Lough Dan to Iron Bridge - 36km

 
 
Hike Description:
 
At a little under 36km, this is the second longest hike of the challange.
At a steady pace, this hike will take 11 to 12 hours to complete.
 
Starting at Oldbridge, 500m South of Lough Dan Campsite, the route follows the road for just over 2km before beginning the ascent towards Paddock Hill (T148,983). From Paddock Hill the route follows the well defined path all the way to the Glendalough Visitor Centre.
 
At 9km, the visitor centre marks the quarter way point in this hike. It only gets a mention because Glendalough is so beautiful that you could spend longer here than planned. But remember, still 26km to go from here but, hopefully, you've done that bit before.
 
From the visitor centre, the route takes you through the graveyard and alone the banks of the lower lake until you reach the upper lake and car-park. 
 
Leaving the upper car park, there is a steady climb on a well worn path towards the waterall and on to the top at T111,949.
 
Here you continue along the forest path to the high point of the hike at T086,944 before beginning your descent. The path takes a sharp turn to the left and at points, you can see the sharp fall to the road below.
 
The path from Drumgoff bridge towards Slieve Maan meanders through the forest and is for most of the time on Maan, little more than a worn grass path. Before long though, you're on your way back up again as the path rises towards Carrickashane at T078,860
The summit itself is hard to reach as the last 60-70 meters is through dense, relatively young conifers with lots of low, pointy branches.
 
Before leaving Carrickashane be sure to spot Lugnaquilla - this is at a bearing of 323 degrees.
 
As you start your descent, the path is little more than a gravel trail but rejoins the road at T085,852 where you turn right and end your journey at the bridge over the River Ow.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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18th Meath Scout Group,
21 Jun 2010, 04:22
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