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Guide Kathryn discusses returning to the hills after time spent sedentary


Hiking in The Comeragh Mountains, County Waterford


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Blog.. Shorts

Weather.. Mammatus Clouds

Appreciating Mammatus clouds on my cycle this morning. These pockets form on the underside of storm clouds. Unusually, they form by sinking pockets of cold air. Normally clouds form opposite to this. 🌧 🌨 ☁️

How they form is not yet fully understood but for us hikers, what can they mean? Mammatus form under a turbulent sky, you can see in the radar capture from the same moment I was on the edge of a storm cell, so a good chance of rain or hail and moderate to strong winds. On the hills I'd be conscious of the direction the weather was travelling and wary of the crack of thunder.
Latin translation; mamma meaning "udder" or "breast"..

#cloudstagram #hikersofinstagram #hikingireland

We have a short blog on our website for hikers and fans of weather

Nature.. Hawthorn & Blackthorn

Its in the name, both have similar flowers but the key to telling them apart is in the name. Blackthorn have a darker stem, Hawthorn is a lighter grey. This time of year (from March) the Blackthorn flowers are on display before the leaves whereas Hawthorn leaves appear first

Leaves on both are quite different, Blackthorn has jagged oval leaves and sloe berries which appear in autumn. The Hawthorn has a lobey.... obovate leaf and red berries.

#peacfulmoment #explore #natureinfocus

Enviornment; Air Pollution

The image demonstrates pollution accumulation during a cool clear period. There are a number of factors that cause air pollution to accumulate like this.

Weather Factors

Taken during an extended period of high pressure over the alps, which meant clear, cold days causing a weather inversion. This requires unsettled weather to disperse the trapped layer which contains air pollution.

Pollution Source

Three significant contributors in the area;

1. The Mont Blanc Tunnel sees traffic from most of western Europe travelling to Italy. Vehicle traffic contributes significantly to pollution in Chamonix. An estimated 750,000 trucks travelled through the Mont Blanc tunnel in 1996

2. Wood burning in winter months creates pollution that can sit in the valley for days on end. This can have a range of impacts on human health from asthma attacks to lung disease. 

3. Industrial pollution; an incinerator located in the L’Arve Valley just over 20km from Chamonix town centre sees seasonal increase in waste volume due to tourism [1]