On the first weekend of this month Andrea and I headed to Dublin for Andrea's Grandma's 90th Birthday.
This was as quiet and sedate an affair as would be expected of any large Irish family gathering in Dublin! We had a warm up BBQ on the Saturday and the real deal on the Sunday. I got to meet a fair chunk of the McDonough clan. Some had come from as far away as Spain.
I was made to feel incredibly welcome and had a fabulous time.
Triple Peaks Challenge - United Kingdom
Ever contemplated climbing the highest peaks in each of Scotland, England and Wales in 24 hours (including the time it takes to drive between them all)? Don't.
One the weekend of the 24th and 25th of July myself and 10 others from work not only contemplated, but actually attempted, the Triple Peaks Challenge.
We drove half way up to Scotland on the Friday night in our mini-van, and completed the journey the next morning.
At 4pm sharp we began from the carpark at the bottom of Ben Nevis (Scotland) - the highest of the three peaks at 1344m (4409ft). Ben Nevis involves 1325m (4347ft) of climbing, the route difficulty is regarded as intermediate to strenuous and the distance from the start to the summit is approximately 7.6km (4.75 miles). We completed this leg in just over 4 hours.
Next was the drive back down to the Lake District. We arrived at the carpark below Scafell Pike just before 3am and started climbing as soon as we had managed to shoehorn ourselves out of the van.
Scafell Pike (England) is 977m (3206ft) high, and involves 913m (2995ft) of near-vertical climbing from the carpark - luckily this bit was in the dark. The route difficulty is regarded as intermediate to strenuous and the distance from the start to the summit is approximately 4km (2.5 miles). We were back at the van just before 7am.
Then we had another wee drive, this time down to Mount Snowdon in North Wales. We arrived at the Pen-Y-Pass carpark just before midday with four hours left to do the challenge in.
Mount Snowdon is 1085m (3560ft) high, and involves 725m (2381ft) of climbing from the Pen-Y-Pass starting point. The route difficulty is regarded as intermediate and the distance from the start to the summit is approximately 6.4km (4 miles). We did it in 3½ hours.
Of the 11 that started, 9 finished. We had walked 18km and climbed 2963m. My total time from the carpark at Ben Nevis to the carpark at Snowdon was 23 hours and 31 minutes, but several of the guys with us got below 23 hours!
I have only just learnt to walk again!
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