Glendalough Days

Last weekend I headed down to a beautiful valley in the Republic of Ireland called Glendalough, outside of a town called Wicklow. This is the first year in awhile that they’ve been able to do this particular trip as people are starting to gear up for finals and are experiencing a lack of mountaineering hustle.

And yet, here we are!

We stayed in an Irish Mountaineering Club cottage which was pretty cozy, in the grand scheme of things! We all piled our sleeping bags and assorted gear in and and got ready to explore the beautiful places around us.

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Day one and day two involved a lot of bouldering, which was awesome! We climbed a few rocks around an old mining village and while the weather was quite cold, it wasn’t raining and we had a great time.

Crossing rivers with bouldering mats can be precarious

Crossing rivers with bouldering mats can be precarious

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Ancient monastic tower in Glendalough valley.

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Off roading (even though there was a perfectly good trail…)

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Old mining village ruins

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Climb the things!

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My favorite German being goofy

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That evening saw a typical mountaineering level of shenanigans including making Christmas tree angels out of beer cans, chopping a beer in half with an ax, and attempting to boulder using a folding chair and a table.

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Getting yourself around a table without touching the ground… Not as easy as you’d think!

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Valiant efforts were made by all to squeeze themselves through folding chairs.

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And some of us got stuck

Yeah. After a long day of hiking, climbing and scrambling we get back and think, ‘what else can we climb around here?

Sunday was very cold but sunny, and we only made it to a couple bouldering spots before the general freezy-ness of everything killed whatever motivation we had left to continue. Thankfully 10 minute after we quit it started raining- good timing!

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Don’t let the blue sky deceive you- it was COLD.

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‘Leave me. The mats have accepted me as one of their own. If I leave now I’ll lose their trust.’

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Beautiful day in Wicklow Gap.

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This is solidly the only thing most of us climbed that day.

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Cuddle puddle- because what’s a mountaineering trip without a bit of platonic snuggling for warmth?

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The trip back to Belfast involved good conversation, dinner with the nicest chip shop owner ever, and a few snow flurries along the way. Great trip!

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