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Harry Goodman
2009-10-08 19:36:23
"On Knockmealdown, August 2008, Job Done!" from Harry Goodman Contract pics
Picture: On Knockmealdown, August 2008, Job Done! (Contract pics)

Walking the Irish County Tops
At last, Ireland's County Tops completed and in a record time! While I fully realise that others have completed them in a single year or even less I think I have set a record for the "longest " time taken to do so, a mere thirty seven years and three months. Not a record I suspect anyone will be anxious to better.
It all began in 1971 when I climbed Slieve Donard (Down). Someone talked me into tackling the Mourne Wall Walk, at that time an annual challenge event of 22 miles with upwards of 10,000ft of climb over twelve of the Mourne peaks. This was to be my introduction to hillwalking and, though safely negotiated in something over 12 hours, so traumatic was the experience that I did not set foot again on any kind of hill for over 10 years.By then a more moderate approach was taken.
Hillwalking days out led me to climb among others Errigal (Donegal), Galtymore (Limerick/Tipperary), Carrauntoohil (Kerry), Cuilcagh (Cavan/Fermanagh), Benbaun (Galway), Sawel (Derry/Tyrone), and Lugnaquillia (Wicklow).
Then after a chance meeting with Paul Clements, when he talked to me about his plans to publish "The Height of Nonesense" recounting his experiences when seeking out the highest point in each county, I was hooked.
Having at that stage (2005) stood on the highest point in 17 counties I decided to set about completing the list. Mweelrea (Mayo) gave me most concern. I had read that this was a serious mountain. Next came Corn Hill (Longford), Mullaghmeen (West Meath) amd Slieve Na Calliagh (Meath) all covered in a single trip. Cupidstown Hill (Kildare) followed. Indeed of these four lower tops only the walk through the forest to Mullaghmeen had any real appeal. Mount Leinster (Carlow/Wexford),and Brandon Hill (Kilkenny) were climbed during a week-end walking in the Blackstairs.

By July 2008 four tops remained unclimbed. Walks in the Slieve Blooms included Arderin (Laois/Offaly) and allowed a visit further west to take in Moylussa (Clare).
In August a friend and I , in thick mist climbed up from the Priest's Leap to Knockboy (Cork) and a day later came Knockmealdown and the completion of my County Tops List. The day had started fine and warm but mist soon descended and enclosed the tops crossed in our traverse of the Eastern Knockmealdown Ridge. the highlight of the day was of course to top out on Knockmealdown on 25 August 2008..
I would recommend to anyone thinking about doing the County Tops not to be too single minded and, where possible, to combine the walks with other hills. With the exception of Cupidstown Hill (Kildare) and Corn Hill (Longford) which will be singled out and climbed simply because they are part of the list , all the others have something to offer be it the challenge of Mweelrea, the history surrounding Slieve Na Calliagh or the tranquillity of "lowly" Mullaghmeen. a few Kippure, Truskmore, it's SE Top and Mount Leinster have "tarmac" to the top but this can be avoided with planning.
As many people ask.. by pazapas   (Show all posts)


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 15 Next page >>
Track
Near Bweengduff, Boggeragh Mountains (Ireland)
caiomhin a day ago.
walk, Len: 7.4km, Climb: 181m, Area: Bweengduff, Boggeragh Mountains (Ireland) ...

  
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simon3 a day ago.
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RE: Morocco - advice for tackling Jebel Toubk
muzag 3 days ago.
@spiider28 Handy article with logistical tips here :https://www.irishmountaineeringclub.org/travelling-light-in-the-high-atlas-mountains/

Summit Comment
Slemish: tea at the top
Parts999 3 days ago.
great views my kids and i are going to as many mountian tops as we can, we call it tea at the topit great fun

  
Summit Comment
Knocknamuck: Summit of the Slieveardagh Hills
Wilderness 5 days ago.
If you fancy a longer walk you can start at the car park just outside Grange at S309566. From here I walked clockwise round the Crag Forest Loop until I reached the Wellington Monument. I then joi...

  
Track
Blackstairs Challenge 2018
David-Guenot 4 days ago.
Different finish on this year's challenge, adding some 3km over good forest tracks. Best weather conditions we could ... walk, Len: 34.2km, Climb: 1491m, Area: Mount Leinster East Top, Blackstairs Mo

Summit Comment
Sliabh Tuaidh Far W Top: All About The Journey, Not The Destination
Aidy a week ago.
I had a mixed day weatherwise, with dark skies, rain and flat light one minute, and blue skies the next, but it only added to the spectacular views to be had from the summit. If anything, the view...

  
Track
Glenbeigh Horseshoe, extended version
David-Guenot 4 days ago.
A peak-bagger's trip over the beautiful Glenbeigh Horseshoe, with plenty of time allowed for filming. walk, Len: 41.7km, Climb: 1906m, Area: Seefin, Glenbeigh Horseshoe (Ireland) Se...

  
Forum: General
Kenmare next week.
simon3 3 days ago.
Anyone interested in hillwalking next week?Contact sstewart04@mountainviews.ie

Summit Comment
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Wilderness a week ago.
I climbed this mountain coming from the West side from Oughtmore mountain. I've never tried it but I'm sure Spelhoagh can also be easily accessed from the Moneyneany Road on the East side as well ...

  
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Brassel Mountain
David-Guenot 4 days ago.
walk, Len: 3.0km, Climb: 458m, Area: Brassel Mountain, MacGillycuddy's Reeks (I...

  
Summit Comment
Dromderalough: Here we go again
peter1 2 weeks ago.
Ah yes...The Dromderaloughs...in cloud and rain...'climb me once, shame on me, climb me twice, shame on thee'.I had climbed Dromderalough some years ago in Autumn, in cloud and rain, using Paddy D...


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 15 Next page >>