Cookies. This website uses cookies, which are small text files that the website puts on your computer to facilitate operation. Cookies help us provide a better service to you. They are used to track general user traffic information and to help the website function properly.

Click to hide this notice for 30 days.
Welcome to MountainViews
If you want to use the website often please enrol (quick and free) at top right.

The Summit

MountainViews newsletter for guestuser

Mar 2022

HILLWALKING
NEWS - INFORMATION - RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS - FEATURES - FORUMS



NORTH, SOUTH, WEST, EAST, ENGLAND, Route ideas and places to go.



Mega-fauna Céim na Conaire – A Step along the Way

A Covid Challenge for Old Bones Patrick Casey brings assorted comrades to Ireland's highpoint

Two videos featured this month from gerrym and ToughSoles.

New Arderin Identified Croaghanmoira North Top -- Whys and wherefores. Also some other new measurements.

UPCOMING EVENTS for HILLWALKERS

MOUNTAINVIEWS: Hillwalkers' Events

  • Friday 25th Feb 2022.
    Annual Gathering -- Event now on. The MountainViews Committee has decided to go ahead with the meeting. It will have speakers to be announced and the usual awards ceremony

    Date: Fri 6th May, 2022
    Venue: Lansdowne Hotel, Dublin
    Time: 7:30pm for 8pm start.
    Charge: not decided but last time was €15
    Annuals: will be available for sale
    Speakers: we hope to have a speaker from the Mountain Running community and are arranging others.


    Details will follow in our April and May newsletters.

    One of our Gatherings. We had around 100 people attending the last in 2020.


  • Jan 15th 2022. Report
    Kerry Walking - Visiting Torc The plan was to organise a simple event on Sat Jan 15th on the two Torc Mountains near Killarney. Your editor visited his last Arderin after a couple of other days great hillwalking
    There was a turnout of 30 for the event with people from the MountainViews Community, the Irish Ramblers Club and friends.
    For me as editor, this was a very fitting end to my quest to visit the 405 Arderins. (But wait, that's now 406 .. see later)



 Picture of the month

Winter wonderland at Ridge of Capard, Slieve Blooms.
It isn't so easy to find an interesting view in the the Slieve Blooms - but here's one.
For original summit comment, click here.



Photo: Colin Murphy


 International Pic of the Month

The southern end of the Black Cuillin Hills are marked by Sgurr nan Gillean (964m)
.
For original summit comment, click here.



Photo: Martin Critchley

Regions: MOUNTAIN COMMENTS - TRIP REPORTS - TRACKS - SUMMARIES
In short: Discovery

Featured Track of the Month
Cloudbusting
This month's selection revisits an incredible day experienced by your track reviewer and his friends in the Mournes just before Christmas, where they definitely bought the ticket and won the lottery. A demonstration of how a little bit of knowledge of how the weather works can pay off massively.
Peter Walker on Doan and Slieve Muck from the Banns Road
Main walk Start: 07:48, End: 11:57, Duration: 4h 9m, Length: 15.0km, Ascent: 613m, Descent: 612m
Places: Start at J28461 21427, Doan, Carn Mountain North Top, Carn Mountain, Slieve Muck, end at Start (statistics such as Ascent or Length etc should be regarded as approximate. Duration depends on the speed of the person making the track)

It had been a grey week, and it had climaxed with a grey weekend. It was a Sunday when motivation to arise before 6am was weak, but I had agreed to lead The Team (see Bleck Cra's article from the 2021 MV Annual) on a walk in the Mournes, so I was going regardless of any internal monologues that might have led me elsewhere (or indeed to just have a lie-in). I bigged up the chances of getting above the days-old layer of low cloud that had settled over much of Ireland, and set off for the Banns Road car park.


Out of the clouds



On arrival it was still grey, but quite a dark grey in the early stages of dawn. It wasn't wildly promising, but Nuala, Mick and Gerard were all already there so now we really couldn't bail! So we scuttled along the Banns Road into the gloom and crossed our fingers as much as one can on a gloved cold winter's morning. As the altitude increased so did the light levels, initially illuminating the inside of the cloud, until finally we broke though into blue skies and bright daylight. It had been worth getting out of bed after all.


Climbing Doan from Loughshannagh



The Banns Road eventually deposited us on the shores of Loughshannagh under the ramparts of Doan, the first objective. We crossed some rough, tussocky ground and found a little path snaking up to the summit crags that I'd never noticed before: never underestimate your ability to locate extra detail in an area you'd thought you knew pretty well. This merged with the (nowadays) motorway that comes to Doan from the Ott direction, and a final sharp climb gained the top.


Looking into the Silent Valley from Doan
Oh, crikey. It was a day of razor visibility over the summits, with the low angle of the sun casting crazy shadows across the mountainsides. And the cloud sea below seemed alive, smothering the coast and the sea, sinking and rising into the valleys and over the cols and the summits. We stayed for a while. This was a bit special.


Doan



This was a tough summit to leave, but left it we did. Across the bog (frozen, hurrah) to gain the Mourne Wall under Slieveloughshannagh, then turning left for the plod over Carn to the final summit of Slieve Muck. To our left were cotton wool, sunbeams and Loughshannagh. And if you looked away from the Mournes it was just a monumental layer of fluff, with ridiculously distant high summits nudging through; Sawel and Cuilcagh just as visible as the nearer Slieve Gullion.

It's a sharp drop again from Muck back down to the Banns Road, made slightly spooky by re-entering the clouds on its lower slopes, but it was a Caspar The Friendly Ghost level of spookiness, rather than John Carpenter's The Fog. It was a much cheerier party on the walk down the Road than it had been on the walk up.


The descent from Slieve Muck

I'm slightly dubious about a lot of outdoors writing...99% of my time on the hill is 'nice enough', 'invigorating', 'meh', 'well, it got me out of the house', and all the points in between. Some folk seem to find every trip out an intense orgy of nigh-on impossible pleasure. Even in Wicklow or the Sperrins! Are they being honest? If they are, where the hell do they get the energy?

No, for me it's only about 1% of the time when mountain walking is the best thing in the world, and that's enough. I've been at this game for over 40 years now, and I've seen a fair bit. Enough to know that this was a good day...

Buy a ticket. Win the lottery.





NORTH: Steeple chase
The diminutive Meenavally (also known as the steeple) in Donegal may be seen from member dino’s house, is topped by a climbable stone tower and has great views towards Errigal and Muckish.
group on Meenavally:
A short walk along forest trails to a summit known locally as "The Steeple" and crowned by a small stone tower which can be climbed via a winding stone staircase. This tower dates back to the early 19th Century and was built as an astronomical observatory by Sir Henry Stewart of Tircallen, a former estate and now a local townland. The summit is fairly clear with good views on a clear day towar ... ... Click here ...


NORTH: A small gem
Altnapaste in the Bluestacks offers varied terrain, a decent track most of the way and glorious views of the surrounding mountains, says member dino.
dino on Altnapaste, (Allt na Péiste):
I climbed this hill back at the end of November but for some reason I didn't log it. Altnapaste is a familiar hill having cycled near it numerous times and having looked at it from many different directions but this was my first time on top. When I visited there was no uploaded GPS track but using the waypoints and descriptions from other logs I pretty much followed the path that is now upload ... ... Click here ...


WEST: Projecting light and shadow
An archaeologist joins pdtempan on his exploration of Slieve Deane in the Ox Mts, and cast some light on the mysteries of the areas multiple megalithic burial chambers.
pdtempan on Slieve Daeane, (Sliabh Dá Éan):
I've been a frequent visitor at the Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery for quite a few years now, sometimes bringing tour groups, sometimes visiting on my own account. I've travelled down a couple of times at Halloween for events at the Visitor Centre, in the hope of witnessing the special Halloween sunrise alignment at Listoghil, the central tomb of the complex, though I've yet to see it at its best ... ... Click here ...


WEST: Access issues
Peter1 advises that one potential route up Leenaun Hill – that from the north, is no longer available. A shame, as it’s quite a beautiful and popular climb.
aburden on Leenaun Hill, (An Meall Dubh):
Up the Col of Despondency and turned East to follow hags to high point ( cairn ) in distance ... Click here ...




SOUTH-WEST: Mishunderstanding
A walk into the mountains that has no intention of reaching a summit (although extending up to some would be straightforward), kburke96 has visited the prodigious Slieve Mish range that rises like a wall above the north coast of Dingle. The walk up the Derrymore Glen is well known, but this route goes up the Curraheen, another deep valley carving into the mountainside to its east, similarly climaxing at a lake. Interesting.
kburke96 on Curraheen river walk
From the parking spot at Q809107 (just after the equestrian centre, room for 3-4 cars), join the 'Kerry Camino' | walk, Len: 15.3km, Climb: 589m, Area: Slieve Mish (Ireland) ... Click here ...


WEST: A very rugged hill, distant from everything.
Maumturkmore is a Carn that requires a lengthy hike over sometimes difficult terrain, but is well worth the effort, writes markwallace.
markwallace on Maumturkmore, (Binn Bhán):
Maamturkmore, called Binn Bhán on the Harvey map, is a minor but very rugged and not easy to get to peak that I wanted to add to my climbs in the Maamturks. I had also failed to reach the nearby Maam Turk pass L858 564 on a previous visit so wanted to make the climb via that route. I parked at the point where the Western Way meets the Bun na Croc road around L859 534 and followed the Western Way n ... ... Click here ...


Featured summit comment
Short and Sweet
chelman7

This time the summit-comment-of-the-month incorporates a new award: summit-title-of-the-month. And the award goes to chelman7 for 'Why Do I Obsess about the Hills that Kick My Ass?' This is the title for a post that says so eloquently, in a number of different ways, what we have all endured from time to time on Irish hills - the torture of the trees. On this occasion the trees are on top of Keale Mountain in County Limerick. Here's chelman7's post, with a title that's so good it's worth repeating:


Why do I Obsess about the Hills that Kick My Ass

I tried 4 different ways to reach the top. Finally succeeded (see Track 4608). Not pleasant, but mercifully short. Hill baggers and other nutters only. If you have patience, wait until Coillte log the trees, sometime in the next ten years or so. If you can't wait - bring a good briar beating stick (or a flame-thrower)  



Photo: chelman7, Ridge to Corranbinnia from West of Summit

SOUTH: Three cheers
A trio of short summaries on the fine trio of heathery tops in the Reeks called Beann Dubh, Beann Bhan & Beendarrig from simon3.
group on Beendarrig, (Beann Dhearg):
Beendarrig is a straightforward climb. The Kerry Way passes close to the summit. Follow the 'yellow man' signs from either the Bridia Valley or from near Lough Acoose. There are wonderful views, so it is well worth doing on a fine day, maybe when you haven't time to climb some of the bigger mountains in the area. It is also possible to visit two other Beanns in the area: Beann Bhán and Beann Dub ... ... Click here ...


SOUTH: Tall order
From Cnoc na Banóige it is very clear why Slievenalecka takes its name from the word for steeple, reports simon3.
simon3 on Slievenalecka, (An Starraicín):
From the north slopes of Cnoc na Banóige it is very clear why Slievenalecka or An Stairricin takes its name from the word for steeple. In the background and sunlit is Masatiompan. ... Click here ...


SOUTH: Odd rusting yoke!
You find the strangest things on Irish mountains, like the gigantic rusting metal frame at the top of Musherabeg in the Boggeraghs, whose purpose is a mystery, writes Colin Murphy.
Colin Murphy on Musherabeg, (Muisire Beag):
I can't speak to the hill's qualities as I could barely see my hand before my face in the mist, but one of the striking aspects is the presence of a huge rusting frame of some sort right at the summit. It looks like the skeleton of the roof of a factory building turned on its head, but why it's there and what exactly it is, your guess is as good as mine. ... Click here ...


EAST: The upside of winter
An otherwise so-so top, Knocknaman in the Slieve Blooms was transformed into a wonderland by overnight snow and frost, reports Colin Murphy.
Colin Murphy on Knocknaman:
I approached from the previously mentioned N 1962702722, passing through an unlocked gate (and making the assumption that the 'Authorised Personnel Only' sign was to deter anyone with evil intent!) and followed the forest road all the way to a clearing at N198 035. Just east of this is another smaller clearing, from which a grassy forest ride meanders its way east towards the top, eventually leadi ... ... Click here ...


EAST: Pure bull
Multiple comments on what is probably Ireland’s easiest ‘bag’ –Bull Island in Dublin which rises just 4m. A good place for a dog walk though, write several contributors.
Colin Murphy on Bull Island, (North Bull Island):
At just 4m, this island is probably the easiest 'bag' on the entire island of Ireland. Finding the 'high' point is no easy task, but luckily at least it doesn't appear to be on the golf course. As you approach the island across the Causeway Road, you eventually come to a roundabout, where you'll see a few dunes covered in long beach grass. The highpoint, according to my GPS was on one of these jus ... ... Click here ...


EAST: Ballycumber (and then) some
A nice ramble in the foothills of southern Wicklow courtesy of the first person to complete the Arderins in a calendar year, simoburn. It's a loop from the village of Tinahely over Muskeagh Hill and Ballycumber Hill mainly on signed tracks and lanes, but with a little rougher and wetter ground.
simoburn on Muskeagh Hill & Ballycumber Hill Loop Walk
For this route we parked in Tinahely and followed the R749 out of the village to T02574 72527 where there is a track hea| walk, Len: 16.8km, Climb: 689m, Area: Muskeagh Hill, Wicklow (Ireland) Muskea ... Click here ...


EAST: The other Tara hill
Not the seat of High Kings, but Wexford’s Tara Hill makes for a relatively easy and very interesting walk with sea and landscapes to enjoy, writes wicklore.
wicklore on Tara Hill, (Torrchoill):
Tara Hill presents as a lovely rounded hill standing alone on the south east coast near Gorey. I explored the roads surrounding it and made the mistake of driving along the “other road” marked on the map between the graveyard at Kilcavan and Ballincarrig – this looked like a handy short cut but at times is little more than a dirt track, too narrow even for a car. However I made it and found a lov ... ... Click here ...


EAST: Dan! Dan! Dan!
Scarr to Kanturk is a very popular walk, so any variety that can be injected into it is welcome. BrianKennan has gone over the hills before extending the outing around and above the shores of Lough Dan, with a couple of rivers to cross (relatively easily!) and some interesting abandoned dwellings.
BrianKennan on Lough Dan loop
This walk starts from the Scout Centre at Lough Dan with a 3km hike (1 hr) up to the peak of Scarr.The route follows tra| walk, Len: 19.2km, Climb: 725m, Area: Scarr, Wicklow (Ireland) Scarr, Scarr N ... Click here ...


EAST: Interesting walk helped by boardwalk.
A new short summary on The Ridge of Capard by Colin Murphy, recounts an interesting walk partially assisted by a boardwalk and marked by several cairns.
group on Ridge of Capard:
This is a relatively easy walk assisted in part by a substantial boardwalk. There is a large car park at N364 065. The boardwalk begins here and runs SW for the best part of 1km across an otherwise heather-coated and often muddy landscape. The incline is gentle. The continuous boardwalk ends, but you will find small sections traversing the boggiest areas. The route continues along a muddy track (v ... ... Click here ...


ENGLAND: Permission to Land
Something of a curio from march-fixer and a trip over the water. Most extremities of land acknowledge their extremes in some way, even token (see: Malin and Mizen Heads, Lands End, that sort of thing), but the easternmost point of the UK has never been a popular site based on that distinction, and is marked by little more than a bit of a metal compass plaque thingy. So I wouldn't necessarily make a point of following his footsteps around the faded coastal industry of Lowestoft, but I for one am interested that he went there in the first place.
march-fixer on The most Easterly Point
As part of a short break stay on The Broads in Norfolk we tried a couple of the local tracks. One objective was to walk | walk, Len: 13.1km, Climb: 70m, Area: UK () ... Click here ...


Sorry if we didn't mention what you posted .. there's a list of all contributors for recent month(s) later.

MOTLEY GATHERING


The Annual


The MountainViews Annual 2021 - published in Feb 2022

admin -at- mountainviews.ie
After our appeal for articles in the Jan newsletter, we received some 31 contributions. (This is almost back to the pre-Covid level - in 2020 the figure was 36).
This meant that we were able to construct a magazine with more balance and a wider range of topics.

It also meant that we had to choose 18 articles out of what we received. So if your submission didn't make it, please know that we are likely to include it in future newsletters, starting with this one.

Thanks to everyone that contributed
The MountainViews committee and all of the newsletter team really appreciate the strong support we have got from our members.
Unfortunately as editor I am not able to personally get round to contact everyone. So whether your contribution was or wasn't included, please do accept my thanks!





Volunteering for 2022: 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 load.
Position In Brief
Ordinary members 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.
Publicity MountainViews is a great resource based on over 1400 people's contributions over 19 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 people's contributions.

Contact us at admin -at- mountainviews.ie

A COVID Challenge for Old Bones

(or should that be comic...)

Patrick Casey and enthusiastic novice friends set their sights on Ireland's highest mountain.



Corrán Tuathail from the Hag's Glen (D McCarthy)

Planting the Seed

”If you’re ever going up again, my sisters would love to go. It’s on their bucket list”, as my brother-in-law Dan told me one evening during lockdown in early Spring 2021. Whilst he’d no great wish to go up Corrán Tuathail, he did volunteer to come along. He maintained it would be his first and only mountain walk and his boots (which he had yet to procure) would be on eBay the following morning. As I’d generally climb Corrán Tuathail every year with a group of experienced hill walkers, myself and our GPS/navigation guru Tomás agreed to pencil in the challenge in our calendar. If the group was prepared to undertake a training regime, then ‘we’d get them up there’.

A Growing Family

Inevitably, such challenges grow numbers, as a good story travels fast. Recovering then from a knee operation, I promised my physio Kevin that if he got me back on the hills I’d trek with him to Corrán Tuathail. Another man with a bucket list. My two friends Hilary and Andrew (retired from Iarnród Éireann) also wanted to come along. They said they were ‘good walkers. Now, in hindsight I suspect that the only walking they had done was up and down train carriages. Preparations for the challenge commenced in April. We would take a group of inexperienced hill walkers, with an age profile from 50 to 73 years young, up in late August. Some had never been on any mountain. The question in my mind at an early stage was “Would this prove to be a fool’s journey?” Would it be said that we were the old fools, having the innocent faith to undertake the journey with inexperienced walkers, with its potential hazards and dangers?

Turning Lemons Sweet

So where do you begin, to get such a disparate group to the start line in the Hag’s Glen to undertake the walk? There would be a need to educate them as to what would be required to undertake the climb. It would entail a fitness programme, advice on purchasing walking gear, best food to carry, dealing with variable weather, hydration and map reading. The challenge would likely happen against a background of COVID restrictions and lockdowns.

We prepared a weekly walk programme and practiced enthusiastically for the ‘Big Day’ with training days taking in Mangerton, Slíabh na mBan, Knockmealdown and Keeper Hill. Along the way we lost the women, not on the mountains thankfully, but to injuries from the exacting training pro-gramme. A reduced group of six would later tackle Corrán Tuathail.


Corrán Tuathail from Cnoc na Toinne (T Droney)

The Challenge Unfolds

When the big day arrived in late August it proved to be one of the best days in the year for the mountains. Temperatures in the mid 20’s, little cloud cover with a south westerly breeze, just ideal walking conditions. Gathering early at the tea rooms in Cronin’s Yard, Kevin asked, ”What time will we be back?” The most prescient answer came from our Kerryman Tomás………”Hopefully today”. After an uplifting reading of The Walker’s Prayer, Kevin was ready to head straight for the Heavenly Gates, having confused the location with the more easily reached Devil’s Ladder. However, he was convinced to hold back and try for an easier route via the planned Bóthar na Gíge zig-zags. The first stage of the walk into the Hag’s Glen is along a well-trodden stone pathway and soon you arrive at a landowner’s gate. It’s there the pace for the rest of that day was set down. Andrew wanted a photo of the group to ‘mark the occasion’. It was the start of over 200 photos he took that day. Eventually near the base of the zig-zags and after many photos, the walkers broke into groups. The lead group was looking to drive on towards the summit, with the rear group including Andrew and his alternating minders moving slowly between photo stops.

Not Quite There Yet

Four hours after we set off, all had reached the flat plateau on Cnoc na Toinne. Photos had to be taken and it’s only polite to have a chat with those returning from the summit. Eventually, all six reached the summit, at different times but on the same day and we got the photo to prove it. They all smiled for that photo only because they still have teeth. It was six hours after we set off. Maybe it was simply a worldly penance. Then some would say it’s about the journey and people you meet along the way. As we had stopped to chat with almost everyone, it must have been a great journey.

If the journey to the summit was long, the trek down proved to be every bit as long, except that the day was closing in and we’d have to get the group back to the base of the mountain before sunset. After taking in the views and many photos, we started our descent. I can’t say the descent was un-eventful, because at one stage Hilary was seen clinging tightly to the mountainside along a narrow ledge and muttering something about the 4th message of Fatima and making an offering if he got down safely. He headed for Lourdes not long after. No doubt all in thanksgiving for his safe delivery off the mountain.

Time For Another Photo


Looking into the Hag's Glen from Cnoc na Toinne
On the descent Andrew started falling behind the other walkers again. To get a ‘good photo’ he said. However, the group kept him in view behind, even though some who were near breaking point had suggested leaving him behind. As a saintlier man once said “Oh Lord give me patience and give it to me right now”. We knew Andrew was safe and coming on behind, when the only sound coming out of the Glen was Andrew singing to himself and with apologies to Percy French and his parody on the West Clare Railway:

“Are ye right there Michael are ye right?
And do ye think that I’ll get home before it’s light,
If I take another photo of a sheep, a lake, I’m loco,
Sure, I’ll be left here for the rest of this night”.

With the sheep well settled for the night and the sun down on the Iveragh Peninsula, Andrew finally arrived back in Cronin’s Yard. For some the climb had taken over eleven hours. Whilst many walkers strive to climb Corrán Tuathail in a fast time, I’ve no doubt we had created a record for climbing it in the longest time and it may stand for many moons to come.

Into The Future

As for Dan, well his walking boots have been taken down from eBay and he often tells tall tales of his days and adventures in our Highlands. All that remains is to get the women up Corrán Tuathail in 2022. Seo linn arís a Thomáis.

For the record, the Old Bones that successfully undertook the challenge were Dan McCarthy, Hilary Twomey, Kevin O’ Regan, Tomás Droney, Patrick Casey and not forgetting Andrew Roche. It was said that “old bones are still the best, a bit like old boots and old music”.


For whom the crow...crows (T Droney)

...

-- Patrick Casey

CHALLENGE
A place for those interested in Challenge Walks


"Okay! Everyone back on the Bus!"

...Well, kind of!

After a Covid hiatus of a year or two it would seem that many a green shoot is beginning to sprout!

At time of going to press 2022 sees four Challenge Walks good to go, leaving Covid behind, hopefully.

In a handful of weeks one of the Calendar's iconic Walks takes place!

 

THE MAUMTURKS CHALLENGE

9th April 2022

The Maumturks Challenge Walk is one the strongest tests of endurance in the years calendar. It is for very experienced walkers only.

The walk is organised by the NUIG Mountaineering Club, and takes place each Spring, usually during the month of April. It stretches from the foot of Corcogmore near Maam, all the way to Leenane over the length of the Maumturks.

The route is known for rapidly changing weather and poor visibility so good navigation skills and appropriate equipment are absolutely essential.

All 250 allocated slots have sold out (quicker than Garth Brooks tickets!).

As mentioned - this is one of the toughest Walks and it is worthy of note that over 40% of participants on the last outing a few years ago... failed to finish!

Distance: 25 km. Total Ascent: 2,300m

THE MAUMTURKS CHALLENGE

 

Rolling a little later in the month (ahh I can taste the hot apple pie and custard already!) the

KNOCKMEALDOWNS CROSSING beckons!

Monday 7th March.

23rd April 2022

Organised by the Peaks Mountaineering Club this walk traverses a most beautiful mountain ridge that traces the County boundary of Tipperary and Waterford whilst looking down on "The Vee" and other great vistas. This Walk now enjoys a new route which is slightly shorter than previous Challenges.

April still being April... the weather on this Challenge Walk can be inclement - to say the least!

Online Registration begins

Distance: 29km. Total Ascent: 1,250m

The Knockmealdown Crossing

 

With most of the Summer Challenge Walks not taking place we have to wait till August before we need to awaken in the middle of the night once more!

THE MOURNE SEVEN SEVENS

6th August 2022

A very popular Walk as proudly hosted by Lagan Valley Orienteers.

The Mourne Seven Sevens Walk takes in, amongst others, the seven higher mountains of the Mourne Mountains. A route that consists of summiting Slieve Donard 850m first and then a route that heads towards The Silent Valley before its return to Newcastle. An “unsupported” walk but definitely a nice clean walk which for the most part follows well-worn trails and stone tracks that in places trace the incredible Mourne Wall.

Alas, this Challenge Walk is sold out too!

Distance: 29 km. Total Ascent: 2,495m

Mournes 7X7

THE MOURNE SEVEN SEVENS

 

Then with its August anchor... our good friends down Leinster way await our arrival!

THE FEI SHEEHY CHALLENGE

12th, 13th, 14th August 2022

A mighty Challenge over three days to cross the Galty, Comeragh and Knockmealdown Mountains. Organised in association with Galtee, Nire Valley Bogtrotters and Peaks Hillwalking Clubs - There are three variations of walks over three great mountain ranges! .

Distance (over the three days) : 95 km. Total Ascent: 4,200m.

Registration for 2022 is now closed!

It's no sin but... many a Challenge Walk sells out super-fast! Best way to think of it is that the Irish Challenge Walks fraternity has certainly become victims of its own success!

FEI SHEEHY CHALLENGE

 

So Onwards and Upwards Boys and Girls.

Keep Safe and Enjoy your Day!

Jim Holmes

 

MountainViews Challenge Walks Calendar

Reports of many of the Challenge Walks and indeed news, blogs and more - can be found on . . . CHALLENGE WALKS NEWS, REPORTS, BLOGS & MORE . . . mountainviews.ie/challengenews You should be able to find this link easily off the main Challenge Walks Page.

Another feature that's closely related to Challenge Walking and other services provided by MountainViews is our page listing Irish Compleatists of the Scottish Munros. We could use some recent compleaters reports for this! mountainviews.ie/IrishMunroists
See some more info below on this new feature.

For fuller details: The Challenge Walk Calendar

Also take a look at this resource:
www.facebook.com/ChallengeWalksIreland

Céim na Conaire – A Step along the Way: Mega-fauna!

March – Visualising the Wild Ireland of the Past, along with its Wild Animals


Paul Tempan


Wintertime, when there is a little less going on in nature, seems a good time to reflect on some of the wild animals which once roamed the wilds of Ireland but have become extinct, and also to contemplate what the future may hold in terms of potential for re-wilding. I wished myself Kieran Hickey’s Wolves in Ireland (2013) for my birthday recently and found it a very interesting read. It also opened up the whole topic of animals in history and prehistory for me and inspired me to read further about other species. This article is an attempt to imagine the range of Ireland’s fauna in the past. So, to kick things off, here’s a quiz question for you. Which of the following animals are known to have lived in Ireland at some point in the past, either in historical times or in prehistory: bears; wild boar; beavers; reindeer; elk; wild cats; woolly mammoth; hyenas; lemmings; arctic fox; bison?


Wolves are apex predators, like us (© hehaden)


Wikipedia will tell you that Ireland now has only 27 native species of mammals in the wild (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_mammals_of_Ireland), which is rather less than Britain (43) and far less than continental Europe (219), but surprisingly, there is evidence for all of the aforementioned animals in the past except beavers, elk and bison. Of course, there was the “Irish elk” in prehistory, but this was really a species of deer and is more accurately named the “giant Irish deer”. Since evidence, in the form of preserved bones, tusks, teeth or antlers, is notoriously difficult to find, we should perhaps say “no evidence yet” for beavers, elk and bison, especially as they all existed on the neighbouring island at some stage. Science keeps turning up something new, so the list may grow. 

I thought it would be interesting to do a little armchair time-travelling and think about the fauna of Ireland in three different periods during the lifetime of some important people. First stop: the 16th century.


Gráinne Ní Mháille (Grace O’Malley), c. 1530–1603

Gráinne become leader of the Ó Máille clan whose territory was the barony of Murrisk around Croagh Patrick (/summit/65/). She is remembered for her piratical activities and her feisty encounter with Elizabeth I of England. In Gráinne’s time, Ireland had considerably more bogland, native woodland and wild countryside in general than nowadays. There had been considerable deforestation during the Middle Ages, but this gathered pace with the Plantation of Munster in Gráinne’s later years, and especially with the subsequent Plantation of Ulster in the 17th century. Many bogs were drained and reclaimed for farmland at the same time. Gráinne only lived to see the beginnings of this process. In her time, there was still enough wild country around Croagh Patrick, Mweelrea and the other mountains of South Mayo to support animals like wolves, deer, kites and eagles. The deer would have been the native red deer or the fallow deer introduced by the Anglo-Normans (sika deer were introduced later at Powerscourt in 1860). The species of wolf native to Ireland was the grey wolf, as elsewhere in Europe. Irish people seem to have tolerated wolves, hunting them occasionally and making big efforts to keep them away from livestock. It was only in Cromwell’s time, the 1640s, that the settlers from Britain attempted to exterminate them. Ireland was nicknamed “Wolf-Land” at this time, reflecting the English horror at the presence of this animal which had already been eradicated centuries earlier in their own country. 


Woodland was more the norm
than the exception in early medieval Ireland

Gráinne would probably have seen great auks on the Atlantic coast, for example on Clare Island, where a castle was one of her strongholds, and smaller rocky islands. These birds, which resembled penguins and, like them, were flightless, were related to puffins, guillemots and razorbills. Because of their inability to fly, they were easily caught and were hunted to extinction in the 19th century, the last Irish sighting being off Brownstown Head in Co. Waterford in 1834. Gráinne would also have encountered white-tailed eagles as she navigated along the coast. These became extinct not long afterwards but have been successfully re-introduced to the west coast in the recent years. Crane Island, on the eastern shore of Lough Mask in Mayo, could well have been a true island at this time and provided a suitably marshy habitat for the birds which give the place its name. Bitterns also tended to nest in wetland habitats. Of course, there was a much greater range of animals than I have mentioned here, but I am focussing on some of the larger species which became extinct after Gráinne’s lifetime.


A flock of cranes in flight, once a familiar sight over Irish wetlands (© Artur Rydzewski)

Coemgen or Caoimhín (St. Kevin of Glendalough), 6th century

Caoimhín lived at a time when Ireland had no cities and was completely rural. There are numerous stories told about the saint, who clearly had a strong connection to nature. Perhaps the best-known concerns the blackbird which laid an egg on Caoimhín’s outstretched hand while he prayed, but there are several others involving animals. The Deer Stone is a landmark at Glendalough, Co. Wicklow, where Caoimhín founded a monastery in the 6th century. According to local tradition, the wife of one of Caoimhín’s workers died giving birth to twins, who were left without milk to feed them. The workman, named Colmán, came to ask for help from Caoimhín, who then prayed to God. This prayer was answered when a doe came to this stone and left her milk in the hollow of the stone. The doe (which must have been a red deer) returned regularly each morning to feed the twins. https://pilgrimagemedievalireland.com/2013/06/03/the-deer-stone-a-19th-century-pilgrim-station-at-glendalough/ In one version of the story, the doe eventually stopped coming, but Caoimhín prayed again and she was replaced by a she-wolf, who also gave milk for the children. Another tale recounts how Caoimhín dropped his prayer book in the lake, but an otter appeared from the depths with the book in its mouth and returned it completely undamaged. Whether you take these miraculous tales at face value or not is a matter of personal choice or faith, but they can be taken as a reliable indicator that red deer, wolves and otters were reasonably common in Co. Wicklow in the early Middle Ages. This squares with the information given in the 7th century by the Irish monk Augustine (not the better-known saint) who mentions 9 mammals that were present in Ireland: wolf, red deer, wild boar, fox, badger, hare, squirrel, otter and seal.

Gráinne would probably have seen great auks on the Atlantic coast, for example on Clare Island, where a castle was one of her strongholds, and smaller rocky islands. These birds, which resembled penguins and, like them, were flightless, were related to puffins, guillemots and razorbills. Because of their inability to fly, they were easily caught and were hunted to extinction in the 19th century, the last Irish sighting being off Brownstown Head in Co. Waterford in 1834. Gráinne would also have encountered white-tailed eagles as she navigated along the coast. These became extinct not long afterwards but have been successfully re-introduced to the west coast in the recent years. Crane Island, on the eastern shore of Lough Mask in Mayo, could well have been a true island at this time and provided a suitably marshy habitat for the birds which give the place its name. Bitterns also tended to nest in wetland habitats. Of course, there was a much greater range of animals than I have mentioned here, but I am focussing on some of the larger species which became extinct after Gráinne’s lifetime.


A herd of sika deer on Tonelagee, Co. Wicklow (© Rob Hurson)

Caoimhín and his monks would probably also have been familiar with cranes which were sometimes kept as pets in medieval Ireland. Colmcille (St. Columba), a contemporary of Caoimhín, is said to have had a pet crane. They would also have encountered wild cats and pigs in the forest around the monastery. Ireland may have had the European lynx (Lynx lynx) and/or the European wildcat (Felis silvestris) at this time. As for the boar, the legend of Diarmuid meeting his death from a charging boar at the foot of Benbulbin while hunting with Fionn mac Cumhaill is well-known, and we have the historical reference from Augustine. Likewise, the Irish word torc meaning ‘wild boar’ appears in a number of place-names, but there is not much fossil evidence for the animal’s existence in the Middle Ages, so it is possible that it died out quite early and that the place-names are based on folklore or refer some other kind of wild pig. True wild boar (Sus scrofa) definitely lived here in prehistoric times. 


Wild boar – put paid to Diarmuid, but when did
he go extinct? (© Makro Freak)

Beavers are another animal that one might expect to have thrived in medieval Ireland. Given that the landscape was dominated by forest and wetland, you might think it was beaver heaven. However, historical references to beavers seem to be completely lacking and there is no trace of them in place-names either. After the Ice Age some species simply did not make it to Ireland in time before the land-bridge connections to Britain and to the continent became submerged by rising sea-levels. This seems to account for the absence of moles in Ireland. Perhaps beavers ‘missed the boat’ too.

Incidentally, almost all the animals which have been mentioned up to this point can still be found somewhere in Europe, with the exception of great auk (extinct world-wide in the 19th century), giant Irish deer and mammoth (extinct in prehistory). Poland, for example, has most of the other species, as well as the last remaining stock of native European bison, which are being used as the basis for re-introduction programmes elsewhere, including Britain.

Cave-dwellers at Castlepook Cave, c. 31,000 BC

Our next jump back in time is a much bigger one, to a time in the depths of the Ice Age, and I’m imagining the fauna encountered by a group of people rather than a single historical figure. Castlepook Cave is on the southern slopes of the Ballyhoura Mountains, not far from the village of Doneraile in Co. Cork. The nearest peak on MV is Seefin Mountain East Top. Between 1904 and 1912 a team led by the naturalist Richard Ussher excavated the cave and recovered bones of a wide range of animals:


Bright but chilly weather, as seen here on Mullaghcarbatagh,
Co. Tyrone, was perhaps the best that Ice Age cave-dwellers
could hope for. Much of Ireland was covered by glaciers.
(© Simon Stewart)


spotted hyenas, giant Irish deer, wolf, brown bear, arctic fox, Irish stoat, arctic lemming, woolly mammoth and reindeer. The landscape was probably like Arctic tundra when these animals lived in the Ice Age. The bones were brought to the National Museum in Dublin, but at that stage there was no proof that any of the animals had been hunted by humans. Dr Ruth Carden of UCD has been analysing bones from Irish limestone caves for several years. Last year, in 2021, she sent a fragment of reindeer bone from Ussher’s collection to the lab for analysis and dating. It bore deep chopping marks which suggested it had been butchered. The results confirmed this and gave a date 33,000 years ago, making it far and away the earliest evidence for human activity in Ireland. The previous earliest evidence came from a butchered bear bone found in a Co. Clare cave, dated as 12,500 years old. The reindeer were probably similar to those still herded by Sami people in Lapland today. However, the domestication of reindeer seems to have happened only 2-3,000 years ago, so the Castlepook cave-dwellers probably hunted wild reindeer.


Reindeer are intimately linked to the origins of
Man in Ireland (© Gregoire Dubois)

This exciting discovery means that, for the first time, Ireland is confirmed to have been inhabited by man in the Palaeolithic era: https://www.thejournal.ie/reindeer-bone-cork-cave-5413607-Apr2021/ We do not know yet whether these people and their descendants were driven south by the ice, whether they died out in the harsh conditions, or whether they survived. Although the other animal bones may date to different periods from the butchered reindeer bone, this find also opens up the possibility that humans saw and hunted the whole range of animals whose remains were found in the cave. Most of these would also have been potential prey for the wolves, which would have been well capable of bringing down a giant deer or even a mammoth by attacking as a pack, although they would have only picked a fight with hyenas or bears as a last resort. This shows that wolves are our closest competitors in nature and almost on an equal footing with us, as we are apex predators, capable of hunting the same prey. No wonder, then, that we chose to co-opt wolves into our society and domesticated them as dogs. 

Giant Irish deer

Another species that I find fascinating is the giant Irish deer or Megaloceros giganteus. This animal was the heaviest known cervid (deer-type animal) and also one of the tallest but it became extinct in Ireland around 10,500 years ago. It typically weighed 450-600 kg, and could sometimes reach a maximum of 700 kg. It stood 2.1m tall at the shoulders, so a male with fully developed antlers would have measured close to 3m with its head raised. The antlers could have a span up to 3.65m and weigh up to 40 kg. This documentary will tell you a lot more about giant Irish deer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bdXiPTv16yE 

The creature is sometimes called the Irish elk but is neither an elk nor specifically Irish. It was probably due to its impressive size that it was compared with the European elk but it is now believed that its nearest living relative is the fallow deer, which has similar teeth and palmate antlers. It was referred to as “Irish” because many of the earliest specimens of antlers and skeletons were found in Irish bogs, often by farming people cutting turf. It was present in much of Northern Europe during the Ice Age, but wet conditions in Ireland and the lack of oxygen in peat have favoured their preservation here. Remains of more than 100 individual giant Irish deer have been found in Ballybetagh Bog in the Dublin Mountains, not far from Glencullen. You might pass this area when approaching Two Rock Mountain from the SE. In 1953 a set of giant deer antlers were found on the shores of Lough Beg at Creagh near Toomebridge, Co. Derry. The find led to the naming of a local inn “The Elk”. The antlers are still on display in the foyer of the Elk Complex. More recently in 2018, a skull and complete set of antlers were fished out of Lough Neagh by fishermen who found them tangled in their nets: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=umV3YG4GWLQ


Giant Irish deer – this sculpture gives an idea of the bulk of the beast (© Loz Pycock)

Looking beyond Ireland, early humans in various parts of Eurasia lived in an environment where giant Irish deer were one of the species of animals that roamed free. Both Neanderthals and Homo sapiens would have seen them and almost certainly hunted them, since a number of giant deer bones have been found in various locations that show signs of butchering. Humans also made use of antlers which they found lying on the ground after the animal had shed them in winter, turning them into tools or ornaments. Perhaps the most dramatic evidence of interaction between humans and giant Irish deer is from cave paintings, such as those at Lascaux in the Dordogne region of France, believed to have been created around 17,000 years ago over several generations. The images are so detailed and accurate that the particular species can be recognised in many cases. Images 2 and 6 in this slideshow feature paintings of giant deer: https://www.futura-sciences.com/sciences/photos/sciences-grand-site-archeologique-decouverte-lascaux-2090/grotte-lascaux-megaloceros-lascaux-15376/

Logainmneacha / Place-Names

Coiscéim an Mhadra Alla, ‘footstep of the wolf’ (Wolfstep), is a foot pass on the Dingle Peninsula, Co. Kerry, that connects Anascaul with Stradbally. It passes between Binn os Gaoith/Beenoskee and Cnoc Mhaoilionáin/Knockmulanane and reaches a height of 360m.

The Wolf’s Hill is a minor peak in Davagh Forest, Co. Tyrone, a little N of Oughtmore. It is possible that this is quite a late name given to a place where wolves were still found before their extermination in the 18th century (see wicklore’s piece re Wolftrap Mountain). Bounties were offered in the 17th century by Cromwell’s government for every wolf killed. In Tyrone wolves were regarded as a great menace and even attacked sheep penned inside stone enclosures in the 1690s. A certain Rory Carragh, a well-known professional hunter, was offered a larger than usual reward to kill two wolves that had escaped extermination, which he duly did with the help of a little boy.

Lough Iskanamacteery on the Iveragh Peninsula, Co. Kerry, has a name meaning ‘lake of the ravine of the wolves’. The ravine in question, Eisc na Mac Tíre, descends steeply to the N from An Bheann Mhór to the lough.

Tirkslieve is a 401m peak in the Nephin Beg Range, Co. Mayo. The name comes from Ir. Toircshliabh, ‘boar-mountain’.

In the same part of Co. Mayo, Glendahurk is a glen and townland on the SE side of Coire na Binne/Corranabinnia, leading down to Clew Bay. The name is from Ir. Gleann dá Thorc, ‘glen of the two boars’. 

Cnoc an Iolair/Cluidaniller is at 227m the highest peak on the island of Árainn Mhór/Arranmore, Co. Donegal. The Irish form Cnoc an Iolair means ‘hill of the eagle’. The anglicised name Cluidaniller points to an alternative form of the name, Clúid an Iolair, 'the eagle's nook'. 

Carrignagat is a rock on the northern slopes of Benyvoughela Hill near Kilfinnane, Co. Limerick. The nearest peak listed in MV is Keale Mountain, which is a little further SE. The name is easily understood as originating from Ir. Carraig na gCat, ‘rock of the cats’, but the difficulty is determining exactly what kind of cat is meant. Surely wild cats of some kind, but are we dealing with lynx, some Irish relative of the European wildcat (still found in Scotland), or just domestic pussycats gone feral? It is believed that Ireland had the European lynx, though it is uncertain when it became extinct. The archaeological evidence is very meagre as very few bones have been found. The same name is also found in Cos Sligo (twice), Roscommon, Cork, and Cavan.


Eurasian lynx – the cat in Carraig na gCat?
(© Jon Glittenberg)

Crane Island is a townland on the E. shore of Lough Mask near Ballinrobe, Co. Mayo. The English name is a translation of Irish Oileán na gCorr. The same name also occurs in the counties of Leitrim, Cavan, Monaghan and Clare. Cranes were common in Ireland in the Middle Ages and were even kept as pets. The common crane is still found in Poland, Ukraine, Scandinavia and Russia. They are social birds and fly long distances together. It’s quite a sight to see them flying in a formation known as a ‘key’: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktB6aDh9a3o

Curraghbonaun, Co. Sligo, is a townland on the plains near Curry to the E. of the Ox Mountains. The name is from Currach Bhunáin, meaning ‘marsh of the bittern’. The great bittern (Botaurus stellaris) was common in Ireland until the mid-19th century. It is still found in Britain, France and many countries in Europe. 

Place-name information is from www.logainm.ie and from www.mountainviews.ie

Photos by Paul Tempan unless stated

Some photos licensed from Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license,
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/", Creative Commons, and Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic licence.

 

-- Paul Tempan

The MountainViews ANNUAL 2021, brought out in 2022.


For 2022 the Annual has 64 pages in 18 Articles about walking on hills, mountains, coast and islands here and abroad.

The ANNUAL (Please save and read in a PDF viewer.) (Hi-res version.)

(Obtain PRINTED VERSION) Mail the MV Secretary for printed copies.
OR
(Obtain PRINTED VERSION - Euro 16.00 + p&p (further €11)

emVee-Tube

Videos this month:

MV user (and video award winner!) gerrym camps on the Donegal coast
Carl and Ellie of Tough Soles have a Narnian stroll from their doorstep

Videography by Peter Walker.

SUMMITEERS and PLACE-VISITORS CORNER
A place for those interested in Summiteering, Bagging, Highpointing, visiting islands and coastal places.



MountainViews Surveying and Changes to Lists


Jan-Feb 2022
MV Place Index Area Placename Easting Northing Height
219 Wicklow-Cen: Glendalough South Lugduff SE Top 308069.70 194926.04 638.02
1513 Wicklow-NE: Bray & Kilmacanogue Downs Hill Top 325307.52 210114.67 372.88
1433 Wicklow-NE: Fancy Scarr NW, Average Measurement 312584.17 202509.67 559.83
0 Wicklow-NE: Fancy Col, Scarr to Scarr NW 312681.17 202296.09 548.77
0 Wicklow-NE: Fancy Col, Kanturk to Scarr NW, Average Measurement 312529.04 202952.67 500.84
1469 Wicklow-NE: Fancy Kanturk Top, Average Measurement 312546.01 203336.61 527.43
286 Wicklow-NE: Fancy Fancy 315004.18 207402.30 593.35
386 Wicklow-NE: Fancy Knocknacloghogue 314353.42 205439.20 532.39
0 Wicklow-S: Croaghanmoira Col Croaghanmoira to Corrigsleggaun 308735.94 187611.73 453.61
0 Wicklow-S: Croaghanmoira Col Croughanmoira N to Croaghanmoira 309507.10 187032.63 545.04
1415 Wicklow-S: Croaghanmoira Croughanmoira N Top, Average Measurement 309452.28 187379.26 579.47
168 Wicklow-S: Croaghanmoira Croaghanmoira Top 309921.18 186502.83 662.33
0 Wicklow-S: Croaghanmoira Col Croaghanmoira to Ballinacor 311045.33 186973.87 481.13
393 Wicklow-S: Croaghanmoira Ballinacor Top 311707.70 186484.01 529.27

Effect on lists and Summiteers Hall of Records from measurements:
Croaghanmoira North Top becomes an Arderin because it has a prominence of 34.4m

Arderin Changes and the whys and hows.

with some assorted information on map accuracy.
  • Simon Stewart

From time-to-time new measurements take place of the height etc of summits.  The list of the Arderins and other topographically defined lists can change.  For example, for Arderins, we find that on surveying that a given summit may not be over 500m or may not have 30m prominence.  Or the reverse: we find a summit does have the needful.

There’s been various changes recently, including one “new” Arderin.  More on that later. 


Background

When the website was first started in 2002, we put together lists from various sources such as Joss Lynam’s 600m list and 500m to 600m summits from Michael Dewey and Myrddyn Philips.  These had height information as available from OS sources. Prominence information was gleaned from looking at maps.  While this was a great initial attempt it meant that a lot of the data was an estimate from looking at contour lines.  By 2009 MV volunteers had finally checked all the heights and prominences from maps as best we could.  We defined lists such as the Arderins, Vandeleur-Lynams, Carns, Binnions etc.

From 2012 two members brought professional differential GPS surveying equipment to bear.  These devices are capable of measuring to within 10cm of height and by doing surveys we have corrected heights and prominences as best we can within our resources.


What needs checking

For Arderins, if the older map-based information says that a summit is near to the minimum height or near to the minimum prominence then we need to check.  This can work either way so for example in 2021 we checked Cahernageeha in the Dunkerrons.  The OS said that the height of this was 499m.  Could it in reality be over 500?  On measurement it turned out to be 498.7m.  Doing this many times shows that the OS, is usually but not always correct where they have a spot height. We also have to remember that they are rounding the figures to the nearest metre. 

However, when the figures are summiteers estimates based on contours be it of summits or cols then the precision isn’t so great. 


OSi 1:50k map of Croaghanmoira area.

Croaghanmoira North Top was one such where there were no spot heights.

On the OS what we are calling Croaghanmoira North Top is the flattish summit to the north of Croaghanmoira Mountain in Wicklow. 

 

East-West 1:25k map of Croaghanmoira area.

We were also curious to see what East-West says.  On previous measurements of summits, MV has established different heights from that on E-W so we maintain a level of skepticism.  For example, for Djouce. The OSI said 725m  and I was told that East-West said 733.  MV went and measured it and got a figure of 725.5m with an accuracy of +- .1   


Returning to Croaghanmoira and its north top.

 

 

It had been assessed using the OSI figures.  We have also included the figures from East-West:

 

Estimated from OS

From East-West

From differential GPS

Height

575

580, spot height

579.5

Key col

548

543

545.0

Prominence

27

37

34.5

 

The accurate spot heights for the top or col would not be inconsistent with either the OSI or E-W mapping, however the E-W contours, in my opinion, give a better representation of the land and when used to try to derive the height of Croaghanmoira or its key col would give more accurate figures.  So, this means that all East-West heights and contours should now be accepted as more accurate? Steady on there.  This is just one instance.


For the record, the key col position for Croaghanmoira N was assessed on the ground as being at T09507 87032, however while the spot height horizontal position measurement is accurate to 10cm, the choice of place to measure is notoriously difficult to find on boggy cols and probably has no greater accuracy than around 20m horizontally on such an ill defined col.  However even if we didn’t quite find the exact place, there is absolutely no way that the right col position would change the height of the col to invalidate Croaghanmoire N as an Arderin.   The position we have  would be not be inconsistent to what could be inferred from the E-W map with its 5m contours or the OSI with its 10m contours.


Also for the record, I am greatly indebted to Tom Condon, (MV member march-fixer) who assisted greatly with these measurements. His help in preventing the Trimble GPS from simply blowing away on the top of Croaghanmoira was just but one example!

The result

The result therefore is that Croaghanmoira North Top is an Arderin, making the total on the island of Ireland to be 406.

Two other adjustments have taken place in the recent past, both reducing the number of Arderins: 

Common Mountain in Donegal SW was found to have a height of 499.7m, down from 501, and less than the required 500m so it was relegated from the Arderins to the Carns.

Carnanelly West in the Sperrins was found to have a prominence of 24.2 m, less than the required 30 so it was relegated from Arderins to Arderin Beg status.

Thus in the last couple of years, the number of Arderins started at 407, went to 406 and then 405 and is now 406.

Note that many other measurements taken such as those on Carnanageehy mentioned before and Brockagh, Co Wicklow confirmed its Arderin status (or non-status)  as have a number of others.


Further adjustments.

Checking through all of the summits that MountainViews as of 2022, revealed that around 36 are candidates for checking.  Therefore, it is effectively certain that the number of Arderins (and numbers on other lists) will change again. My guesstimate is that the number of Arderins won't fall below 400.


List Completers.

Where someone has visited all of the summits in a given list at the time that the reached the last of them, then they are deemed by MV to be a list completer and we will give out an award.

If a subsequent survey changes the list, then they may show on the  Summiteers Hall of Records as not having visited all the summits, where MountainViews has found a new one.


State of play for Arderins visiting as of 3 March 2022.

Summiteers Arderin Ranking, prior to addition of Croaghanmoira N.

 

So, if you have logged visiting all the Arderins by the date we uploaded the fresh information (In this case 4th March 2022)  then you are entitled to claim that you have completed the Arderins.  If, however you haven’t logged climbing them all and are missing Croaghanmoira N, you will have to go and visit it.  An easy summit near the road in this case but it could well be harder elsewhere.


It turns out that all but one of the members who have logged climbing the Arderins have in fact logged Croaghanmoira North.   This isn’t surprising since for most summiteers the new Arderin would be enroute to the main Croaghanmoira.


If you want to assist with any of this, let us know at admin@mountainviews.ie




A Guide to Ireland's Mountain Summits - The Vandeleur-Lynams & The Arderins
The first reprint with numerous minor amendments is available.

Purchase from here.

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 ...

SITE NEWS

Reports of MountainViews.ie not working: certificate out of date -- Repeat Item

A user has reported that they were not able to access MountainViews.ie It turned out that there is a general cause, explained here:

it.slashdot.org/story/21/10/02/2318202/millions-experience-browser-problems-after-long-anticipated-expiration-of-lets-encrypt-certificate?utm_source=rss1.0mainlinkanon&utm_medium=feed

Our volunteer Misha who looks after various technical matters for MV says:

I hope it won't be an issue with other users, or at least with a very limited number of other users. The only advice we can give is to keep OSes and browsers up-to-date: for example, in the notified case the OS he's using has not been updated since 2017.

So update your operating system if you can.

This month.
Kudos to our contributors.

We welcome the following new members who enrolled recently 196xim, Aislingnic, akhook, AlanReid, Alastair, alrob, Ancorcaioch1, Aneta.jablonska, Anna56, archmeister, Beba, BlueCrystal, Borjit-, BredaHorgan, Breslin1945, caoimheorla, CatherineC, Cavehill71, CBoggan_91, cianryan79, cjxfh, ClodaghB, conorjack789, Conor_Obrien, CraigRoche, creeganp, crkmkhea, danoconnor010, Darcy, david2121, dcareyirl, ddineen, Deekells, descarroll, Dusty-Heather, DustyHeather, Egrogan1, eugenejj, felixsproll, fitzgl, GeorginaG, Ger7, ghdsophie, giboyle, gidepa, Greenemary, Hurrikane13, Hyperstorm, Ianhhill, iankilroy, Ironsheep101, jacquie66, Jana, jashark1, jashark2, jb_wilson, Jenno, Jfk252, jimbo47, JimG, jnolan, John89, JohnRea, JwMg, Katlynch7000, kerryanncam, Kogr, LarFant, liamco, louiseoflynnj, Margav, Marian_Timmons, Massey, mattjspencer, Mex, mgerrity, micdug, mickR, Milly, Milsey1, MisterMoe, Mootz, Neil_floody, Nicola88, Nikiforia, Obas, Ohaonusa, ottimo_massimo, PaulFarren, PaulFlaherty, Paul_Larkin, peter_m66, Pikachu, Prte.dublin, RayE, RedmenForever, Ricewalker, richie1950, Roeshanx, Rolka, ronanaoreilly, Roryboy, Rosaleen, safoley, seaniemull, Shinny, Sienna, Simonoconnor, StaCla, Stjb100, tacourette, Taisce, tiger25, Tommytogha, tonio22, Udzungwa, vadinoj, vy6818, walkingireland, Wall2022, Wero, Yana (122)

(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: 196xim (1), B.G. (1), BrianKennan (2), Bunsen7 (1), Colin Murphy (20), Deise-Man (1), Djouce (1), GSheehy (1), Hyperstorm (1), IainT (1), JohnFinn (2), Onzy (8), Pepe (1), Peter Walker (2), SpiritOf84 (1), Trailtrekker (1), aburden (1), arthurdoylephoto (1), brenno (1), ceadeile (1), chelman7 (2), dino (2), eamonoc (4), gerrym (2), Communal summary entries (23), march-fixer (17), markwallace (1), maurice12 (2), mcrtchly (1), mrfleetfoot (1), nickywood (2), pdtempan (7), peter1 (1), pplsgod (1), simoburn (5), simon3 (12), srr45 (2), vycanismajoris (1), wicklore (1)
For a fuller list view Community | Recent Contributors

There were comments on the following places Altnapaste, An Cnapán Mór, An Earagail, An Mhucais, An Starraicín, Ballyteige, Barr an Ghéaráin, Baunreaghcong, Ben Crom, Binn Bhán, Bull Island, Camlough Mountain, Carrickashane Mountain, Carrignagunneen, Cnoc an Stualaire, Collon Hill, Corcóg, Crohan West, Cullaun, Cumber Hill, Dromavally Mountain, Fananierin, Faranaree Hill, Gibbet Hill, Glenaneagh, Gowlbeg Mountain, Great Sugar Loaf, Keale Mountain, Knockalough, Knockbane, Knockeenatoung, Knocknaman, Leenaun Hill, Lugduff, Macha na gCab, Meenavally, Mullacor, Mullaghcarbatagh, Musherabeg, Naweeloge Top, Purple Mountain, Ridge of Capard, Ring Hill, Slieve Daeane, Slieve Felim, Slieve Felim East Top, Slieve Felim South Top, Struicín, Stumpa Dúloigh, Tara Hill, Tievecrom, Tinoran Hill, Torc Mountain, Tountinna
and these shared tracks Ballinafunshoge, Wicklow Ireland, Barnavave, Cooley Mountains Ireland, Barranisky, Wicklow Ireland, Blackstairs Mountain, Blackstairs Mountains Ireland, Cahore Point, Wexford Coast Ireland, Camaderry South East Top, Wicklow Ireland, Carrignagunneen, Wicklow Ireland, Carrigshouk, Wicklow Ireland, Croaghanmoira North Top, Wicklow Ireland, Drumnalifferny Far NE Top, Derryveagh Mountains Ireland, Fair Mountain, Wicklow Ireland, Kanturk, Wicklow Ireland, Keale Mountain, Ballyhoura Mountains Ireland, Lakeen, Wicklow Ireland, Maol na nDamh, Donegal Central Ireland, Mourne Mountains Ireland, Muskeagh Hill, Wicklow Ireland, Prince William's Seat, Dublin Ireland, Robber's Pass Hill, Wicklow Ireland, Robber's Pass Hill, Wicklow Ireland, Robber's Pass Hill, Wicklow Ireland, Scarr, Wicklow Ireland, Slieve Binnian North Tor, Mourne Mountains Ireland, Slieve Meelmore, Mourne Mountains Ireland, Slievenamon, South East Midlands Ireland, Slieveroe, Wicklow Ireland, South East Midlands Ireland, Spain , UK , UK , War Hill, Wicklow Ireland, Wicklow Ireland, Wicklow Ireland, Wicklow Ireland tracks were created.

Thanks to all 1449 who have ever contributed place or routes info and forums.

For a full list view Community | Contributors Hall of Fame

Summary. MountainViews now has 9813 comments about 1671 different hills, mountains, island and coastal features out of the total in our current full list (2204 on island of Ireland). 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 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.

NOTICES

Notices
  • 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 6665300.
  • 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.
  • MV Facebook page. Visit the MountainViews Facebook page.
  • ChallengeWalksIreland Visit the Challenge Walks Ireland page (jointly managed by MountainViews)

This newsletter

This newsletter Editor: Simon Stewart, Homepage: www.simonstewart.ie
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
USING MATERIAL FROM THIS NEWSLETTER. Other websites can link to MountainViews newsletters at /newsletter
For clubs, individual users, non-commercial users some specified items in this newsletter (principally, graphics, quizzes etc) are explicitly shown as Licensed for reuse using this licence: CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 Display link to MountainViews.ie as part of your attribution.
Commercial users for individual items: please contact us.
NEWSLETTER ARCHIVE. View previous newsletters mountainviews.ie/newsletter/
View newsletter, quarterly and annuals index mountainviews.ie/newsletter/index/
RETURNING TO MOUNTAINVIEWS
(If you have cookies on in your browser then you may be prompted as to username/ password. If you forget the password, the login page can email you a replacement.)
DONATING TO MOUNTAINVIEWS
Please help with running costs.
CHANGING EMAIL ADDRESS Member, PLEASE make your own changes using the Settings feature, top right of the page.
Only, if you can't get this to work let us know by email at admin -at- mountainviews.ie Include the email address you got this at or your screen-name guestuser.
UNSUBSCRIBING

Alternatively let us know by email at admin -at- mountainviews.ie Include the email address you got this at or your screen-name guestuser.