Munster SUAS 2001


Comeraghs Suas Adventure
The Comeragh Mountains - 5 - 7 October 2001

Route Outline

Map: Ordnance Survey Discovery Series 1:50,000 Sheet 75

How to get there
From Clonmel, take the R671 following signposts for Dungarvan/Nire Valley Scenic Drive. Turn left at Melody's Pub in Ballymacarberry after around 9.5 miles, following signposts for Hanora's Cottage. At Hanora's Cottage, continue up past the church on your left. Take care as the road narrows considerably and the surface is uneven.

Follow this road to the Nire Valley car park at grid reference S 277 128. This is our start and finish point for the weekend.

You should check in at the car park between 20.00 hours and 22.30 hours. Teams arriving after this time should make their own way to base camp and check in in the morning. If you are leaving your car in the car park for the weekend, please park in such a way that we can park as many cars as possible here. Owners park their cars at their own risk.

Ensure your patrol checks in and that your equipment is checked by staff before going into the hills. Your patrol will be assigned a tag, which you must have with you at all times over the weekend.

Friday Night
Car park 277 128 to Base Camp 277 114
Leave the car park and follow the road back to the track at 272 130. Make sure to leave the gate as you find it. Follow the track downhill and cross the bridge at 272 125. Turn right after around 300m and cross the river again - this time using the stepping stones at 271 124. Take care not to get your feet wet at this early stage!

Take the left fork in the track and follow it to its end at 272 120. Leave the gate as you find it and take a bearing to base camp at 277 114, just above spot height 305. Check in with the staff here before settling down for the night.

Saturday Hike
Base Camp 277 114 to 550m contour checkpoint, 275 101
Check out from base camp will be at 9.00am. The route will be circular with patrols carrying full packs all day, so you should get up early and make sure everyone has a good breakfast.

Gain the spur gradually for about 1.4 km, aiming to hit the first checkpoint on the broad ridge at 275 101.

Checkpoint to Spot Height 711, 281 095
Use a dog-leg on this part of the route, as a direct bearing will take you into the cliffs overlooking Coumfea. Instead you should take a bearing to the top of the cliffs at 278 097. Then adjust your bearing to take you to the checkpoint on the spot height at 281 095.

The cliffs will be particularly dangerous in bad weather, so pay attention to your bearing and pace the distance if required. As always, pay attention to your map for slope changes, etc and make sure they match your surroundings.

Spot Height 711 to Spot Height 717, 291 092.
This leg involves another dog-leg to avoid wandering too close to the cliffs, where a gust of wind could take you over. Take a bearing into the broad col at 286 091. The weather may be bad on the event and the ground here is featureless so again be aware of your bearing and pace the distance required. A second bearing from the col will take you to spot height 717.

Spot Height 717 to Spot Height 744, 295 098
Follow your bearing across the broad plain, once again taking care not to venture too close to the cliff edge. Note the peat hags that are forming even this high up, indicating soil erosion occurring. If the weather is fine, you will be able to enjoy the view down to Coumfea.

Spot Height 744 to Spot Height 730, 296 107
This is a straightforward leg, following a bearing for around 900m. However, the ground here is flat and featureless, so be sure to navigate carefully and be aware of your location on your map.

Spot Height 730 to Col, 300 108
Take a bearing from spot height 730 and use pacing to hit the checkpoint in the centre of the broad col at 300 108.

Col to Spot Height 751, 306 112
Ascend from the col, using the river as a handrail some of the way to spot height 751. See if you can also find spot height 750, which is only one metre lower on the broad top.

Time dependent, there will be an option for some patrols to continue on to spot height 792, which is actually Comeragh Mountain and the highest point in the range.
From spot height 751, take a bearing to 743 at 314 112. From there take a bearing to spot height 792 at 318 105, ascending around 50 metres. Retrace your steps to 751.

Spot Height 751 to Plateau, 299 119
Descend to the plateau on the spur around the 600 metre contour line. Take care not to veer off to the left of the spur into the steep ground overlooking Spillogue Loughs.

Plateau to High Camp, Spillogue Loughs, 296 115
Take care on the descent as this is the time when people are tired and concentration is poor. Check in with the staff at high camp, before pitching your tents and starting your dinner.

Sunday Hike

High Camp to kink in river, 299 123
Leave High Camp, ensuring that no rubbish has been left anywhere.
Contour around the spur to the definite kink in the Coumlara River at 299 123.

River to Spot Height 466 (The Gap), 302 134
Cross the river and follow over open ground to the spot height in the col.

Spot Height 466 to Standing Stone, 281 128
Follow the track to the gate and then follow bearing of 183 degrees to the standing stone. Take care crossing the fence.

Standing Stone to Finish, Nire Valley Car Park, 277 128
Follow the track from the standing stone, above the farmhouse and onto the road. The finish point is at the car park, up the hill at 277 128.

Check in with the staff here. Congratulations on completing the Comeragh's Suas event - hopefully we'll see you on other events in the future!