leading ashore.

The terrain was different here: knee deep grass, ferns, heather and furze. The nondescript summit, shrouded in mist, was attained after an easy 1.6 km climb. The forlorn shells of abandoned cottages down slope and the constant low moaning of the sea engendered a sense of sadness, leavened only by the soft purring of a male Storm Petrel discovered in a wall crevice. Our departure signalled this Atlantic outcast’s return to its eternal loneliness. This special day will be etched forever in my memory. Thank you, Wicklore.
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RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 19 Next page >>
Summit Summary
Doughruagh South Top: Twin of Doughruagh main top
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 2 days 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 2 days 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 3 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
Currywongaun: Rough and Rocky
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 2 days 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
Raghtin More: The smallest Inishowen Arderin
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 3 days 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 3 days 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...

Summit Summary
Knocknanacree: Views to Slieve Mish and the Dingle Peninsula
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 3 days 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...

  
Track
Meentog South East Top
Onzy 4 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
Teeromoyle Mountain: A summit in the middle of a classic Horseshoe walk
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 3 days 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...

Summit Comment
Bruse Hill: Bruse
Nekarsulm 4 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...

  
Summit Comment
Coppanagh: Wear Your Wellies
Pepe 5 days ago.
As of early 2017 the top section of forestry has been felled, making the trig easily visible once you're up. A word of caution: this felling has resulted in a treacherous summit surface; a gazilli...

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


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