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A fine area I woul.. by jackill   (Show all posts)
Was thinking of do.. by Dessie1   (Show all posts)
gernee
2010-09-19 20:55:50
Big Thumbs Up for Challenge Training!
For anyone who has read Bleck Cra’s offer of Challenge Training, this is a whole hearted endorsement of same! (and just for Macclimber – there wasn’t a white coat in sight!!!)

Having ambled along at a Grade 2 Level for the past 10 years or so, himself and myself decided this summer it was time for a new challenge and to up our fitness levels. So what better to aim for than the Mourne Seven Sevens? (nothing like aiming high!!!) After a number of outings we built up to doing the first 5 peaks in around 7 hours (with some tough ones yet to come). We thought this was pretty good (for us) but still we might not make the time cut off at the Ben Crom Dam and so opted out of this year’s event.

So it piqued my interest when I saw a post from Bleck Cra offering to meet up with anyone who was interested in picking up some tips on how those Challenge Walkers manage it all. After talking himself into it, we arranged to meet Mr Cra and see how we might improve our timings and be in with a chance of cracking the Seven Sevens next year. Himself had no idea what someone could tell us about walking that would make any real difference, and I was wondering if I had bitten off more than I could chew! But what a difference 4 hours in the company of “The nimble and very lithe Bleck Cra” can make!

We arrived at the Happy Valley Car Park a few minutes early to be greeted by a solitary big smiling Scottish face. With the charm (and it has to be said looks) of Billy Connolly, we were soon at ease with our new acquaintance. We set off up the track at a fair pace (I think he was getting the measure of us) and soon settled down to a relaxed but continuous trek.

We really are amazed that simple tips on pace, stride, speed, route selection, confidence etc etc can make such a difference. We reckon we knocked 40-50% off our ascent times up Slieve Bearnagh on today’s trip alone! Add to that the opportunity to spend some time walking in the Mournes with someone as knowledgeable and affable as Cra, and you cannot really ask for more.

We definitely need to train a bit more as the new techniques seem to call on some different muscles but by my reckoning, we hope to knock a good 30% off our previous target which should bring the 2011 Seven Sevens into comfortable reach. And what’s more, we have probably saved ourselves many months of ‘training in vain’ – by learning the right techniques up front.

But the training is not just for Challenge Walkers. I would whole heartedly encourage anyone who would just like to learn an easier way to climb those hills to get in touch with Cra – it will be time well (and enjoyably!) spent!

All of which leaves me with two things on my to-do list. Post a big thank-you to Cra for his time and patience and get ourselves back to the Mournes to put all our new knowledge to use.
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RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 22 Next page >>
Summit Comment
An Bhinn Bhuí: Benwee Head Loop.
sandman 12 hours ago.
As already stated Benwee Head has some of the most dramatic costal scenery in Ireland and with this in mind i decided to enjoy on a clear sunny day the joys of walking the 12.4km of the Benwee Hea...

  
Track
Meelin Hill, Brackloon and Knockafeehane
Bunsen7 15 hours ago.
A grand and simple waymarked trail for a day of low lying cloud.Park up at the post office beside the Tom Crean mini-p... walk, Len: 7.2km, Climb: 343m, Area: Knockafeehane, Slieve Mish (Ireland) Kno

  
Summit Comment
Knocknanacree: Storm Beach and Cliffs at lower western reaches
Bunsen7 14 hours ago.
A view of "Acres" from Minard Beach. This is apparently a geologically interesting spot in itself as it is a storm beach comprised of large sandstone boulders. The castle is on private land and no...

Track
Eagles Hill, Mullaghbeg, Beenrour
bogtrotter 16 hours ago.
There?s plenty of room for parking at the cemetery at the top of Coad Road, near Castle Cove. From here we headed SW ... walk, Len: 21.6km, Climb: 825m, Area: Eagles Hill, Dunkerron Mountains (Irelan

  
Forum: General
An Sli
Slier159 a day ago.
Hello all,I am currently trying to organize a longs distance walk from Killarney to Derry city, using the existing National Waymarked Trails along the West coast. A 1,000km of Trail already exist ...

  
Summit Comment
Knockafeehane: From the horse's mouth
Bunsen7 15 hours ago.
This is the trail description post at Q59652 00497. It summarises the route if taken from east to west, as per track 3881.Vastly superior to my own garbled efforts!Annascaul obviously is a very we...

Track
Erris Head Loop
simon3 21 hours ago.
Simple walk to Erris Head. On the occasion we did it, there were dark clouds and big showers. walk, Len: 4.7km, Climb: 98m, Area: Erris Head Hill, Mayo Coastal Hill (Ireland...

  
Summit Comment
Knockafeehane: Easily Accessible and not overly demanding
Bunsen7 15 hours ago.
There is a waymarked trail to the summit which loops over the ridge leading west from this hill. See track 3881.The quickest route to the top would see you park in Annascaul village and walk up th...

  
Summit Comment
Cashloura: An enjoyable walk for all ages
CaminoPat 2 days ago.
Park at W20849 49704 at Coillte forest entrance just off the R586 Regional Road between Dunmanway and Drimoleague. Parking available for 6-8 cars. Follow forest road which is along line of disused...

Summit Comment
An Bhinn Bhuí: Benwee Loop walk towards Portacloy.
ucampbell 3 days ago.
The Loop walks here are well signposted, it's a great idea to go out onto each headland.

  
Summit Comment
Doonvinalla N Top: Coastal Hill
sandman 3 days ago.
On 26/4/2014 i spent a very enjoyable afternoon walking this area visiting the army observation hut and the stone constructed EIRE marking as part of an addition to the Benwee Head Loop walk but i...

  
Forum: General
Riddle of the Spinc
BleckCra 5 days ago.
I was at Glendalough yesterday and on the Spinc for the first time. I cannot imagine there haven't already been a thousand hours debate on the boardwalk and and that there won't be a thousand hour...


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 22 Next page >>