Over 40 walkers assembled at the bottom of Shannon’s Lane for the club’s annual introduction to hillwalking. With the first pause at the World War II bomb site on the lane, the group proceeded uphill until the turn down to the Aughnabrisky River which all forded withoute mishap; then the climb to Clorogue Mor was accomplished in good time where an early lunch was enjoyed with a spectacular panorama thanks to the excellent visibility – a bonus for new walkers who had not been on the mountains previously.
The group then split into those who were keen to go all the way to the top of Mt. Leinster and those who were happy to aim for Stoney Top which provided a taste of the more normal conditions on Irish hills with a stiff breeze blowing.
Descent towards the cars was by the track from Stoney Top with a sos beag on the way ; both groups were reunited at Bowe’s in Kiltealy.
General satisfaction was expressed at the day even if there were admissions of stiff joints!
A big thank you to the club walk leaders and members who accompanied the prospective members in what may be the first of many walks on Irish uplands!
Sunday’s walk in the Comeraghs was blessed with balmy weather and great visibility ; the route was from Dalligan Bridge up to Seefin passing a number of archaeological features on the way including the incongruously painted standing stone at the Barnamaddra Gap. The welcome lunch break was enjoyed in the shelter of the hut atop Seefin and return was via the internationally important archaeological site that is the Araglin Valley.
A group of 7 successfully completed the club based Mountain Skills Assessment last wk end in the Comeraghs. Conditions on Saturday were as difficult as any Mt Skills group should ever have to deal with. Continuous drizzle, and heavier rain at times, together with very windy, gusty conditions demanded high levels of skill and resilience from this group to keep their cool and retain focused. The team had prepped well in the last number of weeks practicing their night navigation, some of which was also in poor weather.
The assessment was expertly led by Darach Ó’Murchú, Sinéad Pollock and Aodhnait O’Carroll. The atmosphere was supportive and instructional and candidates continued to add to their learning over the wk end.
Needless to say there was great relief and jubilation on Sunday evening when success all round was announced!
Looking forward to seeing some new names on the Leaders section of future walk schedules.
This week will be the last Wednesday evening club session at Rocklands for this season. Quite a few ‘visitors’ had the opportunity to ‘have a go’ at rockcliming over the Summer. Thanks to Paul O’Brien who sets up every week and does huge work maintaining routes and access.
The club will have a SCRAMBLING day in the Comeraghs next Sat Sep 15th. This session would suit anyone who came along to 1 or 2 climbing evenings this year and would like to try some very simple boulder challenges. Get in touch through e mail, Facebook or contact Colette for more details.
Here are a few photos from this summer’s MI Alpine Meet, which some club members took part in. The meet takes place in a different spot in the Alps each year, and offers plenty of opportunities for hillwalkers as well as for rock climbers and those heading out onto the glaciers and higher peaks. This year’s meet was held in Val Di Mello, north of Milan on the Italian-Swiss border.
One good thing about hillwalking in the Alps is the multitude of well-marked and signposted tracks, which means you don’t have to worry so much about navigation in bad weather, or wading through boggy ground, thick heather, etc.