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Cairngaver 217m,
2933, 4km
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Belfast Hills Area
Maximum height for area: 478 metres,   Summits in area: 10,   Maximum prominence for area: 380 metres, OSI/LPS Maps: 15, 20, 21 For all tops   Highest summit: Divis, 478m
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Cairngaver Hill Carn Geamhair A name in Irish
(prob. Ir. Carn Geamhair [PDT], 'cairn of the corn-grass') Antrim County, in Binnion List, Sandstone Bedrock

Height: 217m OS 1:50k Mapsheet: 15 Grid Reference: J45433 76564 This summit has been logged as climbed by 35 members. Recently by: Ulsterpooka, PPruz, jimmyread, DrMonkfish, IndyMan, Garmin, Miranda, chalky, PPruzina, Wilderness, Aidy, mark-rdc, paddyhillsbagger, neelix_tdog, Peter Walker
I have climbed this summit: NO (You need to be a logged-in member to change this.)

Longitude: -5.749519, Latitude: 54.616317 , Easting: 345433, Northing: 376564 Prominence: 192m,   Isolation: 4.6km,   Has trig pillar
ITM: 745350 876558,   GPS IDs, 6 char: Crngvr, 10 char: Cairngaver
Bedrock type: Sandstone, (Gala Group)

Cairngaver is the highest point in the Craigantlet Hills between Belfast and Bangor. The name refers to a cairn on the summit, which must once have been of considerable size. However, it appears to have been robbed out, leaving only a high ring-shaped bank. The summit is shaded by a grove, open enough to permit good views of the Ards and Strangford Lough, in which Scrabo Tower features prominently. The anglicised form Cairngaver suggests that the second element is geamhar, 'corn in the blade', 'corn-grass' (Dinneen). This is more probable than *Carn Gabhar, which one would expect to yield anglicised forms like *Cairngore in Ulster or *Carngower elsewhere.   Cairngaver is the 1356th highest summit in Ireland.

Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/1029/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Cairngaver in area Belfast Hills, Ireland
Picture: Looking south across rolling countryside
Potentially Shocking Summit
Short Summary created by wicklore,  5 Jul 2010
The summit area consists of a trig pillar on top of an old, dismantled overgrown cairn. While the immediate high point is a pleasant grassy area with trees, there are masts and buildings at the summit also. Start at either J44858 75950 A or J464 778 B. Watch out for electric fencing and a dangerous quarry near the summit. By stepping away from the summit there are great views of Strangford Lough, Belfast Lough, the Scrabo Tower and the distant Mourne Mountains across verdant and rolling countryside. Ask for permission at the first farmhose reached on either route as it is unclear whether these routes are public access or not. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/1029/comment/5788/
MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Cairngaver in area Belfast Hills, Ireland
Picture: looking over Strangford Lough
Cairn Wood to summit
by gerrym  21 Mar 2011
Ample car parking at entrance to Cairn Wood (448775 C) high in the Craiganlet Hills, an oasis above the sprawl of Belfast and its outliers.

The wood has a permanent orienteering course and waymarked trails (a notice is pretty tough on those mountainbikers and their homemade trails though!). Following the blue trail loops off left through fir and then the beautifully individual beech trees before rejoining the main uphill track. The wood is pretty open and offers the opportunity to go exploring at will.

The blue trail then loops off right - at its crest the comms masts were just visible straight ahead, drop slightly and leave the track for a single trail heading for the masts. Cross a fence by a post with a loop of barbed wire which gives easy access to a farm track which goes right to the summit, in an easy 25 minutes. The trig pillar sits on the remains of an old cairn surrounded by three rather more modern communications masts.

The views, even on this cloudy day, were great. S & W holds attention over the entirety of Strangford Lough and to the high Mournes touched by even darker clouds and showers. Belfast Lough and across the Irish Sea to Scotland comes a close second and some dandering brings further views over the Belfast Hills. I enjoyed lunch with my back to a beech tree and the views to the Mournes.

Followed the single track back to rejoin the loop which rejoined the main track which was straight downhill to the carpark. Saw a couple of large white birdboxes on the way and apparently red squirrels live here! Pretty quiet in the forest and at the summit only had the company of an engineer sitting in his van for lunch. Enjoyable hour and then headed downhill to Holywood to walk the North Down Coastal Path to Bangor. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/1029/comment/6282/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Cairngaver in area Belfast Hills, Ireland
Picture: Strangford Lough and Scrabo Tower seen from Cairngaver
pdtempan on Cairngaver, 2009
by pdtempan  5 May 2009
What an expedition for such a small hill! Our original plan for the day's outing was to take the bikes on the train from Belfast to Newry and cycle out to the foot of Slieve Gullion. Thwarted in the 1st mile before even reaching Belfast Central, by broken glass and a back-wheel puncture to Denise's bike which needed more tools than we were carrying, we returned home to repair the puncture and rethink plans. Reasoning that a shorter trip was the order of the day, we abandoned rail travel and decided to cycle out to Cairngaver, our nearest local peak. We had walked a couple of times in Carn Wood, but had never gone to the summit, which lies just outside the forestry. Its inclusion in the new MV list was all the incentive we needed! After a detour into Stormont for a spot of tourism, we began the steep climb that marks the beginning of the Craigantlet Hills, and it was here that disaster struck for a second time, as I picked up a puncture from a hawthorn twig left after hedge cutting. We had used our last patch to repair Denise's puncture, and, being Sunday, there was no cycle shop open to buy fresh supplies. If we wanted to achieve any summit in the day, there was nothing for it, but to lock the bikes to a farm fence and continue on foot. Fortunately, 1km further on, we came to a garage, where, by a great stroke of luck, we were able to buy a puncture repair kit. We decided, perhaps unwisely, to continue by foot. After a 3-4km trudge along the busy road, we were relieved to turn into Carn Wood for some peace, quiet and woodland scenery. The magnificent beech trees in this wood make it very attractive. A trail marked with a horseshoe to indicate a bridleway hugs the SW edge of the forestry. This is an interesting alternative to starting at the main car-park about 1km further E. There are several path junctions, but if you keep near to the edge of the wood, you will not go wrong. Don't be tempted to wander outside the wood as you will immediately come to a major quarry with dangerous cliffs. Briefly there is a rather ugly patch where grey dust from the quarry has clogged all the tree-foliage and ferns, but this is soon left behind. As you approach the summit, the wood tapers to a point. There is no stile, but we found a place where the fenced was clearly meant to be opened and re-fastened with a loop of barbed wire. From here it is just 200m to the summit itself along a clear track. This appears to be on private ground, outside the Forestry Commission's land, so bear this in mind if you meet anybody. However, we had no problems. The views from the summit were excellent, including the Ards, Strangford Lough and Scrabo Tower. We returned by the same path through the woods, and repeated our trek along the busy road. The puncture was repaired in just under half an hour (mercifully, as we were getting very cold) and all that remained was to coast downhill to get back home. All this for a 217m peak! How not to do Cairngaver... Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/1029/comment/3708/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Cairngaver in area Belfast Hills, Ireland
Picture: Scrabo Tower and Strangord Lough from just beyond the summit.
A Million Miles From The City
by Aidy  4 Dec 2013
Parked in the car park at Cairn Forest (448775 - Point C) and went through the forest, initially following the track, and moving uphill. Once I started to glimpse the South East edge of the forest, I left the track and cut through the trees until I could see the tree ringed summit and masts. The summit is farily easy to reach if you keep going in a roughly South East direction. The walk through the forest was enjoyable in itself, especially when it changed from evergreens to oak, beech, birch and other hardwoods. There were also plenty of weird and wonderful fungi to look at this time of year. The summit and trig pillar are set in an attractive strand of trees, separated from the forest by a field. It is worth wandering past the summit for a few metres, particularly to the South East for great views of Scrabo Tower and Strangford Lough. Even allowing for locating the summit through the trees, a very quick walk and hard to believe you're so close to the city.. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/1029/comment/15275/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Cairngaver in area Belfast Hills, Ireland
Picture: Pretty summit scene amongst masts and buildings
A gentle hill
by wicklore  5 Jul 2010
Another approach to Cairngaver is to start at a farm road to the south at J44858 75950. This leads past some houses and leads to the summit area in about 1km. It is possible to park along the track at the first house with permission. As you follow the tarred road you will come to a bend and an obvious stone track branching off uphill through the fields. Electric fences each side of the track clearly separate the track from the fields. Shortly afterwards you reach a point where a single strand of electric fence crosses the track blocking the way. There is a plastic handle on the left hand side designed to make it easy to unhook the fence safely for passing through. A few minutes more brings the summit area. The summit is anomalous. The trig pillar sits atop the remains of a cairn covered in long waving grass. Some deciduous trees and hedging surround the grassy area and cairn. The long waving grass completes the scene of rural peace. The summit trig pillar area is reached by passing through a farm gate, but outside of the immediate summit area the wider summit has a few masts and service buildings. There is extensive electric fencing along the track and surrounding fields, while the nearby quarry adds to the busy industrial/commercial feeling to the wider hill. But if you can just sit at the summit and take in the immediate sylvan surrounding, as well as the more distant excellent views you will be well rewarded. I was lucky to have a warm breeze keep me company as I imagine this hill would be quite cold on a typical Irish day. People using this route should ask for permission or just ‘check in’ with the first farm house on the track out of courtesy, especially if leaving a car there. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/1029/comment/5922/
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three5four0 on Cairngaver, 2008
by three5four0  6 Oct 2008
Cairngaver by Train & The Ulster Way

A suitable hill for foul weather?, well given last Saturdays weather the appeal of the higher hills was diminished some what. So, after a short train journey form Belfast to Helen's Bay station, you can pick up the Ulster Way, which runs under the station, by going through the station subway and emerging out into the woods and onto the path. Follow this south on the old Clandeboye Avenue track, crossing the A2, with extreme care!, and picking up the Ulster Way again on the far side (this is not clear till you cross the A2, the entrance is just to the left of the gate & house). Keep following the Ulster Way, which takes a right turn off the Clandeboye Avenue Track, and brings you onto the B170 beside an old school house (cottage). Cross the B170 & follow the Ulster Way to just before it takes a left turn (464778), on your right will be a small path, marked with mountain bike tracks, which leads up onto a minor road. follow this south for around 700 metres to 464769 D. There are 3 tracks here which all converge at a farm (see below), this cement track goes all the way to the summit cairn and Telecommunications mast, which the track serves. The summit cairn looks to have been dug out and there is also a trig point, the views must be quite good, when it is clear that is! Return is by the way of ascent, though you could follow the Ulster Way through the Clandeboye estate to Helen's Tower and onto Newtownards for the bus back to Belfast. Once back at Helen's Bay, as it should still be early in the day, you can follow the North Down Coastal Path to Holywood, which makes a fine 16-17 mile day. Of course, the fact that the Dirty Duck pub and restaurant is near the Holywood train station, serving as it does 3-4 different cask conditioned ales and fine food, should speed you along the last section of the Coast Path and provides a fitting end to the day.

Note:- The access track to the summit of Cairngaver runs past a farm and through its yard (though it is on far right of the yard), i had no trouble walking through here and on my way down there was people working in one of the sheds, with one giving me a wave. I think the track has probable being surfaced for servicing the mast, so there shouldn't be a problem. For those who might prefer a different approach, there is a forest - Carn Wood - with a parking area on the B170, where tracks are shown on the map going towards the summit, or even the lane marked on the west side of the hill, which is shown going all the way to the summit. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/1029/comment/3359/
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British summit data courtesy:
Database of British & Irish Hills
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