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Post details Post   (Contract pics)
I have a query on .. by Hilltop-Harrier   (Show all posts)
Thankful for the r.. by kernowclimber   (Show all posts)
kernowclimber
2013-07-14 18:25:02
"Light show from our bivvy" from kernowclimber Contract pics
Picture: Light show from our bivvy (Contract pics)

A Baker’s Dozen in the Bluestack Mountains: 1
The heat from a glassy sun engulfed us as we left the taxi from Glenties that dropped us by a track at the side of the Barnsmore Gap Road, starting point for a 2-day 34 km traverse of the Bluestacks. Our kit (sleeping bags, mats, pillows, bivvy sacks, stove, gas, pans, food for 2 days, sundries and water) packed into Osprey Alpine packs, felt heavy as we slogged across blanket bog to Brown’s Hill. It became apparent that progress would be slow in the sapping humidity of the hottest day of the year. There was barely a breeze and the stifling air, heavy with the smell of freshly cut peat, was thick with swarming midges not deterred by deet.

Atop the hard won Brown’s Hill, the sinuous granite spine of the Bluestacks receded in the shimmering haze, each summit marked by a pimple-like cairn. These mountains feel truly remote, no well-worn tracks traverse their peaks; we saw barely a boot print. It is impossible to move quickly over the terrain of exposed slabs of granite, wiry heather, tussocks, through eroded peat hags and across sly patches of bog. The humidity was relentless and atop Croghnageer our water bladders were empty. Fortunately, numerous loughs enabled us to treat water with a UV pen to replenish supplies along the route.

On past tiny pools scattering the sun’s light like disco balls, through thick patches of dazzling white bog cotton barely moving in the almost still air, and down steep slopes over granite outcrops relentlessly reflecting the heat, dripping with perspiration we arrived at Illanicrooney Lough where we stopped for lunch. Off came the boots and socks. Refreshing my feet, which had started to resemble two steamed puddings, in the water was delectable. There was no sound save the hiss of our gas stove and the occasional whoosh of feathers as swifts flew low over the lough catching insects on the wing. We might have been all alone in the world.

Struggling in the humidity, we gained Croaghanirwore, followed by a steep descent and a lung bursting climb up to Croaghbarnes. Lough Belshade looking as if it had swallowed the entire sky, it was such a deep shade of blue, provided a brief distraction from the midges, by now pestilential. Reaching the summit of Croaghbane to be greeted by a cooling breeze which banished these vile insects was heaven! Finding a flat grassy area just below the summit cairn with a lough 100m away, we set up camp.

A Golden plover eyed us from nearby, its plaintive cries sailing through the warm evening air. We watched the sun, which had tormented us relentlessly all day, sink low in the western sky, its fierce heat now dimmed to a pleasant warmth, its glassy glare now a golden glow. There followed a fabulous light display as it became a throbbing vermillion orb which exploded over the Atlantic enflaming the entire sky. With the setting sun, the breeze receded and an army of midges quietly rose from the bog, so we retired to our bivvy sacks for the night.
Thanks for the qui.. by hbowman1   (Show all posts)
The distance to th.. by mcrtchly   (Show all posts)
Last week I was ab.. by hbowman1   (Show all posts)
Some missive to do.. by BleckCra   (Show all posts)
hi folks. We're pl.. by eugeneryan959   (Show all posts)
On Tue. 9th July t.. by Hilltop-Harrier   (Show all posts)
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RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 17 Next page >>
Summit Comment
Curra Hill: Cloudy Climb
andreos97 a day ago.
Fantastic walk, personally feel it's best starting your approach from Glenbeigh village and heading up through the forest (663 908) as it's quite well signposted. Once leaving the cover of the tre...

  
Track
Barnavave and Slieve Foye from Carlingford
simon3 a day ago.
This route mostly takes low gradient tracks to ascend to first Barnavave and then Slieve Foye.Ascending Barnavave from... walk, Len: 9.8km, Climb: 684m, Area: Barnavave, Cooley/Gullion (Ireland) Barn

  
Summit Summary
Barnavave: Double humped, easy to visit, good views.
Collaborative entry Last edit by: simon3 2 days ago.
One way to go up is from Carlingford. Start at around J1839 1095 up a path (not the adjacent track). Following the path makes for an easy ascent. It is also possible to start on the SW side for ex...

Track
Nire Valley 22km loop walk through the Gap and to Crotty's and up to Fauscoum
Ulsterpooka a week ago.
walk, Len: 20.4km, Climb: 1140m, Area: Fauscoum, Comeragh Mountains (Ireland) F...

  
Summit Comment
Knockastia: Hunting and shooting forbidden
ceadeile 5 days ago.
The path described by FergalH is now, January 2018, very overgrown. There are many thorn bushes in particular which make it a somewhat dangerous for your eyes. A simpler approach is to park at the...

  
Forum: General
Carol Morgan wins the women's Spine Race agai
IainT 3 days ago.
Carol Morgan from Dublin has come in as first woman in the Spine Race for the 2nd time after crossing the Cheviots in some of the toughest conditions in the race for years. She is over a day ahead...

Summit Comment
Banagher Hill: Better road surface - easier access now
Pepe 5 days ago.
Followed the Bluestack Way sign mentioned by Aidy. The road is well surfaced now, though narrow. Drove a couple of kilometres NW (ignoring lower-down parking areas) to a small plantation on the le...

  
Forum: General
When hill-walking meets (pre)history
David-Guenot 3 days ago.
Amazing discovery by a hill-walker. It seems the Irish hills still have many a secret to hide... http://www.thejournal.ie/ancient-human-remains-mayo-3805783-Jan2018/?utm_source=shortlinkAnd an art...

  
Track
Drumnalifferney North East Top
Aidy a week ago.
I did this route in winter conditions, and the views to be had around the Derryveagh Mountains, over Dunlewey, and ac... walk, Len: 8.7km, Climb: 577m, Area: Drumnalifferny North-East Top, Donegal NW

Summit Comment
The Ravens Rock: Crispy Morning Rock Hopping
Pepe 5 days ago.
Climbed this via the ascent up the Fox's Rock from the Long Woman's Grave. Took the direct route up (steep and slippy!) on a crunchy January morning. The light and the views were magnificent. If y...

  
Track
January Club Walk - Na Sleibhte Hillwalking Club - Route 1 (of 5 options)
GSheehy a week ago.
" 'Twas like doing the Turks challenge after the Christmas dinner." walk, Len: 31.0km, Climb: 1800m, Area: Fauscoum, Comeragh Mountains (Ireland) F...

  
Summit Comment
Slieve Bawn: Now home to a Windfarm and Recreation Area
melohara a week ago.
Slieve Bawn is now home to the Sliabh Bawn Windfarm and Recreation Area, a joint development between Coillte and Bord na Móna. Car parks have been provided and a number of walking trails developed...


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 17 Next page >>