Mourne Mountains View From South Stack

by Jenny

Above South Stack we saw the Mourne Mountains popping up above the horizon, silhouetted against a tangerine sky with tufts of grey cloud.

It was a magical moment to see the granite Mountains of Mourne (or as the Irish call them, Na Beanna Boirche) all the distance away in County Down, Northern Ireland.

Actually, a friend who was with me reckoned we actually saw Slieve Donard, which he said is around 850 metres high and the highest of the various slieves in the Mourne range.

The Mourne Mountains he says are part of a AONB or Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

But it was such a still evening, apart from the distant sounds of the puffins which gather in large numbers down the cliff face opposite South Stack at this time of year (mid May to mid June).

Apparently it is quite normal to be able to see the Isle of Man from the slopes above South Stack, being north of Anglesey.

You just look to the northern horizon and there you can see Snaefell and the rest of the island running down towards Port St Mary in the south.

In the foreground and to the north east is the Skerries Rock and Lighthouse and Carmel Head.

And as we swung our view westwards, again seeing Slieve Donard as the beautiful sky went through the spectrum of colours, we saw the Wicklow mountains south of Dublin Bay.

These mountains are also easier to see than their cousins, the Mournes, further morth.

Turning further south and to the east we could see the Lleyn peninsula, now we have reached Wales. And right at the end was a little blob, and this according to my friend is Bardsey Island (or Ynys Enlli.)

To complete the 360 view we turned further east and there before our eyes were the magnificent Snowdon Mountains.

We have climbed these mountains before, and on the radio driving back in the car, we heard that the new cafe on top of Snowdon is about to be opened by the First Minister of Wales, Rhodri Morgan.

I wonder if they could see Slieve Donard and the rest of the Mourne mountains from there. At least they have the advantage of a much greater altitude.

Well,we will have to go over there for a cup of chocolate and see this new cafe, which uses the local slate from Blaenau Ffestiniog, so I understand.

Thank you Slieve Donard for popping up on the evening horizon as we walked above South Stack toward the top of Holyhead Mountain.

Thoroughly recommended for those who love walking, fine sunsets and mountain and coastal views.

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