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Ireland Snow Conditions

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Unfortunately the lack of any serious elevation and our maritime climate means we don't get much snow in Ireland. In saying that, the odd cold winter (2010) does deliver the goods. My farm is at 40m amsl and I have managed to ski here a few years. My preferred spot is Slieveanorra, a 500m hill in the Antrim Plateau which has good road access and I can normally get up there a few times a winter for some skiing/ sledging with the kids.

First chill of winter this evening and we may get a light sprinkling over the tops of the Sperrins.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
This may be the most optimistic thread on snowheads, but I nonetheless await with bated breath!

I did sledge down Djouce one year, it was great craic and there was proper skiing to be done for sure, but that was like, maybe one in 6 in terms of the amount of snow?

Very tempted to pick up a pair of cheap second hand touring skis for the fun just in case

Hoping to cycle the Sperrins at some point I believe they're pretty and underrated
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@8611, Yes, it is optimistic, but experience has shown me if you know where to look, you can find (deep) snow in most winters. 2009/2010 was amazing with probably 30 days of snow on my farm. With no Alpine skiing this winter I want to make the most of what is on my doorstep, even if it means hiking in!

Yes, the Sperrins are beautiful.
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I was up the Mournes one year with snow too and it was class, I think there's videos of lads skiing Donard on Youtube. Seriously steep there so if there was enough snow it could be pretty dramatic

Edit: there are loads - google skiing mournes, and they look good


http://youtube.com/v/AFWS3R1ZFlw
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
As good as anywhere with that light
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That doggy loved it too Madeye-Smiley
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@8611, Great video. Took a drive through the Sperrins yesterday and walked to the summit of Mullaghcarn (541m). 2 C at the top, but not even a dusting yet.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Well you've got me thinking and I'm now in process of sourcing a cheap pair of second hand skis so update if any developments. No point holding our breath unfortunately.
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Skiing with dogs - not without it's issues !

I'd love to ski the Irish back country, but may have to make do with the Shropshire Hills instead. Fingers crossed.
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@8611, great video. I've skied Dublin/Wicklow mountains in right conditions. Kippure, the highest point in Co Dublin at 750m can have snow loaded in gullies although a bit of a hike in. Tonlagee on the Wicklow Gap near Glendalough in Co Wicklow is much more accessible with road to about 450m that is normally ploughed and hill to over 800m. Have had some decent runs on steeper west side of this hill the last few snowy periods.
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Deadly. There's an amazing video of some really good powder skiing somewhere near Luggala on line too.

Can I ask, do you use skins or just hike up, and if you hike do you do it in ski boots or hiking boots and carry the skis? I assume the return is very small for the amount of effort of climbing, but probably still worth it for the novelty / fitness?
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Brilliant!
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
...and no 14 day quaranteen coming back to UK. Toofy Grin
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
-1C on the North Coast this morning. I can see a dusting of snow on the Northern Sperrins above 300m (ish).
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Presume it needs a bit more to be viable? Although more due today I think. Still haven't managed to source skis.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Fabulous, one happy dog too
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Here's another vid from the same account, gets really good from around half way through. The couloir at the end is class!


http://youtube.com/v/Ds6BFqXwqVU
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@8611, That is class!!
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Yeah I think if I'd skied that with a guide in the Alps at a net cost of about a grand for the trip I'd have been a very happy man, the thought of doing it self supported from home soil would be amazing

Carrantoohill looking white:-

https://twitter.com/KerryClimbing

From recollection its quite rocky and windy there so would need a lot of snow to ski it I think. On the list though.

Edit: for completeness was up Wicklow mountains Sunday night and no sign of snow, that was from top of Prince William's seat looking over towards (I think) Djouce - this despite media reports of heavy snow at Sally Gap, but maybe there was some up there I couldn't see
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Excellent
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Going to follow this with interest. Wicklow resident here, recently acquired a snowboard and boots and took a few lessons in Kilternan after many years of wanting to go. Went once man years ago in france, so have a little bit of experience. Holiday to Finland got canned after christmas. No stranger to the hills, bike and run a lot so a hike and board for a day would be great.

Any tips on where to look out for throw them up here, I've been eyeing up my neighbours field, which would be nice with a good covering of snow for some short mellow turn practice!
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@oink, I read online that the Shay Elliot memorial above Glenmalure is supposed to be very good:-

https://outsider.ie/ireland/snowy-activities-ireland/

Hoping to cycle that bit of the Wicklow Way soon to get more familiar with it, been out once or twice on the road bike only

There is also a superb video online of lads skiing somewhere around Luggala, described as Sally Gap Road, I know that area well but can't figure out where this video was shot:-


http://youtube.com/v/27EV7nsiklg

My main interest is in what road will be accessible to me in a non 4 x 4. Can't see anyone getting up to Luggala without a 4 x 4 or a quad. Maybe Glenmalure road would be ok? I'm thinking of buying chains.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@8611 yep, i was just googling snow chains and winter tyres there. I'll get some chains ordered and keep the fingers crossed.
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@8611, Follow Hiking Ireland on Facebooks, some great reports of early snow. Nothing really skiable yet but looks pretty. I've been on to Braemar Mountain Sports in Scotland. £1200 for full kit, touring boots, skis, bindings and skins, but also usable on piste, so considering the "investment"
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Yeah I've been seeing what I can pick up second hand, touring kit seems expensive alright
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Awesome thread. Similar climate to what we get in South Wales. You would surely get 10-20 days of snow cover in the Wicklow mountains most years?

Living in Pembrokeshire, I've been tempted to get the ferry across sometimes snowHead
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@Mouse555, I live on the North Coast at 30m amsl, so we are not a very snowy place, but it has been interesting with the advent of social media to see how much snow Ireland does actually get. Lots of different Facebook pages with live updates. It has shown me that if you are prepared to explore, you will nearly always find snow if you know where to look. I'm not the Wicklow area, but I would guess your prediction is close enough. The North Antrim Hills and Sperrins probably get something similar on their summits and sheltered North facing gullies.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Mouse555 wrote:
You would surely get 10-20 days of snow cover in the Wicklow mountains most years?



I'd say that's probably about right, but have to confess I don't really know. If you see snow on mountains in Ireland its kind of unusual, like you'd look at it driving by. If you encountered it on a hike you'd be sending pictures to your mates. Its rare enough there's been decent snowfall to low levels in Ireland, though I think it was last year I could probably have skied into Dublin City Centre. That shut the whole country down for a few days!

I think in general the mountains are a small bit lower then the UK, our highest is 1034m, and there's only 5 over 900m. That probably has in impact on how much realistic skiing there is, even if there is snow?

The other thing I wonder is does the Gulf Stream heat us a small bit more than say Wales. Might be a question for the weather thread. Certainly from the threads on here there seems to be more of a culture of skiing in the UK, although that may be more a reflection of population and demographics. Obviously Scotland quite a bit further north too.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Wet and windy here on the N Coast, but hoping for that temp drop later. We should see a bit of cover above 300m on our Northern Hills. Fingers crossed.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Well, the snow gods played ball. We had heavy rain here on the coast all night, but headed for the N Antrim hills this morning an weren't disappointed. Snow line around 100m, with a decent covering above 250m. Took the kids and sledge and hiked up to the summit of Slieveanorra (508m). Did 2 laps down to the road at around 300m so clocked up a massive 400m of vertical! Snow was about 10cm deep on average, but some nice deep drifts near the summit. In all a good day out.
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Excellent
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Quote:
Took the kids and sledge and hiked up to the summit of Slieveanorra (508m). Did 2 laps down to the road at around 300m so clocked up a massive 400m of vertical!
You didn't take the skis (or board) then johnboy? Would there have been enough white stuff for a few turns? Puzzled
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@mountainaddict, yeah, took an old pair of skis and carried them up. Probably around 10cm on average, but it's blanket bog rather than grass so only option was to ski down forestry track and heard the odd stone!
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@johnboy, that's superb, fair play. I can't believe you've that much snow at 100m, is that usual? Saw some frosting at the top of Kippure in Dublin mountains (from about 500m) on the 23rd, hopefully more today, tonight and tomorrow. Hope to head up tomorrow for a look and will report back, will be in Connemara later this week too so hopefully some white there.

Have bought second hand skis so just have to pick them up and get them drilled now. Not so easy in a lockdown.
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@8611,

I live on the coast (3 miles from Portrush) and we rarely get snow. 10 miles inland had snow lying, probably around 100m or less. Slieveanorra is a modest hill/ mountain at 508m, but seems to catch and hold snow well. Good road access too takes you to above 300m. That's the second time Slieveanorra (Orra) has had a decent fall this Devember.
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@8611, Are you getting touring bindings? I just had a standard pair and carried them up.
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No I couldn't find anything with touring bindings for sale in Ireland and second hand touring bindings on ebay were quite expensive. But I asked a chap who's done a fair bit of Scottish touring and he said I'd be fine to hike up and ski down unless in deep powder. Obviously I'd prefer touring, you could in effect go for a hike on skis, but I'm reluctant to throw like 400 euro at something that is really a punt. I don't mind a bit of exercise either.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@8611,

I was the same. Have some old skis and boots. Looked at a new touring set up and it was £1200.00 which is too hard to justify in our climate!
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Plus the fear would be we'd wreck them on 3 inches of snow. Will try touring on a ski trip and see how viable it is. Keep us posted re your exploits.
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Lucky enough to be in Connemara at the moment. Only really a frosting on the tops of the 12 bens and mamturks. Sheefry hills look to have more.

From looking at hiking ireland facebook page donegal, lugnaquilla, mount leinster and comeraghs all look to be skiable?
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