Last weekend marked the 18th Galtee Challenge walk, a walk that traverses the Galtee Mountains from Cahir, Co. Tipperary to Anglesborough, Co. Limerick, taking in the highest peaks of the range, including Galtymore. Galtybeag, Greenane, Farbrega and Lyracapull among many other peaks. This challenge walk was initiated in 2005 by Pat and Breda Ryan, with only Pat Ryan and Thos O'Neill holding the accolade of completing each Challenge since then, followed closely by Sheila Lenihan, who has completed it 17 times! The hike covers 31 km with 1700 m of climbing involved and is considered to be one of the best challenge walks in Ireland.
After a 2-year break, due to the Covid-19 restrictions, the Galtee Walking Club warmly welcomed 130 participants from all over Ireland to their treasured Galtee slopes for what was a very challenging day in the hills, made worse by the extreme wind on Galtymore and the heavy rain that spread from the west as the day went on. This year 17 Galtee club members completed the Challenge, with 4 taking it on for the first time. The club is indebted to everyone who helped to make this event such a success but would like to offer a special thanks to the Hillwalking Radio Group for providing invaluable VHF radio communications, to Aidan and Hilary Dilworth for the registration and help in the hall in Anglesborough, Martina Lonergan and Joe O'Brien for the delicious cakes and scones, Anne O'Donnell, Breda Ryan and Doreen Hennessy for managing the catering in the hall, Thos O'Neill and Pat Ryan for doing the job of sweepers on the route, Anne O'Donnell, Eoin Lonergan, Tom Lyons, James Bourke and John Lonergan for their help on the mountain - bringing people to safety, answering any queries and opening fences, Pat Riggs for the certs, the local farmer for use of his field for parking, Goretti Campbell, Pat Kinane and all the club members to turned up to welcome participants back and the community of Anglesborough for facilitating a large crowd in their community.
The Galtee walking club was founded in 2003 and holds walks at all levels, mainly in the Galtees, Knockmealdown and Comeragh mountain ranges. The walks take place on Sundays, with additional midweek walks throughout the summer, as well as walks in further away mountain ranges such as in Kerry, Wicklow and Sligo. Anyone is welcome to try out up to 3 walks before becoming a member. If you'd like more information take a look at www.galteewalkingclub.ie or feel free to e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or to make contact through any of our social media channels.