Carrauntoohil: Highest Point on the Emerald Isle


Blessed with an uncommonly perfect weather day, I had the pleasure and privilege of summiting Carrauntoohil, the centerpiece of the MacGillicuddy’s Reeks, and at 3,400 feet elevation, the highest peak in Ireland.

I chose to approach the summit (right) by way of the “tourist route” up the infamous Devil’s Ladder (the boulder-strewn gully where the shadow meets the sun on the left).
On the Devil’s Ladder, looking North towards Hag’s Glen.
For a few moments, the highest man in Ireland!
Looking South over the Iveragh Peninsula.
A gift for… and a toast to… my dear friend and National Treasure of Ireland Agnes O’Sullivan!
Giving thanks before enjoying Agnes’s brown bread.
Although not technical, the most vertical section of the climb is not the called the Devil’s Ladder for nothing. It is quite treacherous, especially going back down… beyond slippery, prone to rock slides, and full of diabolical blind steps and frustrating dead ends.
And just to ensure that I left more humble than I arrived, the mountain gave me a lovely puncture wound on the way down as a going-away present…

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