The Sunrise Summit takes places on Carrauntoohill, Lugnaquilla, Djouce, Galtymore, Mweelrea and Errigal
Jason Black has not only previously summited Everest but he has also attempted K2 and holds the mountaineering world record for the double ascent of Kilimanjaro in 22.5 hours
One of Ireland’s leading high-altitude mountaineers Jason Black is calling on those who enjoy the great outdoors to join him on the Irish Red Cross Sunrise Summit Challenge which takes place on Saturday 26 May. This is a night-time hike where participants ascend one of Ireland’s six most challenging peaks in the early-morning darkness to reach the mountain summit in time to watch the sun rise over Ireland.
From Donegal, Jason Back is a global endurance athlete and not only has he previously summited Everest, but he holds the mountaineering world record for the double ascent of Kilimanjaro in 22.5 hours and he is also one of few Irish men to have ever attempted to climb K2, the world’s second highest - but most dangerous - mountain.
While Jason Black has chosen his beloved Mount Errigal for his Sunrise Summit, there are five other peaks to choose from; Carrauntoohill, Lugnaquilla, Djouce, Galtymore, Mweelrea and Errigal.
Speaking ahead of the challenge, Jason notes; “I am very excited and urge others to take part in this challenge. These six mountains mean a lot to our country. They stand tall and strong in our communities as a reminder that no mountain is too high and no problem is too big to conquer. The Irish Red Cross has reached out to help in local communities all over Ireland on so many occasions, particularly in the last year during Storm Emma, Storm Ophelia and the Donegal Floods. This is an opportunity to give back, while at the same time doing something positive with the family that’s fun and active.”
Jason has advice for those about to embark on the challenge; “prepare for all types of conditions, ensuring you have warm clothes. Bring enough snacks and water to eat and drink every 20 minutes. Finally, bring a head torch, appropriate footwear and lastly, a camera to campture those all-important smiles!”
Jason is not just involved in mountaineering. He is a global endurance athlete and in a few weeks he is attempting to break the World Ultra Cycling Association World Indoor Record which will see him attempt to cycle 950km in 24 hours (or 3,850 laps and 14,000 corners of a velodrome at an average speed of 41kph non-stop for the full 24 hours).
Sunrise Summit Challenge Details
With six peaks to choose from, the Sunrise Summit Challenge has a mountain for all tastes. For the Bear Grylls – (or wannabe Bear Grylls!) – among you, Carrauntoohill may be the summit of choice, even if just for the bragging rights that come with climbing Ireland’s highest peak. It will take about 5-7 hours to make the return trip, covering a distance of 12-13 km altogether. But Lugnaquilla is also for thrillseekers as climbers on this Wicklow summit will have to ensure they don’t wander into the Irish army’s firing range!
On Ireland’s highest inland mountain range - the Galtees - you can find one of Ireland’s best preserved mountain walls, the Galty Wall, which is nearly 4km long, while Donegal’s Errigal may be the choice of loved-up couples as it’s known for the alluring pink glow of its quartzite in the sun.
Mweelrea on the Murrisk Peninsula in Co Mayo is the peak with a view; climbers can check out beautiful beaches, bays dotted with islands and the Twelve Bens mountain range while Djouce in Co Wicklow offers views to Snowdon in Wales on a clear day.
Each group will be guided by trained and experienced Mountain Guides, who will lead them safely to the mountain peaks.
This night hike raises funds for communities affected by natural disasters and conflict worldwide. Participants will be supporting the Irish Red Cross’ work at home and in countries like Syria, Yemen and Myanmar.
The six different mountain locations across Ireland participants can choose from are:
Carrauntoohill - Co Kerry
Lugnaquilla - Co Wicklow
Djouce - Co Wicklow
Galtymore - Co Tipperary
Mweelrea - Co Mayo
Errigal - Co Donegal
The registration fee is €50 per participant which guarantees a place on the challenge. Participants must each fundraise a minimum of €100 (ex.booking) to take part. All participants must have registered in advance of the event.
For more information, and to register for the 2018 Sunrise Summit Challenge, visit www.redcross.ie/sunrisesummit or contact Louise at the Irish Red Cross on 01-642-4616.