This morning I went back to the furthest reaches of the Black Valley to experience once again the wonderful and remote Lough Duff Horseshoe.Getting to the start of the route is a bit of an adventure in itself as you have to drive through the Gap of Dunloe before dropping down to the base of the valley and then another several miles on the narrow winding road along past the lakes until you cross over the river. Here there is a small place to park a few cars. It is a lovely spot in the shadow to the Reeks and the imposing east face of Broaghnabinnea looms ahead.
This is no easy start to the day as I set off up the track towards the old house before taking a direct line straight up the face. Normally I go up the gully in the middle but since it had been stormy last night (it was still pretty windy) and had rained heavily I opted to stay to the left and avoid a soaking. A steep 350 metres certainly gets the heart pumping and I wasn't sorry to reach the easier ground at the top. Not that the hard work was over as there is another 250 metres of climbing to reach the broad flat summit of Broaghnabinnea at 745 metres. The Reeks were shrouded in mist down to 800 metres but I was in the clear and the views were atmospheric and wonderful. The wind was buffeting but manageable and it was mostly dry. Some rain scudded around but it only added to the exhilaration of the day.
|Heading for the summit|
|In the heart of Iveragh|
|Got to have a little rain for the rainbows|