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gerrym: Track 2107 in area near Slieve Bearnagh North Tor, Mourne Mountains (Ireland)
Trassey Track to the Tors of Bernagh
Length: 10.7km, Creator time taken: 5h59m, Ascent: 672m, Descent: 658m
Places:Start at J31108 31392, Slieve Bearnagh North Tor, Slieve Bearnagh, end at Start Logged as completed by 1
It is in words below and in video here
Starting point was the carpark at Trassey, which on a Monday was completely deserted, unlike the busy weekends when parking can be at a premium. Indeed i did not come across another soul during my 6 hours out on the hills.
A stone stile starts the journey along the Trassey Track, passing through woodland before dropping down and getting the first views of the Mournes in the distance - today rising to a covering of snow and mist. A turnstile is passed and signs warn of the need to respect those who use the land, minding dogs and litter.
The track is easy walking and stone walls hem in for a time before opening out with height. The track has suffered significant erosion due to heavy rainfalls over the past months and in places 3 foot deep gullies carve out half of the track. The Trassey River is followed for a time and provides great immediate company as well as the tops that now start to close in as go further up the valley.
A track off to the right heads for the high col at over 500m between Bernagh and Meelmore - the way back! Head straight ahead for the magnificent wall of earth and boulders that brings the Hare's Gap and the Mourne Wall at nearly 450m. A strong breeze was blowing today and it was not bringing any warmth with it so the lee of the Mourne Wall was a welcome spot to stop for lunch.
A gate provided access to the kingdom within the fabled Mourne Wall and a right turn brought steep steps that quickly lifted me high above Hare's Gap. The Wall is followed all the way to the summit and is an excellent navigational aid. Patches of frozen snow soon made an appearance alongside the snowtrap of the Wall and previous days rain had turned to solid ice as cooler weather had appeared across the hills. This made for some tricky walking and the saving graze was fresh snowfall higher up which gave a more stable footing.
Tantalizing views of other snow covered tops came and went with the mist but the focus was firmly on Slieve Bernagh North Tor ahead. The black rock giants stood out starkly against the invading white army as snow showers blew in and lying snow danced crazily. It was absolutely stunning to be up here all on my own to appreciate what a spectacular place this is.
A further short rise brought the true summit area, the top itself - another brooding piece of rock - was not on the menu today. The North Tor had disappeared into the mist and the wind was raising its game so with no hanging about the steep descent towards Slieve Meelmore beckoned. This is steep enough in good conditions but was fun and games with the icy conditions. Again following the Mourne Wall. Clearing cloud gave gobsmacking views down below and to surrounding tops.
A stile is crossed at the col and a good track descends back down to the Trassey River, passing old quarry works that coveted the famous Mourne granite. Passed a number of waterfalls and was continually looking back up to the higher ground all around as the snow had now been left far behind.
A great walk on tracks to high mountain with steep ascent and desent that was good in bad weather today and has been great in good weather - if that makes sense!
Uploaded on: Tue, 5 Mar 2013 (19:20:05) Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/track/2107/ To download GPS tracks you must be enrolled and logged in. See "Login or enrol", top right - quick and easy.
Note: ALL information such as Ascent, Length and Creator time taken etc should be regarded as approximate. The creator's comments are opinions and may not be accurate or still correct.
Your time to complete will depend on your speed plus break time and your mode of transport. For walkers: Naismith's rule, a rough and often inaccurate estimate, suggests a time of 3h 16m + time stopped for breaks
Note: It is up to you to ensure that your route is appropriate for you and your party to follow bearing in mind all factors such as safety, weather conditions, experience and access permission.