Question and answer session with Sperrintrek Walk Leader

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1.What is your involvement with Sperrintrek?

As a member of Mid-Ulster Walking Club I have been involved in helping to plan routes, produce maps and provide photographs.

2.How did you come to be a walk Leader?

Over twenty years of walking in hills and mountains.

3.Why do you enjoy it so much?

I like the social aspect of walking and talking with others, but also like walking on my own-usually with a camera-just enjoying the scenery and wildlife and getting closer to my Maker.

4.Tell us something interesting about the Sperrins?

They were once as high as “The Himalayas”, and are made of rocks altered by hundreds of millions of years of earth’s history.

5.Why would you encourage people to come on a Sperrintrek?

The walks are led by experienced members of Mid-Ulster Walking Club who know the Sperrins well, the views and skies are spectacular and it improves your fitness.

6.Who is the most interesting person you have ever met walking in the Sperrins?

I meet lots of sheep farmers such as Jim Diamond, also a sheep dog judge is one, their chat is always interesting.

7.Do the Sperrins attract walkers from overseas?

Not as much as they should, most people like walking on paths-the Sperrins have few. Development is limited, and so much more work needs to be done in this area by the local Councils.

8.How do you prepare for a weekend of hill walking?

I can be a bit lazy about this. Clean and polish boots on Saturday evening. Check that the rucksack has waterproof gear and maps. Make sure the GPS, and camera have freshly charged batteries, then pack a lunch and something to drink. I don’t usually decide what to wear until the morning of the walk.

9.Do you need any special clothes or equipment?

Good waterproof gear, gaiters, proper walking boots, three or four upper body clothing layers in the winter, warm cap, backpack. Personally I always carry a GPS, compass and map and a of course a camera.

10.Finally, one word to sum up the Sperrintrek Experience?

Mid-Ulster Walking Club know the Sperrins well. It gives members of our club the chance to meet walkers from other parts of the province and introduce them to our local hills. The co-operation between our club and the enthusiastic team ( mostly girls) at the council has worked really well.