The Cork Backpackers Hillwalking Club has a long history promoting all aspects of hill walking, hiking and mountain climbing. The Club had its foundation back in late 1982 when, after a notice appeared in “The Cork Examiner”, a small group met and arranged to go on a hill walk in October. From this small beginning the Club has grown to where it is today.
The early walks were documented in “The Echo”. The walk was described and who took part was noted. At this stage there was no meeting place, and walks took place every three weeks. As numbers grew, friendships developed and the desire to meet socially between walks grew. From this, people started meeting on the Wednesday before walks.
As the numbers continued to increase on walks, the Club moved from one walk for everyone, to graded walks and to taking names beforehand. Over the years the club’s base went from “The Abbey Tavern”, to “The Ovens”, to “The Office”, to “The Grand Circle”, to “The Vinyard”, to “Counihans Pub”, to “Electric Bar”, to “The Ovens Bar”, and currently “Counihan’s Pub”, Pembroke Street, Cork. The Club generally organises weekends away on all major Bank Holidays and has a Sunday walk every two weeks.
The Club Today
Very often members meet to go out independently between walks, especially during the Winter. As one would expect with hill walkers, many members also participate in other sports. These include orienteering, cycling, rock climbing, water sports etc., and from time to time drag their fellow club members along to some events.
The club is also active socially and events include a Christmas Party, Summer Barbecue, Treasure Hunt, Table Quiz, Halloween Party and Holly Walk amongst others. There is an Annual General Meeting in September where members elect a committee to run the club during the year. Members are encouraged to assist the club whenever possible and to volunteer to join the committee.
In summary, there is friendship, amazing landscapes, exercise, a sense of achievement, socialising, “craic” and a host of other benefits.