Armagh’s bilingual walking group Siúil are planning their next outing to the Mourne Mountains on Saturday 7 October. The group will take on the challenge of Slieve Binnian over a 7 mile trek, reaching a height of 2449 feet at the mountain’s summit, starting at 11am from the Carricklittle Car Park, which is located on the Head Road outside Annalong. The walk will be led by Cairde Teo Irish language officer, Seán Ó Maoilsté, who has just recently completed the challenge of reaching the highest point of Armagh’s 32 counties. Seán’s final county peak was on Errigal mountain in the Donegal Gaeltacht on Sunday 17 September and completed the challenge which began on Slieve Donard in County Down on 1 January 2017.
The walk which is suitable only for those with a good level of fitness and experience of hillwalking will follow the Mourne wall to the summit and along the summit ridge to the Back Castles, a group of impressive wrinkly tors, to the col between Slieve Binnian itself (Sliabh Binneáin meaning Mountain of the Little Peak) and Slieve Lamagan (Sliabh Lamhacán meaning Mountain of Crawling). The walk offers superb views across the Irish Sea to the Isle of Man and south to the Wicklow Hills. The return journey to the carpark takes in the Blue Lough and Annalong Wood.
The Siúil walking group recently completed an enjoyable two and a half hour walk on the Poets’ Trail loop around the foothills of south Armagh in the Mullaghbane area. The guided walk, which stopped off at the impressive Ballykeel Dolmen and the old Mullaghbane Folk Museum, was the latest in the group’s programme of monthly walks. Participants are also invited to join an Irish language walk being organised by national Irish language organisation, Oireachtas na Gaeilge, at Gosford Forest Park at 11am on Saturday 14 October. The Gosford walk will be less challenging and participants are expected from across Armagh, Down, Tyrone and Monaghan. If you would like to take part in the walk on Slieve Binnian or indeed in Gosford Forest Park, contact Seán on 028 3751 5229 or firstname.lastname@example.org to book a place. Please note that the walk on Slieve Binnian is dependant on weather conditions and pre-registration is essential.