Clara beckons for hill runners
MILLSTEET welcomes the Irish Mountain Running Association on commencing their 2019 programme of activity on a visit to the Clara Hill Run on Saturday commencing at 1pm. There are two race scheduled for Millstreet, also on Saturday, Slí Gaeltacht Mhúscraí (Muskerry Gaeltacht Way) return with the Ultra Trail Race entailing a 70 km race over part of the famous O’Sullivan Bere route. Starting in Kealkil, the race is scheduled for a finish in Millstreet.
Those involved are scheduled to convene in Millstreet at 6am on the Saturday morning before being transported to the start in Kealkil. Slí Gaeltacht Mhúscraí is a fully way-marked trail that covers just over 70km of the route, running between Kealkill and Millstreet.
Runners will cross the Sheehy and Derrynasaggart mountain ranges over a variety of tough open mountain terrain, forest trails and quiet country roads.
Stage 1 of the route between Kealkill and Gougane Barra is also part of a local Pilgrim Walk entailing 16.6km with a cut-off time of three hours to complete. Next up is a 12.2 trek on Stage 2 from Gougane Barra to Ballingeary, the cut-off time for reaching this check-point from the original outset is 5 hours.
Stage 3 is the 19km trail from Ballingeary to Ballyvourney traversing the foothills of the Derrynasaggart mountains.
This route passes the Shrine of St. Gobnait and its said O’Sullivan Beare and his followers stopped there on New Year’s Day 1603 to seek the guidance of St. Gobnait for the long journey ahead.
The final stretch of the Slí climb involves stage 4, the 23.4km distance from Ballyvourney to Millstreet traversing the Derrynasaggart mountains, Mullaghanish and contouring around the north side of Claragh mountain before ascending towards Millstreet town for an official finish in the West End.