News 2019

Title:  Mountain Views News
Date:  02/10/2019

Elizabeth Ashton has become the first woman to visit the summit of all the Vandeleur-Lynams, the 273 mountains in Ireland of 600m or more height with a prominence of at least 15m.

She achieved this in June 2019.  Elizabeth is a member of the committee and has been visiting V-L summits since 2008.

Our congratulations to Elizabeth, known as ‘Liz50’ on

Another female first has also been announced for a completion of the Irish summits contained in the Paddy Dillon book “The Mountains of Ireland” which includes 212 peaks.  This is Christine Gordon who completed visiting the summits on 20th May 2019.

Christine also believes that she is the first woman to climb all the 2000 footers in Britain and Ireland.

Our congratulations to Christine who visited her Irish list from Oct 2017 to May 2019.  Elizabeth Ashton said of this achievement “Have to say Christine sounds amazing”.

Comparing the Vandeleur-Lynam and Paddy Dillon lists.

The Paddy Dillon list was published in 1992 as a list of 2000 footers (609.6m) by Cicerone the prestigious UK walking guide publisher.  The final basis for selection of summits was that of an “on-site appraisal” by Paddy to use his words. Even considering just the summits over 609.6m some 40 were not included.  Overall many hillwalking gems are missed from the list such as Knocknahillion, Corcóg, Croaghan Kinsella and the Faha Ridge.  Conversely it does include White Hill in Wicklow of slight prominence.   The Paddy Dillon book should be regarded today as an early inspiration but with an older list approach, produced without the benefit of the 1:50,000 maps that only became available in the mid-1990s.

MountainViews’s Vandeleur-Lynam (V-L) list was formalised in 2009 based on the Joss Lynam incrementally developed tradition which ended with his 600m Lists (1997 to 2001).  The V-L list was published in print form in 2013 by the then Collins Press, Cork.  It will also appear in the Mountaineering Ireland “Irish Peaks” book due shortly.   Many innovations have been incorporated into the V-Ls on a continuing basis including a non-subjective definition, a prominence figure for all summits and surveying for specific cases as well as extensive user feedback.  MountainViews also publishes several other lists mostly with bigger prominence requirements such as the Hundred Highest list and has gained formal recognition from Mountaineering Ireland, the National Governing Body.  It is supported in the UK by the Database of British and Irish hills and the Long Distance Walks Association.

In summary the modern Vandeleur-Lynam list contains 273 summits, the Paddy Dillon book 212.  Summiting all on either list is an achievement which we celebrate and we congratulate Elizabeth Ashton and Christine Gordon for being the first women to complete the lists they chose.                           

Simon Stewart & MountainViews Committee, Sept 2019


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