Hen, Cock and Pigeon Rock

(7 reviews)

A circular route in the western Mournes giving a taster of views that can be experienced in the region. The walker will ascend Hen, Cock and Pigeon Rock Mountains using open mountain terrain before descending through a valley to the starting car park.

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Hen, Cock and Pigeon Rock



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  • Solo hike today in lovely sunshine. Hen very suitable for family groups. Descent from Hen towards Cock easy going. However what a slog up the steep slope of Cock mountain over boggy heather. Easily enough forgotten though when you reach the summit as views beautiful over Spelga dam. On to Pigeon rock a little boggy and wall descent down to river bed also boggy so recommend good walking boots! Nice dander down hen track back to Carpark.

    Hazel Ellis at 11:28 pm
  • County Down

    Distance 5.9 miles

    OS Map Sheet 29

    Terrain Loose surface tracks, open mount

    Nearest Town Hilltown

    Route Shape Circular

    Grid Reference J23292 27727

    Route Type Mountain

    Route Description

    Leave Sandbank Car Park and cross the Sandbank Road to Hen track, directly opposite. Follow Hen track up to the gate. After the stone wall follow the well worn track cross country to ascend Hen Mountain. From here there is no constructed path on the route until the Hen Track is rejoined later at the Rowan Tree River. At the summit, explore the impressive collection of tors popular with rock climbers. From the south tor descend south east before starting the steeper ascent up Cock Mountain. Ascend Cock Mountain from where there are impressive views of Spelga Dam Reservoir to the east. Descend Cock Mountain in a south south easterly direction to flatter ground which can be boggy, before ascending Pigeon Rock Mountain to meet Batts Wall at its summit. Follow Batts Wall initially in a south easterly direction and then in a south westerly direction to the col between Pigeon Rock Mountain and Slievemoughanmore, where you will meet the upper stretch of the Rowan Tree River. Follow the river to join Hen track. Follow the track back to Sandbank Road Car Park.

    Point of Interest

    Hen Mountain, Cock Mountain, Pigeon Rock Mountain

    Getting to the start

    The walk starts at the Sandbank Road Car Park. To get here follow the Kilkeel Road out of Hilltown for 2.9 km, turn right at the Sandbank Road crossroads and continue for 1.4 km, Hen car park is on the right hand side.

    Public transport

    Translink – journeyplanner.translink.co.uk

    Dog Policy

    Dogs are not allowed.

    Facilities

    Car park and picnic facilities available at Sandbank Road Car Park

    Accessibility Grade
    Grade 5

    • There may not be a formalised path, and variable, single file trails are to be expected.
    • Gradients and cross slope could be expected to be steep and not limited.
    • Obstacles and surface breaks of greater than 75mm measured across the line of the path to be expected.
    • Overhanging branches are possible. Passing places and rest areas may not be formalised or provided.