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kernowclimber
2013-07-14 18:26:42
"Lough Belshade and cloud inversion from Ardnageer" from kernowclimber Expand pics
Lough Belshade and cloud inversion from Ardnageer (Expand pics)
A Bakerís Dozen in the Bluestack Mountains: 2
Thankful for the refreshing gift of a sound nightís sleep, I woke just after dawn to the smell of coffee. An ethereal mist had crept in from the sea swallowing views of Donegal Town, but the sky was clear, the sun already warm; it promised to be another scorcher. Breaking camp, we began the steep descent from Croaghbane involving mild scrambling over granite cliffs towards Ardnageer, a fin of rock reflected in a bog lough in the col below. Approaching the summit, we disturbed two grouse which took off protesting noisily. The summit gave views over Lough Belshade, indigo and mysterious in the morning light, while on the northern horizon the quartzite cone of Errigal rose majestically above the Derryveagh Mountains. We passed over Ardnageer SW Top close to a strange outcrop of gleaming quartz on its NW flank, behind which Lavagh More looked ominously high.

Before we scaled its heights, we had to surmount the highest point on the traverse: Croaghgorm. The route was incised with steep gullies of exposed granite with carpets of bog in their bottoms. In one, we found the wreckage of a RAF Sunderland DW110 which crashed in January 1944 claiming 7 lives. The highest point in the Bluestacks gained, we were over half way through the traverse. A gentler descent off Croaghgorm over heath and grass took us past Lough Cronagorma fringed with bog cotton nodding ragged white heads in the breeze and sporting a colony of stringy bogbean. Here I disturbed a fledgling meadow pipit which fluttered clumsily across the water and lay cowering amid a tangle of vegetation. I gently picked it up, a fragile little ball of warm fluff and feathers, its tiny heart pounding against the palm of my hand. Released from my grasp, it soon disappeared. Motionless, its plumage provided a perfect camouflage.

The pull up Lavagh More was punishing in the heat. Besides midges, we now had horseflies to contend with; I could feel their razor sharp mouth parts slicing into my skin. The summit gained, we had lunch before assailing Lavagh Beg, passing above several loughs in the boggy basin between Silver Hill and Binnasruell. The turbines of the wind farm near Carnaween still looked very far away. From Silver Hill to Cullaghacre, up to the foot of Carnaween, the route was mostly exposed peat hags and squelching bog. After halting at Mileyís Lough for a cuppa, we assailed the quartzite slopes of Carnaween, the final summit of our bakerís dozen. Following makeshift waymarks (Carnaween is climbed the 1st Sunday in June) we descended steadily over heath, heading for a picnic area at the end of an old boreen by an abandoned cottage where we were to be collected. We should have stuck to the waymarkers but took a short cut and unfortunately veered off into a stinking morass of boot sucking bog and waist high reeds. Thoughts of a cool beer, a hot shower and an escape from midge misery now crowded my mind. I was mightily relieved to see the taxi driver who welcomed us back to civilisation!
The heat from a gl.. by kernowclimber   (Show all posts)


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 19 Next page >>
Forum: General
Are there new cairns in Wicklow
wwwalker less than an hour ago.
Is it my imagination or are there some new cairns appearing in Wicklow recently. There are small ones at point 702 ( T043 980) marking the turn for the lugduff ridge and at T086 975) marking the d...

  
Summit Comment
Stoney Top: A haven of peace away from the multitudes!
Colin Murphy 2 hours ago.
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Summit Comment
Tonelagee NE Top: Barely recognisable as a separate top
Colin Murphy 2 hours ago.
This is a handy one to bag on the way to Tonelagee, but it is so nondescript that many a walker has by-passed it without realising it is a top in itself. The summit is a broad, grassy area with no...

Summit Comment
Tonelagee: The perfect beginner's mountain
Colin Murphy 2 hours ago.
Besides crossing Glenmacnass River at the start and end, (which has seen many an unfortunate walker ascend in soggy boots) Tonelagee is a pleasant and relatively easy climb from the carpark near t...

  
Summit Summary
Iorras Beag: Panoramic views of Connemara
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 5 hours ago.
A pleasant 2 hour walk from Roundstone village by taking a minor road to the west from the centre of the village. There is parking along this road at L71775 40102. Continue on ungraded road to a w...

  
Summit Summary
Cashel Hill: Connemara in the Sun
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50, Buny Clare 5 hours ago.
Climbed on Tuesday 07th June , 2 hrs 45min return. I went up the track from the road after the entrance to Cashel House Hotel and just before the church L80303 42385. Walked past the graveyard and...

Track
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Bunsen7 9 hours ago.
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Forum: General
Do your VITAL bit for hillwalking maps soon.
simon3 10 hours ago.
Ordnance Survey Ireland bring out a high proportion of the maps of interest to hillwalkers in Ireland. They are the only source of mapping for vast swathes of the island of Ireland. But since they...

  
Track
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Onzy a day ago.
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Track
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GSheehy 2 days ago.
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Summit Summary
Doughruagh: Rocky summit with access issues from Kylemore Abbey
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 4 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 South Top: Twin of Doughruagh main top
Collaborative entry Last edit by: liz50 4 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...


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