Can you conquer Slieve Donard the highest peak in Northern Ireland?
The highest mountain in Northern Ireland and the wider province of Ulster, with a height of 850 metres (2,790 ft). One of the Mourne Mountains, it is near the town of Newcastle on the eastern coast of County Down, overlooking the Irish Sea. It is also the 7th highest peak on the island of Ireland. The Mourne Wall – built in the early 20th century – runs up the western and southern slopes of the mountain, joining a small stone tower at the summit.
In Irish mythology the mountain was associated with the mythical figures Boirche and Slángha. It was later associated with, and named after, Saint Donard, who was said to have made the summit his hermitage. Up until the 1830s, people would climb the mountain as part of a yearly pilgrimage, which may have originally been a Lughnasadh ritual (a Gaelic festival marking the beginning of the harvest season).
The mountain is an easy climb although the path is very eroded at places. The most popular route begins at Slieve Donard Forest on the north side of the mountain and follows the Glen River and then the Mourne Wall to the summit. In recent years a stone path has been made on the steepest parts of the mountain. The summit has views of the coast, and as far afield as Belfast Lough, 30 miles north, Dublin Bay, 55 miles south, and the Isle of Man.
To complete the challenge you should:
- Take a photo before you start.
- Take a photo at the summit at 850m.
- Upload your favourite photos from the climb.
If you want you can also share your health stats for the day showing distance and times or your well deserved food & drink rewards at the end of the hike!
Once the summit has been ascended and the challenge completed you can buy the Slieve Donard TravelMedal.
Click on the medal to be redirected to our store or click here.
For information on the geography and history of Slieve Donard visit the wikipedia page. Those considering taking on the climb should visit Walk NI, which has all the information needed for taking on the challenge. This includes a description of the route, reviews and maps available to download.
Slieve Donard – Sea to Summit
For anyone considering this challenge, a good watch is Dean Reed’s VLOG of this hike to the peak. Dean’s videos are from his outdoor adventures in the hills of the Peak District, Yorkshire Dales, Lake District, Snowdonia, Scottish Highlands, The Cairngorms and beyond. In this video Dean heads to the Mountains of Mourne to climb Slieve Donard which is the Highest Peak in Northern Ireland. Dean said: “It was a great walk and we were treated to spectacular views from the top“.