It was back in February, on a cold evening,
Micky had arrived at the hub in Mallusk and I could tell he wasn’t
himself. When I questioned him, it
transpired that he was planning to do the Denis Rankin Round that weekend, but
his support had fallen through and he was going to cancel.
Little did I know that my actions over the
next 10 minutes would ultimately set me on a path of discovery of my own over
the next 5 months…
Start the watch, touch the arch, and we were off. 5:03am.
I had felt a bit silly texting Eddie from Primal Tracking
that the revised start time was 5:03 and not just 5 – we were hardly going to
be counting the minutes when we cruised in nicely under schedule in about 19hr
30, but what is it they say? Ignorance is bliss?
Good – clear skies, wet rivers, dryish ground, foliage (mostly) reasonable,12->
25 deg C w mix of overcast and strong sunshine
With the bald facts out of the way time for the
Paul and myself have been friends for many many
years but hadn’t actually had a long day in the hills or a good chat in ages as
I have been doing shorter time based activities whilst he has continued with
the longer stuff. Paul gave me great support in a recent cycling challenge and
my wife Orla was keen for me to repay the favour. With the official approval
out of the way I was good to go!
The original plan was to go bag some Munros in
Scotland. When that plan fell through I
was looking for alternatives closer to home.
It’s been a while since I camped out in the Mournes, so a couple of days
hiking there sounded good. But which
part? Not the same challenge as hiking
up a Scottish Munro since I’d been over most of them before, but then the seed
was sown … Kathleen’s recent completion of the Rankin Round … spend two days
recceing the full route with a possible overnight camp. The decision was made. Planning was kept fairly low-key to say the