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Mweelrea Area   W: Mweelrea Subarea
Place count in area: 12, OSI/LPS Maps: 37, MSW 
Highest place:
Mweelrea, 814m
Maximum height for area: 814 metres,     Maximum prominence for area: 779 metres,

Note: this list of places includes island features such as summits, but not islands as such.
Rating graphic.
Mweelrea Mountain Maol Réidh A name in Irish (Ir. Cnoc Maol Réidh [GE], 'bald hill with the smooth top') County Highpoint of Mayo in Connacht Province, in County Highpoint, Arderin, Vandeleur-Lynam, Irish Best Hundred, Irish Highest Hundred Lists, Sandstone & conglomerate, ignimbrite Bedrock

Height: 814m OS 1:50k Mapsheet: 37 Grid Reference: L78983 66810
Place visited by 888 members. Recently by: Copper58, joreidy, elizauna, JohnFinn, chelman7, ryanguinness10, adgrenna, Ianhhill, mh400nt, Beti13, tryfan, Smort, pcoleman, Eiremattc, mdehantschutter
I have visited this place: NO (You need to be a logged-in member to change this.)

Longitude: -9.830313, Latitude: 53.637241 , Easting: 78983, Northing: 266810 Prominence: 779m,  Isolation: 1.5km
ITM: 478962 766828,   GPS IDs, 6 char: Mwlr, 10 char: Mweelrea
Bedrock type: Sandstone & conglomerate, ignimbrite, (Mweelrea Formation)

Mweelrea is the highest mountain in Connacht. The use of the adjective réidh, ‘smooth’, does not have many parallels in Irish hill-names and seems rather unsuited to rugged Mweelrea. Whilst impossible to prove, it seems plausible that this was once a Brittonic name containing bre, comparable to Welsh moelfre ‘bald hill’, of which there are at least seven instances in Wales. A number of townlands in Co. Down called Drummiller or Miller Hill could well have the same origin, the addition of tautological Ir. droim or Eng. hill being a later development.   Mweelrea is the highest mountain in the Mweelrea area and the 35th highest in Ireland. Mweelrea is the highest point in county Mayo.

COMMENTS for Mweelrea (Maol Réidh) << Prev page 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 .. 9 Next page >>  
Follow this place's comments Picture about mountain Mweelrea (<i>Maol Réidh</i>) in area Mweelrea, Ireland
Picture: Lough Bellawaum from col between Ben Bury and Mweelrea
A giant among mountains
by kernowclimber  20 Sep 2010
Six months ago the sight of Mweelrea, monstrous and glowering in icy majesty beneath leaden skies, was both intimidating and exhilarating, the sight seared into my memory after we made the agonising choice ‘to leave it for another time’ as the light was fading and we turned towards the Lugmore Ridge.

Here we were attempting Mweelrea again. There is no easy way to get to her, you have to be prepared to walk long and climb hard to attain the highest summit of Co. Mayo which makes this mountain somewhat special. We parked on the Dhulough Pass Road (L82845 69526 starA) and walked across the narrow neck of land separating Doo Lough and Glencullin Lough, heading for the corrie below the jagged cliffs of Lugmore. The terrain was boggy, particularly as we approached the lip of the corrie. Keeping to the far left we avoided as much of the bog as possible to access the start of a series of grassy ledges at the back of the corrie (L81582 67622 starB) that undulate upwards in a lung bursting climb to a col between Ben Bury and Ben Lugmore West Top.

The terrain is fiendish, very steep in places and a stony path only becomes evident near the top, but this is compensated for by magnificent views of the loughs in the valley below and the serpentine coils of the Sruhauncullinmore River meandering amid the bog in the corrie. Close to the top the path narrows and weaves precariously along the side of the cliffs with a steep drop; it’s not difficult to see why some might find the exposure intimidating, but a rope is unnecessary.

Reaching the col one is rewarded with scenery on an epic scale – the razor sharp edge of Lugmore Ridge sweeping down towards Lough Bellawaum and ahead, the enormous hulk of Mweelrea sitting imperiously above Killary Harbour and the Atlantic. The remainder of the climb to Mweelrea is easy after the ordeal of the corrie, passing over fairly benign terrain and by some interesting glacial erratics. At the summit, our eyes feasted on the beauty of small green fields flanked by yellow ribbons of sand and the endless Atlantic with myriad islands floating just offshore. The view extended as far north as Achill, the towering cliffs and cone of Croaghaun clearly visible and to the south, the edge of Roundstone Bog, the pools within glinting angrily like thousands of shards of glass. Inland, the Maumturks and the Twelve Bens huddled together like advancing armies.

After an hour savouring some of the finest scenery in Ireland, we followed the same route back. Plunged into shadow, the gaping corrie looked menacing and intimidating and the Dhulough Pass Road a long way down; care must be exercised on the steep descent. Doo Lough, burnished with the reflection of the Sheeffry Hills set ablaze by the setting sun provided a welcome beacon. As we crossed Hut Island we spied the moon rising between Ben Gorm and the Sheeffrys, its elemental reflection shimmering in the darkening waters of Doo Lough; a magical close to a memorable 14.5 km climb. Linkback:
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Picture: View from Doo Lough of "green ramp"
david bourke on Mweelrea, 2007
by david bourke  5 May 2007
25th March 2007

Climbed Mweelrea on a beautiful sunny day. The access route chosen was via the green ramp on the Northern slopes. Parked on a lay by just past the top end of Doo Lough at L8224769909 starC. Backtracked down the road and crossed between the two lakes. From this viewpoint neither the summit or the route is visible, however as you progress towards the ramp it becomes clear. Headed SW from the lakes, traversing the hill under Ben Lugamore at around the 500 contour. Once on the ramp the climb up to the ridge involves nothing more than a steady climb of approx 230m on a grassy incline.
Arrived onto the ridge at L8050367866 starD. At this point the clear outline of Mweelrea summit could be seen. Time for a well deserved lunch stop.
From the ridge decided to walk along the escarpment to the summit cairn of Ben Bury at 795m. The ground descended southwest to a spur at 630m. L7925767602 starE, before the final ascent. From the saddle it was a good pull up on to the final ridge and then on to the summit. There is no trig point or cairn but today the views more than compensated.
Didn’t delay too long at the summit. Returned to the point on the ridge where we had lunch and from there continued east up on to spot point 803 L8121267356 starF on Ben Lugamore. I really enjoyed this part of the walk. The cliffs on the Northern side are extremely steep and dangerous. There is a well trodden path that marks the way. Continued eastward to spot height 760. Bore slightly southeast from here before the final descent east, via a steep gully. Crossed the Owengarr River at a small sluice at L8440367010 starG.
How I would have loved to hop into the car at this stage! No alternative but to leg it along the entire length of Doo Lough. Ouch! The feet ached.
Arrived back at the car having completed 19.6km.
This is a classic walk and one of the best I have ever done in Ireland so far. Linkback:
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Picture: Looking back at exposed section at end of ramp. You can see how narrow it is from my footprints.
murphysw on Mweelrea, 2008
by murphysw  6 Mar 2008
Mweelrea is magnificent. Certainly any of the guidebooks I have read do not do justice to the challenge in climbing it and certainly not to the dangers inherent in doing so. For this is certainly not a peak to be taken lightly. Joss Lynam in his 'Best Irish Walks' says that Mweelrea is a most inhospitable mountain in the dark. Well, it also requires both concentration and caution in the day and thats when you have a clearish day like I had. I wouldn't want to try this in mist and certainly never in high winds. I would rate the upper section of the ramp as even a bit harder than the Beenkeragh ridge. I have done both and felt far more unsettled on Mweelrea. The lower and middle section of the ramps are tough on fitness levels but not much more than that. At the top of the ramp, which I expected to drop me off at the top of the col between Ben Bury and Ben Lugmore things get rather hairy. The ramp tilts towards the valley below and it is quite confusing as to where to go initially. You have to cross this slope whereupon you meet a very narrow path between the sheer face of the mountain above and the gully below. A single wrong step will pitch you down the gully into the valley and it is only a couple of feet wide. In good conditions its fine if terrifying. This leaves you at a large cairn between the two Bens. Mweelrea itself is still disconcertingly far off. Again, in bad conditions the corrie of Lough Bellawaum is more than a threat and the summit itself is a risky spot with the corrie of Lough Lugaloughan down below. The Twelve Pins were covered in fog so I ran (literally) back to the ramp in case I was caught in mist. My heart was back in my mouth as I made my way across the cliff back to the ramp. Even at the bottom of the ramp I had difficulty in picking my way back into the valley. Definately I mountain I would recommend not doing alone, I did so and it makes you fell VERY small and vulnerable. Nonetheless, easily the best challenge I have faced on any mountain (irish or otherwise) and the high points of the four provinces are now complete! Linkback:
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woody on Mweelrea, 2009
by woody  6 May 2009
i met said militant farmer having mistaken his land for the right of way and had a half hour "HEATED CONVERSATION " with him, in the end he relented and let us on our way with a warning to tell all and sundry to use the right of way and not his land, which is fair enough, so consider yourselves told, as mentioned in the post before this, the right of way is about a kilometre BEFORE the beach and not up mr farmers driveway ... Linkback:
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Picture: Towards Delphi from Mweelrea
From the West - now with complimentary sunglasses.
by murraynolan  30 Jul 2010
Enjoyed a great walk up Mweelrea yesterday with two pals. I was wary of tackling 'The Ramp' so planned on approaching from the west, which turned out to be a good idea as the clouds were pretty constantly fixed at around 550 - 600 meters.

We parked up at the Cul de Sac sign at Dadreen - just past the pink house. From here a path runs along the stream before passing through a gate into open fields.

Shortly after leaving the gate we managed to lose a pair of much loved sunglasses and spent about 20 minutes trying to retrace our steps, but to no avail.

Walking on towards the col between Ben Bury and Mweelrea we forged up a steep section of the hill rather than baring slightly left along the course of the stream, arriving about 20 meters above the col.

The views down in both directions were great, with Ben Lugmore looking very impressive when the clouds cleared.

From here it was a surprisingly short walk to the summit where we enjoyed some of the Atlantic's finest clouds with just the occasional glimps down into the abyss.

We retracted our steps and spent a further 40 minutes doing our best CSI Mayo impression while looking for the glasses - but again, we couldn't locate them.

All in all a great walk. I'd love to tackle the classic route next time out, but it looks like a blue sky day would make for a more comfortable experience.

Finally, I have never seen so many frogs in my life as those found on the western slope of Mweelrea. With almost every step little fellas of all shades of green and brown were hopping out of our way.

Our hike took 5hrs 45 minutes, including about 1'45 for sunglass hunting and coffee drinking. This marks my 19th County Top. Linkback:
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Picture: View of the mountain from the farm track
Good, solid hike.
by caillin_deas  1 Oct 2020
Visited Mweelrea on Sept 27th '20. Approached from the West - started at a small trail at L76448 68822 starH . I set a grid bearing of 120deg. Really boggy once you were in open mountain. Lots of little streams and places to sink in a bit. I'd advise gaiters for this hike on any day that hasn't seen only sunshine for a few weeks before. Quite a steep ascent to the col between 2 peaks L79298 67603 starI - make sure not to get yourself on a very steep section or it'll just be stress trying not to slip.

Turn right when you get to the col and head up to the peak L78977 66813 starJ over a load of boulders. Plenty of scrambling about and keeping an eye out for the pretty steep drop off on the left!

There were a few paths here and there - some beside the river, some on the very last part before the peak. There was thick cloud cover over the peak and probably more than 2/3 of the way down the mountain - I'd suggest a compass, map and a pre-planned route if you're doing this one in poor visibility.

Overall, I enjoyed this hike. It was good navigation practice. The views over the bay were fabulous but I couldn't see anything once I got into the clouds so can't really comment on the view from the top! Took about 4.5hrs with plenty of little stops along the way. Linkback:
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Open Street Map
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British summit data courtesy:
Database of British & Irish Hills
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