Carrick Little carpark at Carrick (J345 219)
was the starting point for my Binnian walk. I followed the track up into the valley via a thoughtful stone stile.
I left the main track and kept close to the wall on my left as I started to climb. I ignored other walls that branched off. The views across the valley and over the Annalong Wood were great with Donard and Commedagh clearly visible to the north.
I eventually climbed over the wall at approx C (J327 234)
and headed towards Binnian East Top. A strong wind pushed me up to the summit. Great views to the south towards Slieve Foye and beyond.
I battled the wind back to the wall and followed it up to a stile at approx D (J325 233)
. I crossed the stile and headed off to a point between two summit tors. I decided not to just follow the wall as it seemed to head directly to a rocky tor which looked dangerous to climb.
I quickly reached the summit of Slieve Binnian. I enjoyed the amazing views and explored the tors. I expected to find the summit busy but there was no one there. Besides the lack of people I was also amazed at the lack of wildlife-are there no deer or hares in the Mournes?
I next headed to Binnian North Top and North Tor, admiring the celebrated Back Castles on the way.
I climbed the North Tor from the East side. It was a spectacular viewpoint and an excellent location for lunch. The first people I saw in the Mournes that day jogged past below- these Mountain Runners are a tough breed! Again I thought it a shame that so few appeared to be out enjoying these beautiful hills.
Next I dropped down to the track at E (J321 256)
, admiring the view of Ben Crom Reservoir from Buzzard’s Roost (F (J319 253)
) on the way. My original plan to head home down the track was abandoned as I headed up Lamagan. Walking alone brings this freedom of deciding on a whim to alter a planned walk.
I found it tough going and I was glad to stop and chat to a couple on the way up. They eagerly named all visible summits, reminding me of my habit of offering to help every time I see a car stopped at Sally Gap in Wicklow with bewildered tourists poring over a map!
After Lamagan I headed NNE into the col at G (J331 267)
and up Cove. The top arrived quickly and I briefly enjoyed the view before heading back to the col and headed SE to find the marked track on the map. This brought me down the side of the bluffs in the area of H (J334 261)
where I saw rock climbers hard at work.
I saw people camping in the trees as I passed Annalong Wood which I thought was pleasant until I saw the remains of previous camps. Abandoned torn-down tents, rubbish, old fires and damaged trees. I then met a loud group of lads heading up from the carpark toting crates of beer.
However this didn’t spoil my 7+ hours of bliss in the Mournes. Reading various MV routes is great preparation but “getting out there” will always bring its own unique experiences! I only discovered Simon 3’s Walk Guide for a similar route on MV after my walk but I was happy with my choice! Linkback: mountainviews.ie/summit/79/comment/3247/