Location: Sliabh Riadh
Wednesday 19th August, 2020
A picnic can take place anywhere – at a roadside picnic bench, in your back garden, or indeed even inside your house on the sitting room floor! But a picnic is undoubtedly very special when it takes place with a scenic backdrop.
The top of Sliabh Riadh, Co. Limerick, is one such beauty spot, where a hot cup of tea tastes all the nicer because you are drinking it while looking over the green fields and distant mountains of three counties.
This is a picnic spot that requires you to work hard before enjoying the delicacies you have packed for lunch. It is the highest point on the mountain of Slieve Riadh, and a steep climb is required of you in order to get there. You’ll need to bring a rucksack, not a heavy picnic basket. I can tell you this from experience as Dave and I lugged a big fancy picnic basket up there. We started off with great enthusiasm, but we ended up having to stop half way to eat and drink some of the contents of the basket, to try and lighten the load!
The walk begins from the picturesque village of Glenbrohane. If you’re driving, park your car outside the church. Put on your boots, fill your rucksack with treats and flasks, and cross over to the small road leading up to the hill. As you climb it you’ll see some fantastic views south to Cork, but carry on past the farm houses, the barking dogs and up around the corner until you see a wooden stile on the right hand side. This is the entrance onto the mountain.
The first 20 minutes or so are pretty tough as it’s a narrow track, and very steep. Keep with it though and before too long, you will find yourself on a well maintained forestry road. Once the first part is done, the rest of the ascent is relatively easy, and the incline is gradual. You can view the route here:
Your destination will come into sight after you have passed very close to some wind turbines, hearing that strange whirring sound. The picnic spot is behind a mobile phone mast (walk on past and you will see the steps to the left of the enclosure bringing you higher).
When you get there, drink in the gorgeous views of Tipperary, Limerick and Cork. Some even say that you can see as far as Co. Kerry on a good day! Unpack your flask and lunchbox and savour every mouthful! If you have time and light, there’s a small tin box hidden away under a rock somewhere at the top where you can sign your name and pen a few thoughts about your walk.
The trip up will take up to an hour depending on how heavily laden you are and how quickly you want to go. On midsummer and midwinter local groups organise big group walks up to the summit, with refreshments in the community hall afterwards – remember to check the Glenbrohane Community Page for more information, and also maybe contact them if you want advice regarding the conditions up there when you’re thinking of going.
Remember to collect your waste and leave no trace!
galtees Glenbrohane hike Mountain view vista