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Mourne Mountains Area
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Ben Crom Mountain Binn Chrom A name in Irish
(Ir. Binn Crom or Beann Chrom [PNNI], 'curved/stooped peak') Down County, in Arderin List, Granite granophyre Bedrock

Height: 526m OS 1:50k Mapsheet: 29 Grid Reference: J31291 26007
Place visited by 246 members. Recently by: Xiom5724, maryt, Reeks2011, atlantic73, LorraineG60, Hound-of-Ulster, guestuser, LorraineG, melohara, trostanite, dr_banuska, IainT, MichaelG55, DelStewart, jlk
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Longitude: -5.990583, Latitude: 54.166298 , Easting: 331291, Northing: 326007 Prominence: 81m,  Isolation: 1.1km
ITM: 731211 826012,   GPS IDs, 6 char: BnCrm, 10 char: Ben Crom
Bedrock type: Granite granophyre, (Mourne Mountains granite)

Ben Crom overlooks the Ben Crom Reservoir, situated upstream from the older Silent Valley Reservoir. It was constructed in 1957 to meet Belfast's growing demand for water.   Ben Crom is the 485th highest place in Ireland.

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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Ben Crom in area Mourne Mountains, Ireland
Picture: Ben Crom from its eponymous Dam (photo simon3)
Diminutive, irascible Mourne summit
Short Summary created by Peter Walker,  4 Sep 2017
Ben Crom is an excellent example of a mountain as a game of two halves, rising as it does in a relatively benign fashion from the raised plateau sprawling south-eastwards from Slieve Meelbeg. From this direction it pales in comparison to the nearby citadel of Doan, but beyond its summit it collapses dramatically in cliffs and scree to the Ben Crom dam.

The summit is reached in comparative comfort from any walks that explore the higher hills to the west: a number of paths cross the easy gradients from this direction, but due attention must be paid to the bogginess of the ground.

The only realistic 'base to summit' ascent is from the dam to the south. A direct ascent from here will involve rock climbing, although 'mere' scrambling ascents can be contrived from gullies further right. For a walking ascent turn left at the end of the dam (314256 A) before soon taking the path on the right which leads up the valley of the Ben Crom river. After approximately 500m use your judgement to strike up the slopes of Ben Crom on the right; too soon and you will encounter rough ground. The summit should be easily attained and the reward is a lovely belvedere with a superb aerial view of the dam and very interesting perspectives of the inner fastnesses of the High Mournes. Trackback: https://mountainviews.ie/summit/404/comment/5163/
MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Ben Crom in area Mourne Mountains, Ireland
Picture: Ben Crom with silent valley in background
Soggy Trip
by chrizoneill  2 Jun 2011
Travelling up from the car park on the Slievenaman road is a doddle until you turn of the track that encircles Meelbeg and leads up to Bearnagh. After this the land that looked so easy to cross is quite peaty and holds water and ‘muck’ for a bit longer than most of the surroundings, making it that little bit harder to cross than you might otherwise imagine. Once through this however and out the other site you can begin tackling the relatively short upward slope. On the day we were there the wind was extremely high, which meant peering over the top nearly took our heads off. It all was worth it though as once at the top the commanding view from right in the heart of the inner Mournes made it all worthwhile. Not the most challenging in the Mournes, and a little awkward for the marsh that you have to traverse, but still good. Trackback: https://mountainviews.ie/summit/404/comment/6367/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Ben Crom in area Mourne Mountains, Ireland
Picture: Scramble routes on Ben Crom (Summit Gully - red, alternative - green, Great Gully - blue)
mcrtchly on Ben Crom, 2010
by mcrtchly  30 Mar 2010
Sometimes we like to find alternative routes up the hills that we climb, in particular a good rock scramble provides a challenging way to the top. Scrambling is not to be taken lightly but although not full-on rock climbing, it does need some skills. A helmet is the minimum requirement and sometimes a harness, rope and slings/nuts are necessary.

Having skirted around Ben Crom on the eastern side of Ben Crom Reservoir we crossed the dam and then turned right along the foot of Ben Crom. We gradually ascended diagonally up the steep slope of the hill across a boulder field until we reached a prominent patch of heather running down the hillside. This was followed upwards to the foot of the Summit Gully (J314259 B) at an elevation of 375m (about 150m below the summit). The Summit Gully is an almost vertical gash in the side of the mountain with steep enclosed walls in the lower part which casts an obvious shadow on the mountain.

The climb up the Summit Gully (red line on the photograph) is mostly a moderate scramble but the crux of the route is just 10m above the start where some large boulders block the gully. Climbing up under the boulders and stepping right on the gully wall gives a difficult or VD climb to surmount the boulders. There is no protection here, the rock is slippery with vegetation and a fall for the leader would be serious. An alternative to the direct ascent of the gully and a by-pass of the boulders is to traverse right (NE) for about 20 metres to gain an easy scramble (green line on the photograph) up mixed rock and vegetation and then traverse left back into the gully. Soon the gully begins to widen out across a heather covered slope below the main vertical cliffs on Ben Crom before narrowing again towards the top. The final scramble up a short rock face in the gully exits almost precisely at the summit of Ben Crom.

For those who don’t fancy the scramble route to the summit there is an easier route further NE up the Great Gully. To get to the Great Gully (J315260 C) traverse about 130m NE along a sheep track from the foot of the Summit Gully. The Great Gully is a prominent grassy ramp ascending at an angle up the hillside (blue line on the photograph).

Once again, it must be emphasised that any route up the eastern face of Ben Crom should not be undertaken lightly. Experience and proper equipment are essential, as is sufficient time to complete the route. We had to expend quite a bit of time in route finding which is not very obvious once you are on the face of the hill. Trackback: https://mountainviews.ie/summit/404/comment/4559/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Ben Crom in area Mourne Mountains, Ireland
Picture: Silent Valley Reservoir from Ben Crom
kernowclimber on Ben Crom, 2010
by kernowclimber  29 Mar 2010
We set out from a parking spot at J311 315 D for the Hare’s Gap via the Trassey Track under powdery blue skies with a slight spring chill in the air. The light reflected luridly off the towering wet cliffs below Slievenaglogh as we wove a route up over the boggy and rocky slope to gain the Hare’s Gap. Here the fine spring weather had brought out a number of people who swarmed around the Mourne Wall like gnats!

We beat a hasty retreat from shrieking children and barking dogs to the relative calm of the valley opposite, descending towards Ben Crom Reservoir. The path was unclear in places and periodically boggy underfoot but we soon reached the spot where the Kilkeel River tumbles down into the reservoir over a series of small waterfalls. We picked our way across the river on the tops of granite boulders, pausing awhile to enjoy the sight of the water which in places cascaded chaotically downwards in a rush of whiteness, showering thousands of glistening droplets into deep and secretive lime green pools beneath, or flowed languidly over smooth granite in large scallop-shell patterns.

The pathway skirting the reservoir looked deceptively level from higher up but involved climbing over boulders, clambering upwards to avoid eroded areas and dropping in and out of small gullies conveying the last of the run-off from the recent snows. Boulders fringed the reservoir in a gleaming white ring; opposite towered Ben Crom, eastern slopes stretching wickedly upwards to a shattered granite face containing several deep gashes, the far left of which cast an ominous shadow but looked climbable. We traversed the wall of the dam and turned right to scramble up and over a tumbled mass of angular granite boulders to draw level with the beginning of the gully (route upwards described separately), enjoying the croaky cries of ravens that were soaring high above the indigo waters of the dam.

The gully delivered us close to the summit that offers striking vistas of Slieve Binnian, Doan and Slieve Bearnagh, granite sentinels guarding a fairytale kingdom of wild bog and moorland fringed by the sea. We progressed north via a maze of peat hags amid very squelchy bog to join a path skirting the lower slopes of Slieve Meelbeg. Passing above Blue Lough we spied a rising moon, rich and full as clotted cream, casting its mysterious, elemental reflection in brackish water. Beyond, Slieve Bearnagh’s jagged tors were etched majestically against a purpling sky.

From the saddle at J309 282 E between Slieve Meelmore and Slieve Bearnagh the rocky route past Pollaphuca to the Trassey Track absolutely tortures tired feet. The air was still, broken only by the soft hooting of an owl and perfumed with wood smoke as we neared our car 9 hours and 18kms later, prompting thoughts of home, a welcoming fire and single malt. The Mournes are truly magical and never fail to delight. Trackback: https://mountainviews.ie/summit/404/comment/4553/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Ben Crom in area Mourne Mountains, Ireland
Picture: Only the Crombliest ...
Bleck Cra on Ben Crom, 2005
by Bleck Cra  11 Nov 2005
Ta me ag foghlaim na Gaeilge. Cen fa? Who knows. A tutor advises, without a word of invitation, that the word “skitter” derives direct from the Irish. Au contraire, “skitter” slews up the trail to us from Scandinavia via the Ulster Scots infinitive: “fur ‘til skite”. Coconut to the him or her who can descend either Slieve Carn or Meal Beag in present conditions without skiting upon their respective “A”s. Down go the apples; up go the underskirts. Both small, dour lumps huff summer-long in the shadow of their more illustrious peers but now, in an annual fest of self-assertion, up-end every rider astride their oiled, dull backs. Skite marks from summit to saddle: and each themselves marked by derision until one’s own fein ends up on one’s own. And so the chiropractor is denied another session. Crack, rattle, click. B’stard! Whoosh, whooph, thump. Effer! And on and on endlessly until you emerge barely conscious at the other side. The price…. ? Free, because the bold adventurer is elligle to enter this skite-pond by Crom. Ahh Crom: like a favourite, dodgy aunt. “watch the china; Crom is coming today.” Not high by any standards, but if you come to her by Bearnagh and her tiresome bog, a reasonably tough ask and an enormous reward. Don’t be flash when you’re up there on your own, the vertigo can kill you before the rocks below will. This is one of the most serious drops in the Mournes. Amid primeaval environs with white water surging through bog culverts to spurt head-height into the void, Crom trips and stumbles amongst broken castles, in weak, wounded founds; like a foot wrong would bring the entire effort down on top of us. How a wise man comes at her is for another wise man to know. Trackback: https://mountainviews.ie/summit/404/comment/2049/
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MountainViews.ie Picture about mountain Ben Crom in area Mourne Mountains, Ireland
Picture: I couldn't find a pic on my laptop, I apologise this pic isn't the best, but it gives a wee bit of a
Alex92 on Ben Crom, 2007
by Alex92  7 Nov 2007
Crom! What a mountain! It only sits 300-odd feet above the valley between it and Bearnagh, this NE approach to the summit being the easiest. Approaching from this side, I would advise you to wear gaiters as it's more boggy than the Mississippi floodplain! However, when viewed from the East (at the Ben Crom reservoir, or from the slopes of Binnian) it looks a lot more menacing! The Eastern slopes of Ben Crom presents some of the steepest ground in all of Mourne, just look at how close the contours are on the map! Start at the Blue Quarry/Ott carpark and follow the track past Ott, over the stile and between Carn and Slieve Loughshannagh. Curve around the edge of Loughshannagh to join the path which skirts Doan and heads towards 'Crom. An alternative route would be to start from the Carrick Little carpark and to follow the track past Binnian and the Annalong Wood, then take the path which forks left and follow it past the Blue Lough to Lamagan. Zig-zag down Lamagan to the path above the Ben Crom Reservoir, cross the dam and begin the strenuous climb to the summit of 'Crom! The latter of the suggested routes would be my favourite. Trackback: https://mountainviews.ie/summit/404/comment/2891/
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