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Donegal NW Area   Derryveagh Mountains Subarea
Maximum height for area: 751 metres,   Summits in area: 71,   Maximum prominence for area: 688 metres, OSI/LPS Maps: 1, 10, 11, 12, 2, 6 For all tops   Highest summit: Errigal, 751m
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Muckish Mountain An Mhucais A name in Irish
(Ir. An Mhucais [DUPN], 'the pig back/ridge') Donegal County, in Arderin, Vandeleur-Lynam, Irish Highest Hundred Lists

Height: 667.1m OS 1:50k Mapsheet: 2 Grid Reference: C00448 28709 This summit has been logged as climbed by 289 members. Recently by: joekdp, Aidy, kenmoore, chalky, MrChew, doopa, DenisMc, sean-evelyn, tiki, vince_curran, Fergalh, Ulsterpooka, Rob_Lee, Benedicte, dregish
I have climbed this summit: YES (You need to be a logged-in member to change this.)

Longitude: -7.993765, Latitude: 55.105634 , Easting: 200448, Northing: 428709 Prominence: 667.08m,   Isolation: 3.2km,   Has trig pillar
ITM: 600397 928691,   GPS IDs, 6 char: Mcksh, 10 char: Muckish

So named from a fancied resemblance according to Joyce. The mountain does indeed have the shape of a pig's back, with a curve before a steep downward drop on the S side. A quarry on the N side of the mountain was used to extract high-grade quartz sand for optical glass.   Muckish is the third highest mountain in the Donegal NW area and the 160th highest in Ireland.

Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/163/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Muckish in area Donegal NW, Ireland
Picture: Muckish from the north
 
climbing the pig
Short Summary created by CaptainVertigo, jackill, scapania  20 Sep 2012
Muckish can be tackled by two main routes, by the Miner's track ( YouTube http://youtu.be/v51Wo2a8l0w ) or from Muckish Gap. For the Miner's track, turn left off the N56 about 2km north of Creeslough. Park about 8km along this little road, in a little grassy quarry on the left, just before the road loses its surface at about B998 293 A. Follow the track to its end and up the clear path into the corrie, up the precipitous backwall, taking care not to take any of the wrong paths (marked by low walls across them), until you reach the large flat area that has been quarried out of the mountain for its silica-rich rocks. After pausing to admire the various bits of rusting machinery, and ponder how they got them up there, head up the path to the left and onto the stony expanse of the summit, from where the summit trig and nearby cross are a short stroll.

To gain the summit plateau from the south, park by the grotto on Muckish Gap at B999 269 B and head north to the next bend, before heading off to the right across the bog, to climb up a well-worn path to a shoulder at just over 350m. From here, head steeply up to the left, with the gradient soon easing. Just before the plateau is gained, an eroded path heads right, just below the rim of the plateau, to come out on the plateau near a very large cairn. From here, the summit trig and cross are about a 500m walk northwest, not at all easy to find when the mist is down. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/163/comment/4923/
 
New Comment A novice's challenge!
by joekdp  7 Oct 2014
I took the miner's path, a bit daunting for a novice climber like myself, a real challenge but only took me 1hour to reach the top. Very satisfying climb, views were fantastic Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/163/comment/17712/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Muckish in area Donegal NW, Ireland
gerrym on Muckish, 2006
by gerrym  2 Jan 2006
Muckish is an incredibly distinct mountain and one I have longed to climb for a number of years - cue last Sunday and a 2 hour drive from Antrim. Access is via N56 from Letterkenny and a turn left after Creeslough onto a road which heads direct for the mountain. When taramc ends there is room for several cars to park at the side of the road. Continue along the now gravel track as winds uphill through turf cuttings and moorland in varying shades of brown. The impressive northern buttresses of Muckish loom overhead as the track peters out at the head of the old quarry workings, where concrete platforms and rusting plant are the less visible scars of the quarrying operation. Follow path across stream and uphill into the ampitheatre of crags and buttresses. There is a set of wooden steps which lead to more difficult walking as skirt and negoiate rockfaces (hands will be needed). Unfortunately we lost the track here and continued uphill by way of a narrow gulley which entailed scrambling up rocks passing wooden remains of quarrying operation, heading for the winches above. A word of caution - there is quite alot of loose rock and one of my companions had a lucky escape when a substancial rockface gave way in front of him. He was pulled to one side or he would have been bouncing down the gulley along with football sized rocks. When reach winches are at the quarry itself (see pic looking down). This is a marvel at this height, just below the summit, with an extensive level area which has been quarried backed by high walls. There is an excavator with rubber tyres and an old bogey among the traces of white sand that was so precious at the time. Return to and follow the path left as rises above the quarry onto the rocky summit plateau, passing small cairns on way to trig pillar at 666m on NE of mountain. There is a large tethered cross on a cairn further NE which was erected in 2000 according to the plaque. Great views N and E over headlands and beaches towards Inishowen. To the west the Sperrins can be seen clearly and as track south over summit plateau Dooish and Slieve Snaght are backed by the Bluestack Mountains. Head SW to reach massive burial cairn in centre of plateau and continue further for views of Aglas and Errigal. There are a number of small cairns here and a perfect igloo shaped stone shelter with doorway. Headed NW here to descend the western shoulder of the mountain. This is quite an easy descent over rocky ground which becomes more heather as descend. At foot of mountain track east to rejoin the gravel road which will return to the car - all the while being drawn to look up at the imposing rock faces. Took around 4 hours in all and was more of a challenge on way up than i would have thought. There were a few other people about at the bottom but no one else up top when we were there.Visited the excellent beach at Dunfanaghy which is nearby before returning home and Muckish is a true monster dominating the skyline from here. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/163/comment/1239/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Muckish in area Donegal NW, Ireland
Picture: Muckish with the cloud coming down
 
strabanejohn on Muckish, 2006
by strabanejohn  25 Jul 2006
5 of us did a great climb of Muckish on Saturday. Using OSI Map 2, we had a choice of doing the easier Muckish Gap (starting around 993272 C) or the more difficult Miners Path. We chose the latter. Going north through Creeslough, about a mile or so later take a left turn at approx 051329 D, signposted Derryhariff - there is a graveyard on the right . Follow this road straight on, past a quarry workings on the right, over a cattle grid and keep straight on - the road winds up the mountain, it is tarmac most of the way, the last 200m or so is a bit rough and you'll come to a dead end just below the old quarry workings - there is room here for four or five cars parked on the side.

As you face the mountain you'll see two large concrete slabs, one (on the left) with old machinery and the one on the right with nothing. On the one on the right someone has written in large red letters 'START' (now well worn) with an arrow pointing across the stream - this is the start! Along the way there are a number of these red arrows pointing the way.

The first section is a scramble up to the wooden steps just below the start of the rockface proper - then it's a zigzag up to the top - if you come across a small wall of rocks blocking the path, this means 'don't go this way, you must have missed the main path'.

The top is amazing - a large plateau with, as my sister commented, rocks which appear to have been rained down. Like the surface of the moon! Amazing views all round, in particular Errigal looks splendid.

There is a trig point, a huge cross made from girders (how did they get it up there?), a prehistoric burial cairn (again our forefathers must have struggled to carry bodies up there in bare feet!!), a small stone igloo and any number of cairns.

We saw heavy rainclouds coming in our direction, so decided to get off the top, thankful that we did as half Muckish was covered in cloud. You need to be very careful going down asit is a bit of a scramble. An excellent day out and highly recommended. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/163/comment/2442/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Muckish in area Donegal NW, Ireland
Picture: http://youtu.be/v51Wo2a8l0w
Stunning McVeigh Video
by CaptainVertigo  20 Sep 2012
I have not yet walked Muckish but am eagerly looking forward to it after watching Gerry McVeigh's new YouTube video showing an ascent by The Miners' Track (is that our own gerry m?) . The film has the benefit of exceptional light, and it shows off the stunning vistas to their best. I heartily recommend this 8 minute feast for anyone who has any notion of going up that way. Gerry McVeigh says in his written intro: "Walking on Muckish mountain in Donegal, Ireland. A walk in the beautiful Derryveagh Mountains of Donegal climbing up the Miners Track on the northern side of Muckish Mountain. A steep path through old mine working and quarries to reach the summit trig point at 666m. A broad summit gives views over coast, lough, hill and mountain - with a large summit cross, burial cairn and beehive shelter to stop the mind wandering too far afield. Donegal is a special part of Ireland for walking and with a blustery NW wind bringing through showers the only constant was the wind as light & shade, wet and dry, cool & not quite as cool came and went."
http://youtu.be/v51Wo2a8l0w
Another very interesting and attractive Muckish movie is Antuatha's: " Muckish Climb Donegal, The "Miner's Path" (Kodak playsport) " to be found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dI25cynp4zo&feature=channel&list=UL Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/163/comment/14819/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Muckish in area Donegal NW, Ireland
Picture: Looking west from Muckish summit plateau to Errigal and the three Aghla's
 
a true monster
by slemish  26 Sep 2010
Having holidayed in this part of Donegal for almost 30 years I had long wanted to climb Muckish but found it invariably covered in mist or low cloud. Today was one of the few rain-free days you get in Donegal so I decided to take the chance and finally bag this fantastic mountain while the going was good. As I approached the Muckish Gap from the south via the R251 I started to have second thoughts as it really did look enormously high - perhaps too much for a relatively inexperienced hillwalker like myself. Nevertheless I parked up beside the shrine at the Muckish Gap (993272) and proceeded up following paulocon's route. Getting up the grassy lower foothills was no problem though somewhat boggy. However once turning the corner onto the vast SE face of Muckish things started to become more difficult - a very long, very steep climb through deep heather. Each step upwards seemed to sap the energy from me. At about 500m I considered turning back as my legs felt like jelly but I pressed on after a short rest. I found it easier going over the rocky scree section near the top as at least it was something to dig into compared to the heather. Eventually I reached the summit plateau where my energy levels lifted to continue the climb to the trig pillar which stands at 666m. I had read about the lunar-like surface of Muckish may times but to actually get up there and see it for myself was fantastic. Unfortunately much of the path on top is starting to become very badly eroded. On a fabulous day like this views extended over much of Donegal - I could easily make out the four other hills I have climbed in this county. The view SW towards Errigal and the three Aghla's was something I will never forget. I returned to the car by way of ascent. Very tired but with an immense sense of satisfaction at finally conquering Muckish. Only my second summit over 2000ft and the most difficult one so far. Total trip up and down - a rather gruelling 2 hours. Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/summit/163/comment/6111/
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