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Colmcille Lovely Girls

Date: 9/03/13
Submitted by: gerard o' sullivan
Gartan was a pleasant surprise on Friday night - warm, comfortable and peaceful, loads of hot tea and biscuits, chat, plans being hatched and table-tennis as a distraction, it was already on my list of places to revisit before I saw the stunning lakeshore views on Saturday morning. The drive Friday had been disquieting with continuous drizzle - we decided that climbing was out and even scrambling doubtful.   Despite the assertions of the local climbers that there was a chance Cruit might have dried enough, I couldn’t face an hour’s journey for cold, wet rock. Ian Millers talk on sea stack climbing Friday night - with constant shots of sunshine and azure seas - reinforced the decision to wait till the sunny day
Nonetheless the rain had stopped Saturday and 3 of us (Alan, Maeve and I ) headed off for the North Ridge of Errigal followed by Tower Ridge - a fine and entertaining route with 2 proper rock pitches to it. We were deeply appreciative of Alan's knowledge of the area and the route. We were in cloud for most of the day but, more importantly, also out of the strong winds and got back to the car just as the rain started. We got back to find that the climbers had a successful morning before the rain came in- good news for George, Seamus and Anna who had driven from Ballymena/Belfast for the day. After an excellent dinner at the Colmcille centre Alan regaled us with tales of the development of Colmcille Climbers - and quite a few slides full of his lovely girls. The determined took advantage of the minibus laid on to the village pub but I had signed up for an early morning workshop so headed for tea, book and bed.
Sunday was a quieter day  - many folk had either left or headed off for a mornings walk to Glenveagh and back. Maeve, Eoin and I showed up for Alan Richardson's informative and intensive session on belay technique, showing us several tips and tricks. After a hearty lunch we headed back east with the snow gusting in after the Glen Shane pass.

Photo of Route