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Author Topic: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel  (Read 15792 times)

surfnscenic

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Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« on: June 07, 2010 »

I was meant to have a walk along Silent Valley to the head of Ben Crom last Saturday but had to cancel at the last minute.  Planning to do it sometime soon and was doing a bit of net surfing. I came upon this BBC NI article about the tunnel and a recent re-union of the men who worked on/in it.  Fascinating stuff even by today's standards.
 
Can anyone confirm grids for the start (Binnian side) and end (Silent Valley) side of the tunnel?

Hope you find it interesting.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/northernireland/yourplaceandmine/down/A814862.shtml

Surfnscenic
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Chuck

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2010 »

According to my Dad the start (Binnian side) is here: W 5.94784507 N 54.14965003.

When you are at the weir there is a single building (on the right of this picture):


with an instruction board just beside it (centre of this picture)



The pipe itself is just to the left of the last picture.

The Silent Valley end of the pipe is pictured here:




I'm almost sure that's beside the road that runs the length of Silent Valley. I'm sure I've seen it (and the plaque)

Total guestimate, but it could be at this point: W 6.00061652 N 54.14461923

HTH

Update: another pic of the Silent Valley end of the pipe:

http://www.geograph.ie/photo/1638260 complete with a different set of coordinates (hmm...seems my mapping software is using 'WGS 84 Degrees', if that makes any sense to you)

« Last Edit: June 07, 2010 by Chuck »
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surfnscenic

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2010 »

Thanks Chuck for the detailed reply. 

I'll have to make a point of checking each end just out of pure curiosity.  I have a feeling that I may have unknowingly been at the Binnian end some years ago whilst walking through the eastern side of Annalong Wood and on south through Dunnywater to Rourkes Park entrance gates. Possible GR  is 342243.  A call with the Visitor Centre at Silent Valley has to be included in my proposed walk.

If I do get to do this I'll update this post.

Cheers.
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surfnscenic

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2010 »

Chuck,

666-pack initiated a post on this same topic back in November last year.

http://www.ni-wild.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=663.msg4790#msg4790

for your info.
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RedLeader

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2010 »

I would love to see this. We should take a wander up some day.
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Chuck

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2010 »

Annalong Wood and on south through Dunnywater to Rourkes Park entrance gates.
Yup, that's it.

surfnscenic

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2010 »

Got to Silent Valley on Wednesday and yes it was wet, very wet.  Having no sense whatsoever (why do you want to walk up these mountains anyway?) I got my waterproofs on and walked to the northern side of Ben Crom reservoir.  Even though the cloud was low the views and spectacle of the valley is fantastic. Got to see the the Binnian Tunnel.

Noted two potential campsites:- firstly-on the eastern side of the river which might be more susceptible to flooding, there was plenty of surface water then.
secondly - on the western side which due to the flow of the river I was unable to get across to check out properly. Plenty of evidence of previous use.

On the return leg the mist started to lift and the views were even better.  Interestingly one of the security guards' Father and Uncle  worked on the tunnel so had a long chat with him.

Took my time going home to Annahilt via Spelga and even stopped for a last cuppa at Ott car park.  Boots are nearly dried out now though I probably won't be able to get to use them for another week or so, though we always live in hope.

Appreciated the information and pictures.



Surfnscenic.
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Chuck

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2010 »

Good stuff.

Sorry, what area are the camp sites you mention? Northern side of Ben Crom reservoir (near the shelter stone)? Or at the Tunnel entrance at the lower end of the Annalong River?

even stopped for a last cuppa at Ott car park.
1L flasks are great for that...enough water for lunch of a cup-a-soup, followed by a coffee...leaves just enough water for another cup of something on the way home. :)

surfnscenic

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2010 »

Both sites at Shelter Stone GR 325 272, one each side of the Kilkeel River.  Is the Shelter Stone a noticeable feature or could it be easliy missed?  I saw quiet a few large rocks but wasn't sure if I was looking a the correct one.
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Chuck

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2010 »

Ahh right. I only know of that area as "Shelter Stone" from seeing it on the map (attached), never actually gone down to it, so I'm unsure of it's size etc.

surfnscenic

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2010 »

Chuck, put the Silent Valley to Ben Crom walk on your list of things to do certainly at least as a day trip. 
The path from SV to the foot of Ben Crom Dam is tarmacadam which speeds the initial 3 mile section up. After climbing 271 concrete steps to the top of the Ben Crom dam there is narrow path along the eastern side of Ben Crom reservoir right up to where the Kilkeel River flows in. That's another mile or thereabouts. It's a little precarious in places though passable with caution.
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surfnscenic

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #11 on: June 10, 2010 »

http://img202.imageshack.us/g/silentvalley8june10015.jpg/

Chuck, as mentioned previously these are in the vicinity of the Shelter Stone.
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Scribble

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2010 »

When I walked along there I seen 2 tents pitched on the shingle beach on the left hand side in the second picture .
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Chuck

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #13 on: June 11, 2010 »

Chuck, put the Silent Valley to Ben Crom walk on your list of things to do certainly at least as a day trip. 

I've done that area a fair bit but never right to the end of Ben Crom.
* Chuck makes another entry on the 'To be walk' list

surfnscenic

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Re: Binnian to Silent Valley water tunnel
« Reply #14 on: April 09, 2011 »

On Thursday 7 April 2011 walked up through Rourkes Park starting at GR 357 224 to the weir at GR342243 the start of the Binnian Tunnel.  I had been there before but didn't realise the significance of the weir being the start of a tunnel. 

http://img836.imageshack.us/slideshow/player.php?id=img836/777/13023894655ia.smil
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