Joe gives some admirers from Cedars Walkers a short impromptu demo on deportment at Kilbroney. The party then climbed up to Clough More the big stone before retiring to the Whistledown for lunch. A good time was had by all. Happy Christmas.
Mike led an enjoyable 7 mile hike up to Lough Shannagh before climbing Carn Mountain and Slieve Muck. All that and still back in Portadown for 4:45pm! Phew!
Click to enlarge.For more pics of the Lough Shannagh walk click here.
The Coalisland Canal walk got a small but happy following, led by Joe. The canal opened in 1789 to bring coal from Coalisland to Dublin via the River Blackwater, Lough Neagh and Newry Canal. Coalisland acted as an inland port with lighters carrying grain for the mills and provisions for the surrounding towns. Between Macks Bridge and Moor Bridge the River Torrent is one side of the Towptath and the canal is on the other.
Doctor Who lands in the Mournes. Gordon led a walk starting at Trassey Track but it seems to have ventured into a time warp with unexpected consequences - see right.
Click on pics to enlarge - if you dare!
Mike's BIG walk left Trassey for a tough 9 mile walk in glorious December weather through Hare's Gap, past the Shelter Stone at the head of Ben Crom Reservoir, The Ben Crom Dam Wall, Contour around Ben Crom, The Blue Lough, Gap between Slieve Meelmore and Slieve Bearnagh and back to the car park via via Trassey Track.
Reuben and John led a low level walk in Armagh walking round the perimeter of the Palace Grounds, calling in to the former Bishop's Palace, built 1770, to look at the great collection of Vallely paintings and relax in the Lord Mayor's parlour. John gave a commentary on historical Armagh and what he couldn't remember he made up.
The sun attempted to put in an appearance as we were leaving the City Hotel but, despite John's best efforts, everyone appeared to be just as mistified as we were when we arrived!
The high level walks was to Slieve Croob where walkers enjoyed superb weather but were deenied the thrills and spills of previous years by an excess of sunshine. Someone left a pair of fine black gloves and sun glasses at Cafe Thyme in Dromore - at least we assume it was a Cedars Walker - they (gloves and glasses) are safe and well and currently resident in Lurgan. Contact John for more information.
Our walks on 17 November were at Broadwater where 24 walkers had some great views of swans and a heron with occasional glimpses of sunshine and from Leitrim Lodge into the Mournes where two groups spent some or more of their time with their heads in the clouds (see below).
On the summit tor of Pierces Castle (click on pic to enlarge).
Ascent of Tornamrock (click on pic to enlarge).
Joe's walk set off early and followed an informal track up to the Windy Gap and then on to the summit of Slievemoughanmore (559m) before descending to Rowan Tree River. The final leg followed the Mourne Way up between Rocky Mountain and Tormanrock where Joe's group met up with the larger group, led by Gordon and John, who had climbed to Pierce's Castle and Tornamrock. Despite the cold and the low clouds and the wind and the rain and the snow and the slippery conditions and the mud a good day was had by all.
It was our traditional walk at this time of year, close to Remembrance Day, from Helen's Bay station to the Somme Centre at Conlig - or Conlig to Helen's Bay. There was a little rain but plenty of sunshine too, making the autumn colours spectacular.
Click to enlarge.
Forecast wasn't great so we postponed our planned walks at Lough Fea and Carndaisy for a better day. Nevertheless, the walk on the towpath exceeded expectations and the rain stayed off most of the time.
John even spotted the blue flash of a kingfisher near Shaws Bridge.
£1,052 was raised for
Thank you to everyone who contributed so generously.
We enjoyed great support at our traditional Halloween walk at Gosford. The weather, walking and craic were almost as good as the grub.
Mike led a successful ascent of Chimney Rock from Bloody Bridge although his planned descent to the beach at Ballagh Bridge was frustrated by dense gorse. Hot feet were relieved by cool streams.
For some pictures of the Chimney Rock Mountain walk click HERE.
Those of us who chose the low level coastal walk assembled at the Twelve Arches (pictured below) before setting off clockwise round the Murlough peninsula where we were welcomed by twenty curious seals. Five intrepid men added an extra 1Km on to the end of the walk by venturing into the dunes at Murlough Nature Reserve. Definitely worth another visit. And the chips in Maghera Inn were worth another visit too! A good day was had by all.
For some pictures of the walk at Murlough click HERE.
Our walks on 13 October all started (and ended) at Tollymore. Jim let a stroll in the forest, Gordon led a perimeter walk and Derek took a group of 16 up past Lukes Mountain to the foothills of Slievenaglogh [Sliabh na gCloch] and back via the Trassey Track and Spinkwee River - 11Km in total.
For some pictures of the great walk up past Lukes Mountain and on to Slievenaglogh click HERE.
Low level walk at Carlingford and the high level walk through Ravensdale Forest to the transmitter mast at the summit of Black Mountain where the walkers were nearly blown away. But that didn't diminish our fun. All walks were a great success. Geralyn brought along a hurley stick and a sliotar for some practice shots at the Poc Fada course at Anavarna near Ravensdale. Do you recognise our star camogie player (left)? Click on pic to enlarge.
The All-Ireland Poc Fada Hurling & Camogie Championships is an annual tournament testing the skills of Ireland's best hurlers and camogie players. Poc Fada is Irish for "long puck". The Senior Hurling Final starts at "An Fhána Mór", Annaverna; competitors must puck a sliotar with a hurley to the top of Annaverna Mountain, "An Céide," and onwards to "Carn an Mhadaidh"' and after a short break continue down to "An Gabhlán," finishing back at "An Fhána Mór," Annaverna. The whole course measures 5 kilometres (3.1 miles).
On the Poc Fada course at Ananvarna. Click on pics to enlarge.
While Ruth led a group of 18 walkers on a perfect walk in Ballymoyer, Joe and his sister Nora led a larger group around and up to the summit of Bessy Bell overlooking the Baronscourt estate. Ballymoyer enjoyed perfect weather but it was a mixed day of sunshine and showers on Bessy Bell. Nevertheless we were able to enjoy spectacular 360 degree views from the summit.
Lost in the sticks?
Coming down from Bessy Bell and returning to the cars the parties became separated but the trailing group were lucky enough to have five trained leaders among them, so what could possibly go wrong? See right for answer.
Although two different levels of walk had been promised the groups were so evenly matched that it was decided that everyone would be well fit for the full course. It was however noted that despite advice had been issued that gaitors would not be needed a number of walkers flagrantly disobeyed this advice. Fixed penalty notices will be issued in due course.
From the summit of Bessy Bell you have commanding views over the Strule valley and its sister mountain Mary Gray. On a good day it is also possible to see Muckish, Errigal and Slieve Snaght mountains in County Donegal. Bessy Bell overlooks the famous Baronscourt Estate with its fine Georgian house built in 1741 but only glimpses were seen on our walk. Close by the estate is a famous Holy Well - if you drop 3 stone into the well your wish will come true!!!! Although some of us searched for the well it wasn't found.
Cedars Walkers relax and enjoy a great view of Hen from the summit of Cock.
A number of different grades of walks were offered tomorrow at Hen Track from relaxed to challenging. Mike successfully bagged the three birds - Hen, Cock and Pigeon Rock - leading some members of the group who had only planned on climbing two!
Reuben led a gentler walk at Clare Glen. Outdoor Recreation NI has been commissioned by Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon Borough Council to undertake a site assessment of Clare Glen with the aim of making recommendations to better accommodate the needs of all its visitors. They would be very grateful if Cedars Walkers or any friends who visit Clare Glen could take a few minutes to complete their questionnaire. It's very short and there are no strings attached. Just click HERE.
Click to enlarge or on symbol at bottom left of pic to stop/start slide show.
Many thanks to Millie for extra pics
Castlewellan - 15 September 2016 (click to enlarge).
We assembled in Castlewellan for a briefing at 10:30am by Jim and a short welcome by Andrew Dunlop, manager of the Jethro Centre, who joined us for the walk. The day was warm and sunny, almost too warm for walking, but a great time was had by all.
We celebrated Joan's special birthday at Maghera Inn after the walk, dining well from the à la carte menu at 4:00pm
NOTE: from September 2016 we will be grading walks
Click here description of Walk Grades.
Looking for XCedars in summer 2016 formerly on this page? Click HERE.
For Cedars Walkers in spring 2016 - click HERE.
Content from 2015 - click HERE.
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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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