Archives for posts with tag: Comeraghs

Over the weekend, Deirdre, Mark, Brendan and I took a walk in the Comeraghs: starting in the Nire Valley, crossing over to the Gap, making our way around to the Western Lakes, then climbing up to a small cairn on the plateau.

We traversed the boggy plateau, briefly encountering a “spot of bother”, when one of our group (who shall remain nameless) began to sink into the mud, saving himself using a technique with two poles that I will never forget.

After ploughing waist-deep through boggy streams and navigating through a cloudy and featureless landscape, we came to a point that we expected would lead us down the mountain. Instead of a gradual descent, however, we encountered a sheer cliff-edge. We had walked slightly further west than we had intended. We spent the next hour handrailing the cliffs until we finally discovered a safe exit from the plateau.

Just as we were going down, the cloud lifted, and we were able to make out a spectacular panorama. The walk back to the cars was almost magical, with the setting sun illuminating the valley in orange, yellow and emerald green.

It was a challenging, fun-filled, haphazard walk that we’ll remember for a long time.

I managed to go on a fantastic walk up the Nire Valley in west Waterford this Sunday. While most people were enjoying a relatively dry morning, we decided to seek a place of near constant rain and mist. 

The walk took us from the car park over an improvised bridge and up into the mountains via a long gentle ridge on the western side of the valley. Once we reached the Comeragh plateau, we passed down a boggy valley leading (unexpectedly) to the top of the Mahon Falls. From there we headed towards The Gap and back to the car park. All in all, the walk lasted 6 hours.  

The heather is in full bloom at the moment. Pictured against the deep greens of a wet Irish summer it’s nothing short of spectacular. 

And now, a bonus: a quick time-lapse video featuring some pretty nifty high-speed sheep..

Last Sunday, I journeyed with a few like-minded souls to Coumshingaun in the Comeragh Mountains in Co. Waterford. The centrepiece is a corrie lake caused by glaciation during the last Ice Age. The corrie has a classic “armchair” shape: two gently ascending narrow ridges with precipitous drops on all three sides.

Overlooking the corrie

The journey upwards was quite difficult, compared to Galteemore. It’s a more challenging ascent due to the preponderance of rock outcrops and winding, up/down paths.

A rock outcrop

It took us about 2 hours to reach the top. Here’s a view of the ridge by which we ascended.

Our path upwards

The “summit” is pretty flat, owing to the fact that the Comeraghs are about 350 million years old. Significant weathering, not to mention a few Ice Ages thrown in for good measure, have reduced the mountains to a uniform boggy plateau around 700 metres high.

At the top

Coumshingaun lake is impressive – a mile long, dark, mysterious, fed by gently gurgling waterfalls. Strewn around it are tons of piled up debris from ancient landslides.


We completed the “armchair” circuit in good time, returning to the car park in just over four hours. Just the antidote for those Monday morning blues!

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