“Inaction weighs heavy on the shoulders of restless men and women.”
There’s an innate decency in every person that has supported the Fei Sheehy Challenge. The walkers, those that registered but couldn’t make it, the crew on the ground, the product/prize sponsors, those that donated and sponsored walkers, and everyone else who provided assistance in making the event happen. It’s a great testament to the Titans and Titanides of the hillwalking community.
At the end of the day, it’s a fundraiser and we’re doing it for someone else.
I could write paragraphs on the weather over the three days, but we defied it without incident and that’s what matters.
What I will say is that, the forecast was ‘Monsoonish’. Friday granted us an armada of cloud with the odd ‘cannon’ fire of rain but all agreed that it could have been worse. Saturday was a day that you’d find in an Antarctic explorers log book and it was ferociously difficult to plant the toes of the rear foot in front of the advanced heels on Galtybeg. Sunday was a ‘pleasant’ day, considering what went before.
It really was a baptism of fire for those that were new to the event and the toughest year yet for the regulars. Everyone had the fitness levels and navigational ability to get the job done safely. The weather dictated that walking in a group was logical and who better to follow on the Comeragh’s than a man that’s on first name terms with all the peat hags.
The Club challenge trophy was retained by Peaks Mountaineering Club Clonmel but I’ve seen a FB post where a firm gauntlet has been thrown down by another club to stop the treble. Could the All-Ireland Hillwalking Club title be heading to Dublin? Could they both be ambushed by another club?
The energy and chat in Ballyporeen, after three tough days, was something to behold. You’d think that folk would be anxious to get away after getting drowned on the mountains, but no.
What better way to end the event than to have a feast of sandwiches, bracks, tarts, queen cakes, jam & cream sponge, coffee cake, bowls of chocolate ( all washed down with tea or coffee ) and a chat about this challenge and what one they’re doing next. There’s a common bond amongst all these people; it’s an absolute love of hillwalking.
Pat Beardmore, Pavel Madar Bodi, David Browne, Patrick Dennis, Kevin Finn, Ian Fitzgerald, Steven Forde, Sean Freeman, Patrick Harraghy, Michael Kearney, Justin Kelleher, David Kiely, Noreen McCarthy, Gerry McVeigh, Michael Moroney, Josephine O’Brien, Mary O’Connell, Bridie O’Connor, Ronan O’Connor, Kevin O’Donnell, Pat O’Loan, Muiris O’Suilleabhain, Bart O’Sullivan, Ken Quinlivan, Michael Rea, Billy Sheehan, Gerard Sheehy and Mark Vesey.
Sign-In/Sign-Out, Stand-By and Catering
Margo, Martha, Tom, Pat, Nuala, Eimear, Kate.
Awards Ceremony Presenter
14 did 3 days
5 did 2 days
9 did 1 day.
10 Participants were new to the event
6 did 3 days
1 did 2 days
3 did 1 day.
Peaks Mountaineering Club had 3 that did 3 days, 2 that did 2 days and 2 that did 1 day.
2 participants did the treble in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
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