Tracks And Trails visit Co.Down

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Northern Ireland - The Mourne Mountains, Presented by Cliona Hagan

With breathtaking scenery , golden beaches, rugged islands and a beautiful array of wildlife RTE Tracks and Trails takes a series of hikes through Northern Ireland. In this episode presenter Cliona Hagan explores the Mourne Mountains with Peter Rafferty from Walk the Mournes and George Lowden.

Starting near the seaside town of Newcastle, Co.Down, Cliona heads to the Mourne Mountains for her first trail.  She begins her hike at Carrrick Little car park before gently ascending a variety of terrains along the base of Slieve Binnain.  She meets Peter Rafferty at the Blue Lough which is about ½ way along her route, Peter knows every inch of these mountains and as a trained mountain guide has great stories to share and valuable advice for walking in the magical Mournes.  Having walked to the base of Slieve Binnian with Peter, Cliona continues alone to a high point overlooking Ben Crom reservoir, before descending for a gentle walk through Silent Valley.  The Silent Valley is a much loved area in Northern Ireland, known to generations of families.

Cliona traces her path through the valley where she meets luthier George Lowden.  George loves to walk and credits hill walking and hiking as helping him find inspiration for his job.  George is a guitar maker, known the world over to rock stars and pop stars.  George and Cliona walk together alongside the reservoir discussing their love of music and walking, in the shadows of the Mournes which surround them on all sides.