Cedars Walkers stop briefly at the Big Stone before lunch in the Whistledown on 18 December 2014.
Robert Lee, age 20, and Ann T's cousin's son, completing the 600m and Vandeleur-Lynam lists. Robert is believed to be the youngest person to have done this. A Vandeleur-Lynam is a summit in Ireland with a height of at least 600m above sea level and prominence of at least 15m. The original version of this hill list was compiled by Rev. C.P Vandeleur and Joss Lynam, and now comprises 269 summits. Cedars has a bit to go but we congratulate Robert!
Due to some last minute cancellations a few seats have come available on the coach. Contact John by the usual channels if you would like one of them. Everyone whose name was on the reserve list now has a seat. Click HERE to check if your name is on the list. A big thank you to Gordon and Muriel who gave up their seats and are going to drive instead.
Coach pickup will be at Portadown Rugby Club at 9:40am (please park in lower car park), at College Walk, Lurgan at 9:55am, at Jethro Centre at 10:00 (please park with consideration for other users of Jethro Centre) and at Waringstown at 10:15am. All times are approximate - but don't be late. We will walk at Kilbroney before lunch which will be at 2:00pm and the bus will leave Whistledown at 5:00pm.
Chilling out on Slievenaslat
As anticipated, the worst of the weather had passed for our walk in Castlewellan. It was cold with some sunny spells and just a hint of wintry showers - although our numbers were few it was another great day for a walk. Please send any nice pics you have taken to John. Click HERE to view those received so far.
Postponed from 06 November, we returned to Carlingford on 04 December with choice of hilly and more level options - including the new coastal path. John and Ann took time off to visit family Glasgow so thanks to Mike for stepping in and leading a successful ascent of Slieve Foye. To see some photographs of the level walk (only 3 pics supplied so far) click HERE.
It's a tough job but somebody's got to do it! John leads a bevy of lovely ladies astray
in the foothills of Slievenagore.
Happiness is a good walk with friends - click to enlarge:picture by Anne Keville
Murlough -Thursday 20 November 2014. To see some more of Anne's photographs of the walk at Murlough click HERE.
After the weather forecast the previous week proved to be rather pessimistic (constant heavy rain turned out to be occasional light showers) one hesitated to use the forecast again but there were yellow warnings for both wind and rain in force for Thursday, 13 November between 10:00am and 4:00pm in afternoon. This forced us to abandon our planned walk to Helen's Tower and we stayed closer to home, again on a canal towpath, this time starting at Scarva. Despite a bit of a soaking about 40 walkers had another great day. There are no phgotographs of walks - photographers please send your best pics to John for publication on web site.
Forecast for Thursday, 06 November was for Rain, Rain, Rain (and wind), forcing us to postpone our trip to Carlingford and instead revert to a slightly more sheltered Lagan Canal Tow Path. So it came as a great surprise that we missed the worst of the weather, having to endure no more than a few light showers - not such a great day for ducks after all.
To see some photographs of the Lagan towpath walk click HERE.
We had our Hallowe'en fundraising walk in Gosford Forest on Thursday 30th October. Our good cause this year was Barnardos. An excellent lunch was provided by volunteers in the comfort of the the Girl Guide house. Distance walked in a full circumnavigation of the Park was 7km or a tad over 4½ miles.
So far lunch has raised £1,040 for Barnardos and a further £250 should come as a result of gift aid. Well done to all who took part and thank you for generous donations.
To see some photographs of the walk click HERE.
We had another great day on 23 October at one of our favourite spots - Kilbroney, Rostrevor
John's group first walked down to the broadleaved Rostrevor Wood, a mature oak woodland at least 250 years old and possibly an ancient woodland. Climbing up past Fiddlers' Green we came to Cloughmore, known locally as "The Big Stone" (from Irish an Chloch Mhór), a huge granite boulder approximately 30 tons in weight sitting about 300m above Rostrevor. It is a glacial erratic, which was probably transported from Scotland (from an island in Strathclyde bay) and deposited by retreating ice during the last Ice Age although it has also been suggested (wrongly it would appear) that it came from Scandinavia. Even less likely is the local legend which has it that the stone was thrown from the Cooley Mountains, on the other side of Carlingford Lough, by the giant Fionn mac Cumhaill.
The group pressed on to the Summit of Slieve Martin and were delighted to enjoy clear views over Carlingford Lough before their descent through the Sitka Spruce plantation and back to the Kilbroney Café. It was a relatively short walk at a little over 4 miles but, with a total ascent of over 500m, a bracing and enjoyable one. To see photographs of the walk click HERE.
The majority of the group walked along the Mourne Way to Yellow Water with some opting to take the higher route back via the Kilbroney Red Bog which still contains small remnants of intact bog and is one of the two known NI sites of the few-flowered sedge. Total miles covered for Red Bog were 7.52 and walking time was 3 hours 42 minutes; swimming time was not recorded. To see photographs of the walk click HERE - with thanks to Anne Keville and Trevor Gibson for additional material.
Tea and buns in the café were enjoyed by all after the walk.
Thursday's walks on the Divis and Black Mountain trails were a case of déjà vu all over again with low cloud hiding the masts until we were upon them. We got a brief clear spell and enjoyed great views over Belfast before returning to our cars in the rain. Belfast below us was not so lucky and many of its residents endured flooding as a result of heavy downpours. The Heath Trail round the back of Divis, past the standing stone on Mount Gilbert and ending up beside the triangulation point on Black Mountain was 6.5 miles long - 7.5 mile if the new Ridge Trail was included. The straight assault on Black Mountain and back was about 4 miles.
Thursday's forecast had promised some showers but as things turned out we had a remarkably dry, if rather cold, day for our walks. First impressions when we arrived at Spelga Dam car park were that poor visibility might stop play but as we travelled towards the coast the mist cleared. Those who climbed Cove managed an amazing 14.59km which equals 9 miles 115.82 yards in more familiar units of measurement. It was a long day (back in Jethro at about 6:30pm) but a great walk. Apologies to those who were inconvenienced by our late arrival back at Carrick Little, exacerbated by lack of a phone signal. Will try to plan better next time. To see some pictures of the walk click HERE
Well done to all who took part on walk - maximum distance travelled (from Holywood station to Bangor station) was 9.82 miles. It was perfect weather - perhaps the best we will see for some time.
Our walks were along Portstewart strand towards the Bar Mouth and along the Coastal Path to Portrush and the White Rocks. If Ramore Head was included (and it should have been) the latter walk totalled almost 13Km, a little over 8 miles.
A number of walkers grabbed the opportunity to dip their toes in the water. To see some more pictures of the walk click HERE.
The Walking Group Leader Award has been remodelled and renamed as the Hill and Moorland Leader award. Training is provided at Tollymore National Outdoor Centre and the next course will be held in spring 2015.
This is a demanding but very enjoyable course and if any of our members are keen to undertake this training, and to take an increased leadership role within the group, Cedars may pay some or more of the costs involved. Talk to one of the leaders if interested. If enough people (of a suitable profile) are prepared to make the commitment Tollymore could organise a course specifically for us.
Email enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org
We will leave Jethro Centre on the morning of walks at 10:00am unless otherwise agreed. Planned walks may change right up to the last minute. If travelling directly to the start point sign up for John's text messaging service to stay up to date.
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