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David-Guenot: Track 3238 in area near Binn Mhór siar barr, Maamturks (Ireland)
Eastern Maumturks route from the N.
Length: 17.5km, Creator time taken: 7h34m, Ascent: 1009m, Descent: 1010m
Places:Start at L92428 52137, end at Start Logged as completed by 1
This was the first of four walks in four days in the Maumturks, completed on a glorious day, with the best weather one could dream of. Starting NE of Mam Ean, plenty of room for parking, some 300m before the minor road veers left, I followed the Western Way up to the col and headed straight up the W slopes of Binn Mhor. This is a steep ascent but never really exposed, and the dry conditions definitely made the going easier. As you gain height, the views get more and more extensive, with the steep slopes of Binn Chaonaigh to the NNW, the Twelve Bens to the W and the flat bogland and the Atlantic to the S.
Once on the high ground, I made a short diversion to a minor top to the N of the ridge to enjoy the views NE, before heading to Binn Mhor W Top, where I took a break to enjoy the fantastic vista. From there, it was an easy stroll up Binn Mhor, which, despite being only the third highest summit of the range, truly deserves its name, be it for its impressive N slopes as seen from the Western Way or for the 360° panorama it has to offer from its top. I then took the time to visit the two other minor tops listed on MV. The NE top is definitely not an Arderin Beg, for its prominence is insignificant; I also have a doubt about the E top, but both are worth a visit for the views, as they are easily reached on the way to Mullach Glas. The latter looks quite impressive from the descent, but the ascent from the col is rather easy. There is a fence edge halfway up and used it as a handrail, keeping it to my right, staying close enough to avoid the sheer drop to the left. Great views from the top as well, with many mountains ranges visible as far as Mweelrea. The descent E is pretty steep. I met four fellrunners on their way up, who told me there were "heading to the fjord". Looking at the time, I thought to myself they must have been starting around 2pm or so from the E of Corcog and would need less time to complete the whole route to Killary Harbour than it would take me to do the present walk... Well done, lads !! I then crossed the fence just before reaching the col and had a minute or two of easy scrambling up the small bulk of Cruiscin, which looks really tiny compared to its two giant neighbours, but is an interesting spot to sit on. Down to the col with Corcog, hopped over the same fence and followed it for a while as it veers right, keeping it to my right, before ascending diagonally along the W slopes of Corcog. Although the terrain on that side is quite steep and a bit hard-going, the diagonal made for a gentler incline and thus for an easier ascent than I expected, a good point at this stage of the walk. Wonderful views over S Connemara and over Lough Corrib to the E from the top of Corcog. I retraced my steps back down to the col before heading WNW across the bogland. The idea was to follow the foot of the steep cliffs of Mullach Glas and Binn Mhor to get back on the Western Way, keeping as far as possible from the farms and pastures while trying to find a convenient spot to cross the unnamed stream that runs NE along the Western Way, without having to retrace my steps back to Mam Ean. It turned out to be a bit longer than I would have expected, but the route happened to be rather straightforward. I had to cross a few low fences, but the dry ground made the going rather easy (it would probably be a bit of a slog under wet conditions). I passed by some curious rock formations, just before reaching the main stream, and I remembered noticing some similar formations just N of the Western Way on the way in. The main stream mentioned above was then crossed easily (not sure it would be the case after heavy rain, but there is always the possibility to follow it and cross it upstream) and it was then a gentle stroll down the Western Way back to the car. A fantastic day out !!
Uploaded on: Thu, 19 May 2016 (09:41:54) Trackback: http://mountainviews.ie/track/3238/ To download GPS tracks you must be enrolled and logged in. See "Login or enrol", top right - quick and easy.
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