2018 Walking Season

Lough Mohra after lunch last Sunday

Next up on Sunday April 29th - we are off to the Galtees with Irene. We meet in Cahir Castle car park at 10.00. - Grade B+ but, as with everything recently, is weather dependent.

Hardy Annuals on Carrauntoohil

Club Killarney Weekend
Twenty four of us turned up on Saturday morning for the planned challenging linear walk along the Caher Ridge to Carrauntoohil. Because of the large numbers we decided to divide up into two groups consisting of 16 hardy annuals and eight half-hardy ones. Both groups started from the Hydro Road car park near Lough Acoose.
Mystery Tour - Where we going?
The first two hours involved a lot of hard work as we climbed up the southern shoulder of the beautiful Coumloughra glen with its ribbon lakes. Behind us to the north the views to the north and west expanded as we gained height – Dingle Bay and the mountains of Dingle Peninsula, Inch Strand, Glenbeigh, Lough Caragh.

Bernie takes a breather - Dingle Bay in the distance

When we reached Caher West at 975 metres elevation, we had reached the Caher Ridge proper.
Half-hardy annuals on Caher summit
From here the ridge first trended east then north east for the final pull up to Carrauntoohil. The weather while dry with good if intermittent visibility, was now posing a serious problem because of strong winds and dangerous gusts.
Caher Ridge Path
Down to our right lay the Bridia and Black Valleys with lovely lakes like Curraghmore and Cummeenduff Loughs. Beyond them lay the sea of mountains that populate the Iveragh Peninsula. We could make out the towering Bruaghnabinnia, Knockaunattin and Mullaghanattin, “the Kerry Matterhorn”.
Descent to the col above Black Mare`s Gully
Unfortunately, we could devote little time to the beauty before us as all our attention was needed to make our way safely across the arete`s narrow rocky path in the dangerous windy conditions. After the descent to the col at the top of the Black Mare`s Gully, it was one last uphill to Carrauntoohil.

After lunch on the roof of Ireland we faced another daunting challenge – the descent down the 300 metres high Devil`s Ladder.
Descending the Devil`s Ladder
The lower third was especially iffy as a lot of the scree and boulders here were wet.
Waiting in the Men`s shed in Cronin`s Yard
The final trek through the Hag`s Glen between Loughs Gouragh and Callee and alongside the Gadagh stream was uneventful and soon our destination in Cronin`s Yard was reached. Here the hardy annuals enjoyed a cuppa while they waited for the half-hardy ones who were enjoying a couple of torrential showers over the last half an hour or so!

On Sunday the intention was to do Torc Mountain. However, the exertions of Saturday together with the forecast of heavy showers put paid to that. The resultant change of plan led to a walk akin to one devised by a committee i.e. it was democratically arrived at, had plenty input, had the odd mistake, and took longer to complete than originally intended! Still, the result wasn`t half bad and we even discovered Cardiac Hill on the northern flanks of Torc Mountain, although we didn`t count the steps!
Wet walkers topping out on Torc walk

A word of thanks to John, Irene and Mick for doing the guiding and also to Emily for organizing the bus and meal. The damper on the weekend was of course the broken wrist suffered by Emily. Everybody hopes you recover quickly Emily and are back with us soon. Thanks to Brian and Kathleen for taking Emily to hospital.

New Members
New members are welcomePlease contact Vernon (club chair) at 086-3059830 or Rosemarie (club secretary) at 0863936879 or Mick (club walks` coordinator) at  087-2927077 or Emily at 0866784094. Club rules allow 2 walks with the club before making a commitment to joining. Suggest intending members start with a couple of easy/short walks to acclimatize. Club rules and guidelines are posted on the site.

Grading of Walks
Grading walks can be very subjective. For our club purposes they are:
Grade A: 5-7 hours – to the plateaux and ridges. Strenuous. May be some scrambling.
Grade B: 3-5 hours – to the coums and lower hills. Rarely above 600 metres.
Grade C: 1-3 hours – on forest paths and back roads. Rarely over 10 km long.

Meeting Points and Times
All walks will start at approx 10.30. Meeting time is usually 10.00. Car pooling is encouraged for environmental reasons. If we meet for car pooling we will allow for travelling time. Most walks will be looped/horseshoe walks. Posted on the site using this formula: Date/Grade/Area/Meeting Point and Time and Leader.

Walk Changes due to weather etc.
Check with the designated leader  - Mick 0872927077 or Irene 0872359598 or Rens 0860473150 or John 0863398759 or Vernon 0863059830.

Ramblers` Walking Schedule 2017-18

Date              Grade     Mt Range       Meeting Point       Leader

Sun Apr 29th   B     Galtees                     Cahir Castle 10.00   Irene

Sun May 6th   Free Sunday - Bank Holiday Weekend
Sun May 13th  A      Knockmealdowns    Venue later  10.00   John
Sun May 20th  C     To be announced       Venue later  10.00   Ann
Sun May 27th  B      Comeraghs                Rathgorm    10.00  John
Rathgormack Ramblers
Rathgormack is a small village situated in County Waterford in the foothills of the Comeraghs about 10 kilometres south-west of Carrick-on-Suir on the R678. Rathgormack Ramblers Hill Walking Club was founded in 2008. The club provides it`s members with an opportunity to partake in rambling and hill walking, mainly in the Comeraghs and Knockmealdowns. The club particularly urges it`s members to be aware of the need for safety on the hills and of the need to respect the communities and environments of the mountains.
We are a small club with a membership of about 40. We are affiliated to the Mountaineering Council of Ireland. All our members are insured both for personal accident and personal liability insurance. The personal accident cover is limited to very serious injuries and members should have their own more comprehensive cover.
Rules/Guidelines for club members of
Rathgormack Ramblers

1 Introduction
Rathgormack Ramblers Hill Walking Club is totally committed to the safety of its members and
considers it good practice to operate in accordance with the following guidelines.

2 Club Activities
(A) Club activities are recognised as being those which:
Are published at a club meeting.
Are published on the club website.
Are funded by the club.
Require group transport through the club.
(B) Organisers of Club Activities are bound by the conditions of the Club`s Constitution and Rules.

3 MCI Warning
(A) The Mountaineering Council of Ireland recognises that mountaineering and climbing are activities with a danger of personal injury or death. Participants should be aware of and accept this and be responsible for their own actions.
(B) Each club member is insured under the same insurance as all MCI affiliated clubs. If you require further information please contact the MCI.

4 Grades of Walks
Grading walks can be very subjective. For the purpose of our club walks:
Grade A Walks: 5-6 hours duration and over 12 km in length. Will reach 700 metres in elevation and traverse ridges and mountain tops and may involve some scrambling. A good level of fitness required.
Grade B Walks: 3-4 hours duration and 8-12 km long. Usually on lower hills or to the mountain lakes, rarely reaching over 500 metres. A reasonable level of fitness needed.
Grade C Walks: 1-3 hours duration and less than 10 km long. Usually on forest tracks,minor roads or along river banks with the odd moderate climb.

5 Club Rules/Guidelines
Car pooling is advised.
Respect private property and observe the Country Code.
Park carefully and don`t obstruct laneways, gates, traffic etc.
Members are responsible for their own actions.
Members are advised to select a walk that matches their fitness level.
If you are on medication or suffering from any condition that might affect you on the walk, you must inform the walk leader before the walk starts.
Walkers should bring with them the following essential items:
strong walking boots with good ankle support; gaiters; a hooded waterproof coat with waterproof trousers; plenty warm clothing including gloves and a hat (don`t wear jeans); sufficient liquids and food.
Walkers should consider the following recommended items:
relevant map; compass; whistle; watch; torch; first aid kit; some form of personal I.D. and the name of someone who can be contacted in the event of an accident.
All members must comply with club rules.
All members must sign walk registration form prior to each walk.
All members must follow instructions of leader at all times.
For everyone`s safety the group should stay together for the duration of the walk. A group should travel no faster than the speed of its slowest member.
Accidents should be reported to the leader immediately.
The leader has the right to refuse anyone not adequately equipped.
The leader may extend, curtail or alter the route. He/she sets the pace and walkers are expected to follow at this pace.
If you go ahead of the leader you are no longer considered to be part of the group and you are responsible for your actions and for those who follow you.
Inform the leader if you are feeling tired or if the pace is too fast for you.
Inform the leader if you wish to stop for whatever reason.
Prospective members may participate as guests on two walks.
By signing the Walk Registration Sheet at the beginning of each walk, participants-both members and visitors-agree to abide by these rules.
The Committee of Rathgormack Hill Walking Club asserts that no walk leader can be held responsible for the welfare of individuals who ignore these rules.
Week-Ends Away: Only members and their families and friends may take part in our club weekends away.

6 Insurance
As a members of Mountaineering Ireland all members of Rathgormack Ramblers have Public Liability and Professional Indemnity Insurance in Ireland and Britain and within the European Union. This gives protection to members from being sued for negligence.
Members also have some Personal Accident Insurance - 75.000 euro to cover permanent loss of a limb or an eye, permanent loss of hearing in one ear, permanent loss of speech, permanent and total disablement from employment.
However, members do not have accident and emergency cover under our MI Insurance. We are advised to get this insurance if travelling on a walking holiday. The MI does organise a Travel and Activity Insurance through the British Mountaineering Council. At the very least members should carry their European Health Insurance Card with them on holiday within the E.U. This entitles you to free emergency and medical care in any public hospital in the E.U.