Category: Tips & Advice

Autumn essentials for the Hillwalker

By October autumn is well and truly with us. In addition to the colder and more unsettled weather this brings to the hills, the available daylight hours reduce rapidly, especially when the clocks go back later in the month. This brings additional challenges to the hillwalker, and to meet those challenges it is important to carry a bit of extra gear to ensure our safety and comfort. Below is a list of the extra kit I would consider essential for an autumn or milder winter day on the hills. (Note Read more [...]

Fuelling your body for the mountains – Nutrition and Hydration

Our bodies need fuel to provide energy for our bodies to function; this energy is often quantified in terms of kilocalories, (Kcal). On average, a man will require 2800Kcal – 3000Kcal a day and a woman 2000Kcal – 2200Kcal. When we exercise this demand will increase and we might burn another 1000Kcal on a long day out in the mountains. These figures are somewhat generalised, our metabolism slows as we get older, using less energy, and there are always variations between individuals. To provide Read more [...]

Smart Phones No Match for the Traditional Map and Compass

"Don’t rely on smart phone apps for mountain safety’ is the message released today by the Irish Red Cross.  Aaron Byrne, Challenge Co-coordinator for the Irish Red Cross Sunrise Summit Challenge, said, “New technologies, such as smart phones with compasses, have certain advantages and uses - but use them as a backup.  A traditional compass won’t run out of battery and doesn’t need a signal!” Speaking ahead of the charity’s Sunrise Summit Challenge, an event in which participants Read more [...]

Walk Safely in the Irish hills and countryside

Mountaineering Ireland (MI) is delighted to unveil the new Walk Safely leaflet. Walk Safely is a resource for those who are new to walking in the Irish hills and countryside, be they tourists or friends, family and colleagues who want to get outdoors and benefit from the beauty of Ireland's countryside. Walk Safely highlights some tips which will give you confidence and make your experience more enjoyable. It also promotes responsible enjoyment of the Irish Countryside. Read more [...]

Night Time Navigation: Keeping Safe in the Hills. Tips and Hints from HilltopTreks

Terry Lambert of HillTopTreks shares some tips and advice for safely navigating the hills at night. Terry is a regular lead on evening and night time walks. Walking by night can be a great experience but will obviously provide its own particular navigational issues. After guiding many evening and night time walks I have gained some great insight into some of these issues. So for those of you who wish to gain some nocturnal exercise and enjoy some night walking here are a few tips. Preparation is very important to any walk and makes the whole experience more enjoyable but it’s even more important for evening walks. Bring a mobile phone with mountain rescue number on it (112). Injuries at night are a lot more dangerous due to the cooler temperatures and lack of proper vision. Being efficient at reading maps and the proper use of a compass is essential. Read more [...]

Real Mountain Skills

Using lessons learned from his experience of the mountains, Nathan Kingerlee of Outdoors Ireland shares some very useful tips and tricks to make life easier while out in this environment. While guiding some girls last weekend on Carrauntoohil, questions came up around tips and tricks to make life easier while in the mountains, especially big cold mountains like Kilimanjaro. When I think back to some of the hard lessons I’ve learnt and tricks I use, here’s some of them: If you’ve a choice between getting a backpack that’s a little too big, or a little too small, get one that’s a little too small. That way you’ll pack only what you really need and you’ll pack in a well organised fashion. No backpack is properly waterproof and backpack covers don’t work, so put a big lightweight dry-bag or a heavy duty plastic bin-bag inside your backpack, to keep your contents dry. Read more [...]

Joe’s Navigation Tips 1: Using your watch to find South

In the first of his regular tips, Joseph Quinn of explains how to use your watch to find South. Read more [...]

Walking tips for Autumn and Winter

With the clocks going back, your time on the hills may be restricted over the winter months. However by taking the correct precautions, you can still enjoy time out walking. Nathan Kingerlee of Outdoors Ireland goes through some of the issues to take into account for autumn and winter walking. Read more [...]