Fern Member discovers rare fern in the Kerry mountains.
Two videos featured this month from gerrym and ToughSoles. We are all in the gutter with Covid, but we can still look at the stars. (Apologies to Oscar Wilde)
Some of the things we generally report on aren't happening at the moment, but some are and that includes the outstanding collection of pictures that came in last month, making the choice for POTM difficult.
of the month
This lough is over a km south of the better known Cloon Lough in the Dunkerrons, about 3km SW of Mullaghanattin. Rare to get any Irish lake quite so calm. For
original comment, click here.
Bonus Picture 1, from the many candidates for POTM
Coomavoher Headwall, with Knockmoyle in the background.
This hidden gem of a valley has 5 lakes (arguably 6) and is well worth a visit. Skyline: left is Knockmoyle, right in the background, the McGillycuddy's Reeks. For
original track, click here.
Bonus Picture 3
This is more a picture taken in the mountains rather than a picture of a mountain. It is an extraordinary technical achievement, showing off our galaxy + Mars + the Andromeda Galaxy through clear skies. It provides a reminder of more earthly change through featuring the desolate remains of the abandoned Anglican church in Dunlewey. For
original comment which is well worth reading, click here.
Featured Track of the Month Wild Wild Life
This month's selection sees peter1 enjoying a couple of days backpacking through the copious tangle of wilderness in the heart of the Dunkerrons (see also mountainviews.ie/track/4380/) to the west of Knocknagantee. Manna from heaven for the hardier hillwalker, with truly spectacular scenery.
peter1 on Day 1 of 2:
Main walk Start: 14:54, End: 18:46, Duration: 3h51m, Length: 10.5km,Ascent: 756m, Descent: 451m Places: Start at V67286 70272, Cnoc na gCáinte (mullach thiar), Cnoc Breasail, end at V64739 72044 3.1km NW from Start(statistics such as Ascent or Length etc should be regarded as approximate. Duration depends on the speed of the person making the track)
This is my track from day 1 of a 2 day trip. Please see track 4381 for day 2.
I camped overnight beside Lough Coomavaranniha below Cnoc Breasail. Others have written about how rough and wild the terrain is in this area and I can only agree! Starting from the valley north of Sneem, I followed the vehicle track that rises almost to the summit of Knocknagantee and the view from it's Western ridge is stunning:
Knockmoyle from Knocknagantee West Ridge. I think this area lends itself well to backpacking because carrying the extra weight means travelling slowly which helps with the rough terrain and with being able to stop regularly to admire the views:
Slievenashaska from the slopes of Cnoc Breasail. Sunday morning at 7.00 and I was up and making breakfast and 'on the road' for 8am. Climbing up out of the valley was a bit tricky, and having read about others having some difficulty in descending to the western side of Lough Coom'anniha, I decided to try an ascent from the eastern side, which went well apart from one or two short, steep rock steps.
Lough Coomavaranniha below Cnoc Breasail. The walk is approx 25.5kms in total (by my Viewranger app) with 1127m ascent and a walking time of just under 10 hours. I found the going very tough and hugely enjoyable and would encourage anyone who hasn't been in these mountains yet, to give it a go. Keep it for clear weather though, both for easier navigation and for the views. Regarding navigation, every 10m or so, involves decision making, especially on the descents as its difficult to find a clear and direct route down.
NORTH: I Want To Ride My Bicycle. And My Ferry.
MountainViews' own personal Marco Pantani Onzy has decided to start preparing for his triathlon career by taking to his bike around the shores of Carlingford Lough, utilising various greenways and roads (and the ferry) to make his way around the nearly 60km. Just walking isn't fast enough, apparently.
Onzy on Cycle: Circuit of Carlingford Lough
Distance was 58k of which 4k was on a ferry - actual cycling time around 3 hours .... sometimes walking is too slow...| cycle, Len: 2.8km, Climb: 197m, Area: Cooley/Gullion (Ireland) ... Click here ...
NORTH: An energy-sapping exercise in masochism!
Uneven terrain and knee-length heather and grass conspired to make the ascent of Slievemeel in the Mournes the stuff of nightmares for Colin Murphy!
Colin Murphy on Slievemeel, (Sliabh Míol): An energy-sapping exercise in masochism.
The was the third top in a three-summit circular walk involving Tievedockaragh and Finlieve, and by far the most unpleasant. Having bagged Finlieve I backtracked to J227 217 leaving me with a trek of 2.5km in a SW direction. It seemed straightforward enough except that for the entire journey the landscape was covered in knee-length grasses and heather, and the ground was extremely uneven. The fina ... ... Click here ...
NORTH: Wild flattish top with fine views
Two substantial comments this month on Croaghan Hill in north Antrim, recounting the delights and perils of the ascent.
Harry Goodman on Croaghan, (Cruachán): Wild flattish top.
Climbed Croaghan, with a friend, on 26 Jan 2010. We started at Altarichard Car Park D123293 and turned left along the road until we reached a waymarker with red and blue arrows pointing the way to the hill D120297. The route we followed was the 6.5 miles Breen Forest Trail (red arrows). At present the waymarking will safely guide the walker around this loop walk but for added security, should t ... ... Click here ...
WEST: Open Bowls
One of the classic hillwalks of Kerry is the round of the Devil's Punchbowl and the ascent of Mangerton, and kitog has taken the chance to include the outlying summit of Glencappul Top (whilst bravely eschewing the delights of Mangerton's actual summit). Regardless, it remains a fun leg-stretcher with the possibility of making a longer day of things by venturing onwards to the remoter summits of Stoompa.
kitog on Near Glencappul Top, Mangerton (Ireland)
| walk, Len: 21.7km, Climb: 1680m, Area: Glencappul Top, Mangerton (Ireland) Glencappul Top, Mangerton North Top ... Click here ...
Featured summit comment
A Knowledgeable Washer Woman gerrym
gerrym encountered just such a lady on his lengthy approach to Cronamuck in the Bluestacks of Donegal. His Sep 6 post entitled "Start of a brilliant ridge leading to the Bluestacks" outlines a different and highly scenic route into the famous hills of Donegal
Started at the Old School House in the Reelan River Valley and followed the Sli na Finne over open hillside, forest track and a quiet country lane. This was some 10km away from the summit, though it made sense for the circuit I had planned, accessing the main Bluestacks via the ridge starting with Cronamuck. Stopped for a good chat with a woman hanging out her washing who knew the names of the hills I was about to climb much better than me :-)
Followed a track off the road at H0118 9424 A which crossed the Owengarve River. This went past a house where I was prepared to ask permission though didn't see anyone. I had to open/close a couple of gates after the house on an old bog track. A further river crossing of the Owendoo River is required, though without the aid of a bridge this time. It was fairly easy for me to cross and I would expect this to be much more difficult after wet weather.
It was a good climb up Cronamuck, though nowhere near as steep as its distant profile had suggested. The views up the Owendoo River Valley were stunning and with height the corrie lough of Cronloughan, nestled below Glascarns Hill became visible. With height the grass satisfyingly gave way increasingly to rock - as with many of the hills in the Bluestacks.
There are a number of little tops on the summit and the area is well worth exploring for the outstanding views in all directions. There is also a beautiful little lough that is well worth visiting to gather breath or some water. A great ridge walk was laid out before me to Croaghbarnes and then on to the main Bluestacks. This was a great alternative to my traditional route up Glacarns Hill, though did clock up quite a few extra km :-)
Photo: Gerrym, Looking towards Croaghbane from Cronamuck
SOUTH: A view earned the hard way!
Bracken, brambles, gorse, elephant grass and holes had to be overcome to bag Eagle Hill in the Dunkerron Hills, writes Fergalh, but the effort was worth it.
Fergalh on Eagle Hill, (An Ráth): Not as simple as the map suggests !
Parked at the west at V 532570 there than followed a long struggle through bracken, brambles, gorse, elephant grass and holes in the ground until you get to the upper levels where the grass is short enough and evidence of horses abound. Fantastic views of Derrynane beach and the bay await you. A small hill but for anyone who dismisses this hill should bear in mind it is a challenge to get up and d ... ... Click here ...
SOUTH: Reflections on a mountain
Peter1 takes advantage of a beautiful autumn day to capture Coomura Mountain reflected in Lough Reagh.
peter1 on Coomura Mountain: Lough Reagh reflection
I climbed up through the Lough Reagh Aiguilles on Sunday and spotted Coomura reflected in the still waters of Lough Reagh on the walk in. ... Click here ...
SOUTH: Stunning mountain, unwelcome signs
Kerrys Broaghnabinnia merits no less than three comments lauding its merits, but also bemoaning the appearance of Keep Out signs.
odonogc on Broaghnabinnia, (Bruach na Binne): No access to Lough Reagh
We went to the Black Valley today (17/09/2020) to hike in via Lough Reagh, but there are new signs on the gate saying "Private Property, Keep Out".
We weren't able to poke out an alternative way to access the lake so we climbed from the west instead, via the Kerry Way.
Just be aware of this if you're planning to tackle the hills on the southern side of the Black Valley. ... Click here ...
EAST: Great Mountain, Simple Climb
Pepe enjoys a trundle up Croaghanmoira in Wicklow, which offers fantastic views and unlike many of its neighbours, is properly mountain-shaped.
Pepe on Croaghanmoira, (Cruachán Mhaigh Rath): Great Mountain, Simple Climb
As e2rd mentions in an earlier comment: there are many ways to climb this mountain. Driving from Glenmalure, I parked at a parking place on the RHS of the road about half a click north of Point A. From here cross the road to where a narrow path stretches up through the trees to the forestry track. Once out on the track turn left and from here it's a simple matter to follow your nose along the trac ... ... Click here ...
EAST: Up (to) the junction
Glenmalure is the longest valley in Wicklow, and in its higher reaches is surrounded by high, relatively popular hills. But further down the walls rise slightly lower but doubtless quieter, and it is here where simon3 chose to visit. His track takes in the Mountains of Kirikee and Carriglineen, and he found some excellent and proportionate views of the higher summits and some recently felled ground that needs careful negotiation.
simon3 on Kirikee and Carriglineen, excellent viewpoints.
This is a fairly short walk starting from Glenmalure Lodge and taking in Kirikee and Carriglineen. Both of these are exc| walk, Len: 10.1km, Climb: 478m, Area: Kirikee Mountain, Dublin/Wicklow (Irelan ... Click here ...
EAST: Coming down is looking up.
The removal of forestry on Wicklows Camenabologue has made the descent a great deal easier, reports Pepe.
Pepe on Camenabologue SE Top, (Céim na mBulóg (mullach thoir theas)): Easier to get down from the col now
The col between Camenabologue SE Top and Camenabologue proper, that is. It's easier now because much of the forestry has been removed from the slopes hereabouts. Mind you, the slope is steep in places and the going is soggy and treacherous. You need to have your wits about you, but with care should get down and save yourself and your boots a bit of mileage on the track back to Baravore carpark. ... Click here ...
MIDLANDS: Ireland's Heart
ceadeile has spent an unusual couple of hours being guided (for a charge, and it's the only way to gain access unless you care not for the wishes of the farmer or their pair of spectacular-looking bulls) around the Midland eminence of Uisneach. For that charge you get a slightly Easter Island-esque representation of Ériu, a glacial erratic that is reputedly the centre of Ireland and it seems like a good time was had by all.
ceadeile on The Hill of Uisneach
Photo of Information board located at visitor centre On 5th September 2020 I had the good luck and good sense to spend a| walk, Len: 3.4km, Climb: 112m, Area: Uisneach, North Midlands (Ireland) Uisne ... Click here ...
Sorry if we didn't mention what you posted .. there's a list of all contributors for recent month(s) later.
Irish Peaks: A Celebration of Ireland's Highest Mountains.
As we mentioned last month The Irish Peaks book has finally been brought out by Mountaineering Ireland. We understand that MI originally printed 2000 and are looking to produce more.
We will be doing our review of the book next month's quarterly
I strongly recommend anyone interested in hillwalking in Ireland buy the book.
Once, in an earlier part of my life I was a manager in a printing works ( I even have a diploma in Print Production Management) so I had an inkling of the scale of the task given that MI apparently undertook to distribute the book themselves. I understand they are considering other options now. Not surprising in view of the amount of work involved. Even the storage. The book weighs 1680 gm and 2000 of them would be 3.2 tonnes.
A place for those interested in Challenge Walking
We put out our call for contributions for the Annual in early Jan 2020. We got a great response
with eventually 36 articles of various sorts coming in. As a community we can be proud of this
OK, it is a way off and will probably have to be produced in the Covid era. But consider this, the requirement is for well illustrated, concise
articles. And these can take some advance thought. So think of what photos might look well in an
article when out walking during the year. Perhaps take notes to keep what you eventually write
vivid and fresh. And we do want to lift ourselves out of the Covid gloom.
We will consider any topics of interest to hillwalkers.
For example articles on what we did under lockdown, Challenge Walking (both organised and individual), Way Walking (ie walking Way Marked Ways), Summiteering,
Family Walking, Gear, Flora & Fauna, Holiday
Walking, Scrambling, Coastal or Island walking, things you may see on the hills etc are all
welcome as are new ideas. We welcome articles from people who are starting out hillwalking, or
experienced or professionals etc.
If you are thinking of contributing or would like to discuss topics etc get in touch.
Volunteering for 2020: Strengthening the MountainViews Committee
Currently we have a number of officers on the committee such as chairperson, secretary etc. We
really could use some further committee members to achieve our strategic goals and spread the
For those taking an interest in the MV committee or indeed committees in general we
can also use some further "regular" committee members without a specific role. There
are many smaller quite finite projects that might suit regular members.
MountainViews is a great resource based on over 1300 people's contributions over 18
years. Great that is if you have heard of it. And that's where we could use some
practical publicity help.
The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth
Quite apart from programmers, MV's progress can also use help from
people who can really follow through on tasks like creating lists, checking stats,
researching place names or geology. Whether on the committee or not we value such
SUMMITEERS and PLACE-VISITORS CORNER
A place for those interested in Summiteering, Bagging, Highpointing, visiting islands and coastal places.
A Guide to Ireland's Mountain Summits - The Vandeleur-Lynams & The Arderins
MountainViews first book available online and in some bookshops. The first reprint with numerous
minor amendments is available.
simon3 on A Guide to Irelands Mountain Summits
MountainViews first book available online and in many bookshops.
As members will know, for over a decade, Mountainviews.ie has been providing unique information to hillwalkers on all aspects of exploring and enjoying Ireland's upland areas. It's been a collaborative effort by over 1000 of you, and currently contains over 6000 comments on 1057 mountains and hills on the island of Ireland ... ... Click here ...
Bulk sales to groups such as Scouts/ Guides: contact firstname.lastname@example.org for a discounted price.
More subareas coming.
In a bid to make the description of Irish mountain areas more granular, we have been increasing the number of sub-areas within mountain areas. Bit of a mouthful that, so here's an example. Most recently we are working to ensure that all the summits listed under "Donegal NW" are further subdivided into smaller regions such as "Derryveagh Mountains". There isn't a generally accepted way of doing this division, so it isn't totally straightforward. We will be adding what we believe are logical sub-areas such as "Killybegs Hills", "Glengesh" and "Sliabh Tuaidh". We hope that this will be a useful term for use in route descriptions etc.
If you know the area and have suggestions, please do comment. Nothing is irreversible.
Arderins Photos Wanted
Last month we mentioned that MV has agreed with MI (through its Hillwalking Committee) to promote the Arderins as the headline list of Irish mountains. We are looking for good photos for use in promoting them. Pictures usually need to show the mountain in the middle distance, in good weather.
(Information above and below are since we last presented such figures, which is generally a month but can be longer when we don't have an html newsletter.)
Our contributors to all threads this month:
Aidy (1), Bunsen7 (1), Carolyn105 (1), Colin Murphy (3), David-Guenot (1), Djouce (1), Fergalh (3), Granitemug (1), Harry Goodman (1), MichaelG55 (4), Onzy (11), Pepe (3), TommyV (1), Val Jones (1), ahendroff (2), caillin_deas (1), ceadeile (1), chelman7 (1), ciaranr (1), davsheen (2), gerrym (2), Communal summary entries (8), kitog (1), liz50 (2), madfrankie (1), markmjcampion (1), mcrtchly (1), melohara (1), muddyboots (1), noucamp (3), nupat (1), odonogc (1), pdtempan (4), peter1 (2), scannerman (1), simon3 (2), wintersmick (1)
For a fuller list view Community |
MountainViews now has 9654 comments about 1827 different
hills, mountains, island and coastal features out of the total in our current full list
(2201). We want to get a good gps track showing each of the major ways to visit each
of these places and summits in Ireland. If you see an option to add a "Short Summary" then do
please consider creating one since another objective is to have a short summary for every summit
and island and coastal feature in Ireland. There's quite a few (374)
opportunities for you to be the first to comment on a place, not so many on summits, however
lots of opportunities for islands and coastal features as we bring them out. We also have around
2700 shared GPS tracks, mostly in Ireland. Apart from a few popular areas, there is a need for
more routes in many different areas. Plain shared tracks without descriptions are welcome
however if you have time then do please add route descriptions with photos.
If you are contributing, please be careful to respect the interests of landowners.
Suggest access routes well away from houses, gardens or that could conceivably impact
farming activities. When walking, keep away from gardens or farm buildings. Use stiles
or gates wherever possible. Never do anything that could allow animals to roam where the
farmer did not intend. Ask permission where appropriate.
Take care if parking and do not obstruct roads, lanes and field entrances to access by
farm machinery, which can be large. Exercise your dog in parks or forests but avoid
countryside or open hillside where they may worry sheep.
Report suspicious activity to the police forces, as below.
If your car is broken into in an upland area report it to the PSNI or Gardai as this
will help them be aware of the issue and tackle it in future. Store the numbers. In
Northern Ireland use the PSNI non-emergency number 0845 600 8000. In the Republic you
can find the local Garda District HQs phone numbers at www.garda.ie/Stations/Default.aspx.
Specifically for the hotspot of Wicklow: the Garda Divisional Headquarters in Bray is 01
If you hear of a problem area or route, write it up in MountainViews
which does everyone a service.
Report rubbish tipping in the Republic - ring EPA hotline 1850 365 121
Report recreational quads in national park area (in which they are banned). They are
also banned in the Mournes. For Wicklow please phone the Duty Ranger: 087-9803899 or the
office during office hours Telephone: +353-404-45800. For the Mournes ring the PSNI (as
above) or contact Mournes Heritage Trust. Put these numbers in your phone, take regs
etc. Let MV know of contact numbers for other areas.
If you have visited some of the less well known places, we would appreciate a place
rating and also "Improve Grid Ref" for summits and other places.
If you find errors in the basic information about places such as in their names, their
heights, county name etc please use the "Propose Places Database Change" option.
If we can, let's make MV have more than one route up a summit or to a place so as to
reduce the tendency for paths to appear. Your grid refs in comments for different
starting points show up on MountainViews maps as well as shared GPS tracks.
Visit the MountainViews Facebook page.
Visit the Challenge Walks Ireland page (jointly managed by MountainViews)
Editor: Simon Stewart, Homepage:
Assistant editors: Colin Murphy, David Owens
Summit comment reviews: David Murphy
Challenge Info: Jim Holmes
Track reviews: Peter Walker
Book reviews: Aidan Dillon, Peter Walker, Mel O'Hara
Videography: Peter Walker
Graphics design advice & cartoons: madfrankie
Development & support volunteers: Vanush "Misha" Paturyan, Mike Griffin
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