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Post details Post   (Contract pics)
"I modelled my loo.. by jackill   (Show all posts)
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kernowclimber
2010-09-06 17:57:19
"Mourning the lack of a view? " from kernowclimber Contract pics
Picture: Mourning the lack of a view? (Contract pics)

Through the mist, dimly
‘What a day to be out on the hills!’ I berated myself as we began our ascent up the steep western slope of Rocky Mountain. The BBC weather forecast for Sunday was a work of pure fiction – what sunny intervals?! The day was indeed grim, gusty wind sending huge veils of rain pulsating over a landscape grey, dull and uninviting beneath impenetrable white cloud. My Paclite jacket clung to my arms as if my body had been vacuum-packed inside it. We spied a miserable knot of GoreTex clad walkers set out from the Leitrim Lodge car park, but that was the last we saw of anyone all day. Atop Rocky Mountain it was difficult to remain upright as the wind did its worst, one small consolation being that the rain had turned to mizzle. We did not tarry long, heading south on a trail that had become a rivulet, amazed at the volume of water cascading off saturated peat hags nearby. Amid the swirling mist from a broad platform of granite at Pierces Castle, intriguing vistas flashed before us to be snatched quickly from view: rugged tors, angular slopes, hulks of mountains near and far, a serpentine river far below. Over Hilltown, a watery rainbow shimmered momentarily only to be swallowed in the gloom.

Castle Bog then lay in wait: a ghastly other worldly place of drifting mist, brackish water and floating mats of moss that swallowed all semblance of the track we were following. Even the bog cotton had given up the ghost here, trailing sodden heads tinged with green slime. Thank goodness for map, compass and GPS, for in such conditions this place could be a truly terrifying experience. We squelched and sloshed our way to the foot of Shanlieve to follow Batts Wall upwards. An eerie silence fell as wraithlike mist enveloped us and great monoliths and jagged lumps of granite appeared in the gloom as we scrambled our way upwards, the only sound my laboured breathing as my body sweated and strained under layers of GoreTex.

Near the summit, the wind returned with a vengeance almost ripping the clothes from our bodies and continued to brutally buffet us as we headed towards Eagle’s summit. We scurried for shelter behind Batts Wall where we passed a barely tolerable 15 minutes to eat our lunch. The wall provided scant cover as we descended towards Windy Gap where another lung bursting climb lay ahead to conquer Slievemoughanmore. Darkening cloud encroaching from the west promising heavy rain prompted us to seek lower ground, so we followed the Rowan Tree River on saturated, slippery ground, picking up a gravel track that ran alongside the Rocky River beneath the rugged tors of Hen Mountain. A brisk walk up the Sandbank Road took us back to the now near deserted car park at Lietrim Lodge after a 16km walk and over 1,000m of ascent.

Far from mourning the lack of views, the fleeting glimpses through the mist of an enchanting landscape engendered a sense of intrigue that served to galvanise our desire to return to explore this section of the Mournes.
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RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 23 Next page >>
Summit Comment
Slieve Bawn: No longer a drive-up
TommyMc an hour ago.
A series of new road barriers means that it's no longer possible to drive further than the car park on the Strokestown side. A very pleasant walk uphill from the car park to the summit and back to...

  
Summit Comment
Mangerton North Top: On the way to Mangerton
MountainHunter 9 hours ago.
I started at Point A car park and followed the path. At about 520m (-9.4817 51.9882) the path swings westward, as you walk along the path, the coum for the Devil's Punchbowl comes into view. After...

  
Summit Comment
Knockalongy South-West Top: Choose your highest point
madfrankie 10 hours ago.
Whichever turfy outcrop is the highest point now may not be in 10 years time.

Summit Comment
Knockalongy South-West Top: Beware of the barrier
madfrankie 10 hours ago.
We followed sandman's route to the summit which is probably the best way to explore Knockalongy and its satellites. Gentle gradients but many eroded peat hags. Worth noting that the forest barrier...

  
Track
Kate's to John's - Na Sléibhte Club Walk
GSheehy a day ago.
When we set up the club we said it was all about the economics of supply and demand - if we supplied challenging walk... walk, Len: 24.9km, Climb: 2015m, Area: Tomies North Top, Purple Mountain (Irel

  
Track
Carrauntoohil via the 'Back Ladder' from the Bridia Valley
peter1 2 days ago.
Park at a small turning place, just opposite The Stepping Stone / Cooky Monsters accommodation and cafe.The route fol... walk, Len: 11.5km, Climb: 1097m, Area: Carrauntoohil, MacGillycuddy's Reeks (I

Summit Comment
Mweelrea: Coastal mountains
simon3 3 days ago.
Ben Bury and Mweelrea form an impressive sight from Clare Island.

  
Summit Comment
Caherbarnagh East Top: An unremarkable summit, worth the visit for the views.
David-Guenot 6 days ago.
The summit is unremarkable though easy to spot as it lies along the fence.

  
Summit Comment
Caherbarnagh East Top: An easy stroll from Caherbarnagh.
David-Guenot 6 days ago.
There is a gate to cross when coming down from the cairn at the NE end of the main Caherbarnagh ridge (I found it was actually easier to cross the fence just right of the gate). There is a faint t...

Summit Comment
Binn Bhriocáin: Long views of a stepped descent.
simon3 3 days ago.
Letterbreckaun can be seen from Clare island, around 33km away. It appears between Mweelrea and the high ground towards the Sheefrys.

  
Summit Comment
Caherbarnagh East Top: A worthwhile addition.
David-Guenot 6 days ago.
This summit is easily reached from the main Caherbarnagh ridge and seems easy enough to get to from Curracahill as well. If coming from Caherbarnagh, best is to cross the fence just before the col...

  
Summit Comment
The Paps East: Two shapely hills.
TommyV a week ago.
There is a forestry road in the Clydagh Valley with parking at W12955 83343. Following this road will lead you out onto the open mountain. From here it's a steep pull up to spot height 562 metres ...


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 23 Next page >>