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david kirk
2009-10-29 21:14:53
Getting old? Aim high!
You old(er) farts of Ireland - awake . . . !
Youve enjoyed decades of rambling and scrambling, of enjoying the good grey rock that loves the grasping hand but now, probably past 60 (or, like some people I know, past 40!) youre getting, well, not lazy exactly, but age and booze are threatening to take a toll and you find that the tracks between the mountains more alluring than the summits that used to lure you.
Big mistake! Huge! And its all in the mind. Theres a simple formula the less you do the less fit you become, the less fit you become the less you feel like doing, the less you feel like doing, the less you do . . . etc - a downward spiral that can lead tragically to spending the precious remaining time of your life watching tele-crap instead of the views from high places.
When you first recognise the symptoms act! The answer is to Set yourself an annual challenge that involves a programme of ascents which you MUST do and most importantly ensures that you maintain a minimum level of activity that keeps you fit to continue doing what you always loved.
I recognised the problem eight years ago and my solution was to commit myself to doing every 2000-ft summit in the Mournes at least once every year. There are 12 (11 actually but I declared Doan an honorary 2000-footer because its a lovely wee hill) and while Im lucky in that the Mournes offer such a challenge within easy driving from Belfast, most walkers in Ireland could devise something similar wherever they are. If you dont enjoy walking on your own, form a club with others of your age to do a monthly summit.
Its not always easy (its funny how the hills get higher every year must be tectonic activity!) but its worth it in terms of maintaining a level of fitness that enables you to continue enjoying the hills. Im 73 now and have just come down off Eagle to complete this years batch. On the way home from my last summit of the year, as an ultimate added incentive , I stop at the off-licence and treat myself to a bottle of good Scotch malt, a Laphroaig or a Lagavulan (sorry, if Ireland produced a malt fit for mountain walkers I would buy it, but . . .) which is my companion over Christmas as I reminisce over summits enjoyed - again.
What are they phot.. by jackill   (Show all posts)


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 23 Next page >>
Forum: General
Misty Morning Hills.
tomlug48 3 hours ago.
Coming down off Djouce in the early morning and gazing at the beautiful mist shrouded silhouettes of the south Wicklow hills .

  
Track
Pouy de Hourmigué
David-Guenot a day ago.
walk, Len: 17.9km, Climb: 1379m, Area: France, Occitanie ()

  
Track
The Laugavegur (Hot Springs) Trail, Iceland
mcrtchly 5 days ago.
Listed as one of the top twenty best treks in the world by National Geographic, the Laugavegur Trail (The Hot Spring Rou walk, Len: 56.6km, Climb: 1414m, Area: Iceland, South ()

Track
Drumnalifferny loop
David-Guenot 6 days ago.
Exploring Drumnalifferny as to bag the NE top. Fantastic views once the clouds lifted. I also spent some time to clim... walk, Len: 8.6km, Climb: 542m, Area: Drumnalifferny Mountain, Donegal NW (Irel

  
Summit Comment
Cullaun: A quick bag.
TommyV 2 weeks ago.
Aidand's directions are spot on. The road that looks like an entrance to a house actually leads into a forest, it is rough but manageable if you drive very slow. I drove as far as an old abandoned...

  
Summit Comment
Mauherslieve: Mother of God!!
TommyV 2 weeks ago.
What can I say about Mauherslieve? It really is one of those mountains that will have you asking yourself "What am I doing? Started out at the livestock pen mentioned by csd. It is important to no...

Track
The shortest route up Knocklayd
David-Guenot 6 days ago.
walk, Len: 4.8km, Climb: 372m, Area: Knocklayd, Antrim Hills (Ireland) Knocklay...

  
Summit Summary
Coomura Mountain: Prairies and precipices
Collaborative entry Last edit by: Peter Walker 2 weeks ago.
Teetering on the northern edge of the extensive plateau extending north from Knocknagantee in the Dunkerrons, Coomura Mountain presents very differing forms of complexity depending on viewpoint. I...

  
Summit Summary
Knocknacusha: There and back again
Collaborative entry Last edit by: Peter Walker 2 weeks ago.
You can start at Ballaghisheen, a mountain pass V671 792. Space here for 3-4 cars. Ballaghisheen is at just over 300m so the climb to the top at around 551m is not a great strain. There is a sign ...

Summit Comment
Cooneen Hill: Very average
TommyV 2 weeks ago.
Nothing to add to simon3's directions. Like quite a few of the hills in North Tipperary, this one is through a Coilte forest track to begin with and then the tough push through some horrible groun...

  
Summit Summary
Meenteog: Squat and steep-sided summit on Glenbeigh Horseshoe
Collaborative entry Last edit by: Peter Walker 2 weeks ago.
Lumpen in its higher reaches but very much steep-sided lower down (especially to the north), Meenteog is the first of the higher, more dramatic summits on the Glenbeigh Horseshoe if walked clockwi...

  
Track
The easy way up Doire Ui Fhril
David-Guenot 6 days ago.
walk, Len: 1.7km, Climb: 50m, Area: Doire U? Fhr?l, Derryveagh Mountains (Irela...


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