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simon3
2012-04-23 17:15:50
The best rated 100.
ww and p walker -
The scores are not arrived by anyone pulling strings on the website. It is simple arithmetic. People are asked how do they rate different summits under 7 categories. They rate them. The website adds them up and presents the result back.

Lugnaquillia doesn't do well with a score of 73%, based on the opinion of the 120 people who choose to put in a rating.
It indeed has some things going for it such as height and a certain amount of challenge, however it is normally littered, hardly wilderness being beside a firing range and with little sense of isolation because of the numbers visiting it, has significant walker damage and people didn't rate its aesthetic highly. I am surprised that the 120 voted it to have such a good view because its flatness means that you can only see the tops of the nearer summits to it - try taking an interesting photo from the top on any day of average visibility.

Slieve Carr that I was on last weekend has a score of 91because it really is a challenge to get to, it has a superb view over the Achill/ Corraun areas and others and numerous nearer lakes and wild plains, it has a sense of wilderness since it is far from roads and built up areas, it has almost no visible signs of having been visited since its megalithic tomb was built, has quartzite flanks that look well in the distance and particularly from the south and east and has access from all sides unlike Lug. 9 people rated Slieve Carr giving it a score similar to many of the North Mayos.

Currently there are over 7000 ratings spread over the 1057 summits we list. The best scores tend to be in Connemara, the South West or Donegal. (
see http://mountainviews.ie/statistics/?au_sort=avgscore )
with the poll toppers being the Mweelrea group, the Ben Gorms, the Maamturks.
The least scoring are scattered smaller ranges like the Arignas or Boggeraghs. Dublin/ Wicklow as a whole comes well down the list at 43 out of the 60 areas we currently list. Of the Mournes only 2 get into the 100 best rated.

Of course if you don't value the seven criteria in the way MountainViews does, it is entirely possible that you may arrive at a different set of conclusions. If, say, you think that the quality of a mountain is indicated by the number of people visiting it then yes indeed you would arrive at a different list headed by Croagh Patrick, Carrauntoohil, Lugnaquillia, Djouce and Slieve Donard.

As far as I am concerned the MV ratings only confirm what guidebook writers have said for years. For example Claude Wall (Mountaineering in Ireland 1939) said "the finest climbing is the South and West, but the eastern and north-eastern hill systems have the advantage of proximity to the large centres of population." Adrian Hendroff's more recent book devotes the bulk of its attention to the West, North-West and South-West with just 13 pages for Wicklow out of 228.

Personally I enjoy walking in Wicklow which I probably have done and continue to do 20 times a year. But I have no illusions about where the quality hills and mountains of Ireland are.
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