Ireland day 0228. Saturday 14 May 2022- Carnavaddy4

Ireland day 0228. Saturday 14 May 2022- Carnavaddy4
Today’s summary Drove up to Ballymakellett and led the Carnavaddy loop with Clermont Cairn extension for the Dublin Walking Club.   Weather was perfect and all the recce-ing paid off.   Finished with a drink in the Lumpers.   Very successful.
Today’s weather Dry and with sunshine in the afternoon.   Light southerly wind.  About 15C
Today’s overview location
(The blue mark shows the location of our route)
Close-up location
(The green line shows where we walked)
(Click button below to download GPX of today’s walk as recorded, or see interactive map at bottom with elevations corrected):
Carnavaddly loop leading for DWC

I must admit I heaved a bit of a sigh of relief this evening.   The Carnavaddy walk I was leading for the Dublin Walking Club today went well.   So the three recces and the leprechaun hunt were time well spent.   Even the weather co-operated too.   So that’s the second walk here in Ireland that I’ve led now, and I am slowly getting a bit more confident.

Val and I set off early from Malahide this morning, pausing to pick up another club member who lives locally and who we were giving a lift to.   As ever, the drive up the M1 was straightforward and quick, and we were at the Lumpers pub (which was closed again – including sadly the coffee bar) well in advance of the starting time of 10 am.   By the time 10 o’clock came around, there were ten of us, which was a pretty good turnout considering that the Cooleys aren’t the Club’s normal hiking area (most of the walks are south of Dublin).

The route up Black Mountain was familiar now, and I knew from previous recces where all the potential points for mis-steps were.   It was pretty quiet out and about, and in fact we only saw about half a dozen people on the hill all day, despite it being a lovely sunny Saturday in May.   We were soon at the poc fada track at the valley where the eggs-in-basket drumlin topography is apparent (“drumlin” is an Irish word, by the way, as is “esker“).   From there, we followed the yellow markers to the faux dolmen on Anaverna, and then up the clear track with uncertain purpose, which leads all the way up to the col between Black Mountain and Carnavaddy.

At the col, the weather was clear, not too cold and not too windy, so the group elected unanimously to turn left and do the extra diversion to Clermont cairn, which sits atop Black Mountain.   (Although there was a bit of coercion involved as well, as I told everyone there would be no lunch stop unless we turned left).   We were soon at the top and this time we had a good look at the chambered cairn.   I think we did manage to identify the lintel stones which would originally have been over the door, but the whole thing was in a pretty ruinous state (still not bad considering it was 5000 years old) and clearly not maintained by anyone.

After a lunch break in the lee of the cairn, looking north across Carlingford Lough and out of Europe, we retraced our steps then followed the track over to Carnavaddy.   This summit was the main objective of today’s walk, even though it is actually a bit lower (475m) than Black Mountain (510m).   There’s a big cairn on the top of Carnavaddy, too, which looks similar to Clermont – and actually a bit better preserved, too.   But nobody had any idea whether the two were in any way related – Carnavaddy looked like it could be quite a lot newer – and I can’t find anything about it on the internet.

From the top, we made our way across the km-or-so of pathless bog to the track which eventually becomes the Tain (pronounced  “Torn“) Way.   I was relieved when we all made it safely across this section, as it has obvious ankle-breaking and getting-lost potential, and I had been apprehensive about how the group would manage.   Anyway it was pretty much plain sailing, and made a lot easier by the fact that the mist wasn’t down, so we could see where we were going, and by the relatively dry conditions underfoot.

Once through the tricky section, it’s an easy 5km back down to the cars, so we took it at a fairly leisurely pace and allowed ourselves a second lunch stop in a sunny picnic area in the woods on the way down.   Once back, I was further relieved to discover that the pub was open again and so the non-drivers enjoyed a well earned Guinness and the rest of us looked on in envy and tried to pretend we were enjoying our diet cokes too.

So now we are back in the flat and starting to prepare for our next outing.   We’ve got a night away tomorrow night – our first in Ireland – so come back tomorrow (assuming there’s wifi where we are staying!) to find out what we’re up to.


Today’s photos (click to enlarge)

Looking back to Carrahane (the hill on the left) from the “drumlin valley” on the way over to Anaverna, with one of the yellow poc fada track markers just visible in the centre of the picture Inquisitive visitor as we were having lunch on the top of Black Mountain
Summit cairn on Carnavaddy.   It’s lovely up here when the air is mild, the wind isn’t blowing you over, there’s no mist and it isn’t raining.   I.e. about one day in a hundred and I think we got that day today! Looking down into Carlingford Lough with Warrenpoint (on the other side of the border), the white smudge centre-left
Pause for our second lunch stop at the sunny picnic spot on the way down Looking back over our route.   If you enlarge the image enough, you can see the masts on the top of Black Mountain in the centre of the photo, then Carnavaddy is behind the tree on the right
Summit of Black Mountain from Clermont Cairn.   This time we did manage to find the lintel-stones, but the place was pretty tumbledown.   Not too surprising, perhaps, as it is at least 5000 years old.
Interactive map

(Elevations corrected at  GPS Visualizer: Assign DEM elevation data to coordinates )

Total distance: 17424 m
Max elevation: 505 m
Min elevation: 56 m
Total climbing: 718 m
Total descent: -715 m
Total time: 06:14:55
Download file: Carnavaddy 4 DWC corrected.gpx

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