Kilimanjaro Training in the Galtees
By Calog Healy
Sunday morning, Niall Harty, Cian O’Shaughnessy, Henry Healy, Jeffrey Blake and me, Calog Healy met at the bottom of the Galtee mountains on the Tipperary/Cork border in Rossadrehid. Alexa Blake, Jeffrey’s mum was nice enough to give us a lift there.
When we arrived, Cal Healy senior (my father) and Marie Healy (Henry’s Mother) were already there. We started by putting on our climbing gear. It was recommended that we all wear proper climbing boots and a rainproof jacket. Most of us wore 3 layers as it was a cold day. The walk began at quarter past ten.
The first mountain we ascended was called Clogheen. The weather was unpredictable all day. The weather was good at first but about halfway up it began lashing rain just as it began to get steep. The group was small so we moved at a very fast pace with the guide, as a result some people began to find it tough. Once we made it to the top we stopped and waited for the rest of the group to catch up. We each drank a bottle of water and ate a snack. After ten minutes the rest the group was together and we started climbing down the first mountain.
Once in the valley below the clouds had cleared and we could see Galtee Beag in front of us. We got a look at it for a few minutes before the fog came down and we realised that this was going to be the most difficult one of all three climbs.
It began to hail just as we started climbing again and the fog was so thick that the guides asked us to make sure the we all knew where the person in front and behind us was. There were a few experienced walkers on the climb with us who gave us tips about climbing. After our break at the top, Henry, Niall, Jeffrey and I got a photo with the cross.
Galtee Mor although being the largest mountain was not the most strenuous as Galtee Mor and Galtee Beag are attached and we didn’t have to walk down again. Due to the weather improving this was the most scenic climb and we enjoyed the view from the top.
On the last leg of the walk a girl fell and injured her leg after tripping over a rock. The mountain rescue was called and we continued to the car park. At the end of the day we had been climbing for six hours and we were happy to be back at the car.
A big thank you to Alexa Blake for providing a lift in the morning, Marie Healy and Cal Healy for climbing with us and buying us food afterwards.