Macgillycuddy's Reeks

The top of Ireland, at the bottom of Ireland.

Ireland is a lot like Wales, with mountains in many places, the tallest being a little over 1000 metres. It has a great coastline, and only a slightly higher amount of rain. It also has plenty of limestone and caves. (It even has a similar stone age and Celtic history, and British Empire takeover, but that's not relevant in this gallery, so ...) It does have more bogs and more lakes, but that's to be expected given its size. The main mountain difference is that the tallest are in the south instead of the north. This walk summits the tallest mountain; Carrauntoohil. At 1038 metres, it's slightly shorter than the top 4 tallest mountains in Wales, but has a very similar character. It's a significant climb that was far too much for the rest of the family, who went cycling instead.

When defining a mountain, the Nuttall approach (610 metres+ altitude, 15 metres+ prominence) most closely resembles the traditional British definition of mountain, represented in the now-more-common metric system. Note, however, that mountains in Ireland have not been catalogued under the Nuttall system, and instead details are only available for the Hewitt system (609.6 metres+ altitude, 30 metres+ prominence), though there is a site giving details of peaks, that seems to follow the Nuttall approach. Depending on which you use, Macgillycuddy's Reeks contains either the 8 tallest mountains (Nuttalls) or 7 tallest mountains (Hewitts) in Ireland, as well as the 10th-12th (Nuttalls), or 9th-10th (Hewitts) tallest.

I use the Nuttall approach for defining a mountain, but note that the Irish maps are of such poor quality that it is impossible to be sure about the mountain heights and prominence. Often they will invent contour lines that should not exist, or make incorrect guesses about features. Most features that you would expect to see on a mountain-area map (fences, lesser paths, marshes, etc.) are missing. The print quality is also bad enough that contours occasionally cannot be distinguished from the dots used to shade areas. In many cases, contours are not even labelled, so you cannot tell if you are looking at a peak or a depression (such as a shakehole or turlough).