An Event To Tell The Grandkids.

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Last month, my boyfriend and I took a trip to Ireland to visit my family and we ended up staying with my Uncle and Auntie in Murrisk for most of the trip. Murrisk is an absolutely beautiful village in County Mayo which is on the West coast of Ireland and is home to Ireland's Holy mountain - Croagh Patrick. Now I've seen Croagh Patrick many times and I have family members who have climbed the mountain but I've never been all the way to the top myself. I thought that while we were staying there it was an opportunity not to be missed.

Climbing Croagh Patrick was easily one of the hardest things I've ever done and it took us a good few hours to climb all the 762m above sea level to the top and back down again. It was challenging, many breaks were taken and I'm in no rush to go and do it again but I am so happy that I can say I have climbed it. I don't really know what I expected. I expected it to be tough, it's a mountain. But I wasn't prepared for how steep it was at all. Or for the fact that if you went very wrong, it could possibly end quite badly. There wasn't a path or anything, like people think there will be. It's just rocks. But we were fine and we met loads of people coming up and down who were so lovely and offered encouragement. The views when we got to the top were amazing, you could see for miles and if the weather had been a little bit nicer then I could have stayed up there for hours. Even if you don't make it to the top, the views from the half way point are stunning so it's worth it if you try and make it to there.

The whole reason why Croagh Patrick is such a big deal is because Saint Patrick is supposed to have completed a 40 day fast there and legend also has it that the mountain is where Saint Patrick banished snakes from Ireland forever! Each year, on the last Sunday of July, thousands of people from around the world visit the mountain for a day of worship in honour of Saint Patrick. Some of these people even climb the mountain barefoot as an act of penance (you'd never catch me climbing that thing barefoot but each to their own).

I seriously admire anybody who makes it to the top and my auntie even did this thing for charity one year when she climbed Croagh Patrick every day for a week. Which I think is so impressive because I was really tired the next day and couldn't even think about going up again. Plus there was a man who climbed the mountain every day for a year. A WHOLE YEAR. If that's not impressive then I don't know what is. I think it's something that should definitely be done once in your lifetime and if you ever get the chance to go and see it then you definitely should. Murrisk is beautiful and the mountain makes for some breath-taking pictures. When we stayed at their house I could see the mountain from the bedroom window and that was a view that I definitely think I could never get used to.

Climbing Croagh Patrick is an experience that I will never forget and I'm so happy that I managed to do it.

Ciara x

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