Black Mountain (Belfast)

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Black Mountain
Sliabh Dubh/Cnoc Dubh
Triangulation Pillar on Black Mountain - - 1254101.jpg
Triangulation pillar on Black Mountain
Highest point
Elevation 1,275 ft (389 m)
Coordinates 54°36′N5°59′W / 54.6°N 5.98°W / 54.6; -5.98 Coordinates: 54°36′N5°59′W / 54.6°N 5.98°W / 54.6; -5.98
Relief Map of Northern Ireland.png
Red triangle with thick white border.svg
Location in Northern Ireland
Locationnear Belfast, County Antrim, Northern Ireland
OSI/OSNI grid J266741
Topo map OSNI Discoverer 15
Mountain type basalt

Black Mountain is a large hill which overlooks the city of Belfast, Northern Ireland. With a height of 1,275 ft (389 m), [1] it towers over most of west Belfast and is part of the Belfast Hills. Its name is probably derived from the adjoining mountain called Divis ( /ˈdɪvɪs/ ; from Irish Dubhais 'black ridge'), and they may have been seen as one mountain in the past. [2] On the summit is Black Mountain transmitting station.


Black Mountain is composed of basalt with limestone underneath, [3] as is Cavehill further north. There have been flint finds in the area, which also contains raths, deserted farms and overgrown paths joining the fields and homesteads and trails scattered over the mountain. [4] On a clear day there are views of Strangford Lough, the Mournes and the Sperrins, as well as Scotland and County Donegal. [5]

For many years people have lobbied for the preservation of the Belfast Hills, hoping to bring an end to many years of quarrying. [6] The quarry is steep and deeply excavated and the basalt from it is used mostly for road stone. [3]


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  1. Walk NI, Divis & Black Mountain Archived December 19, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  2. Place Names NI
  3. 1 2 Black Mountain Quarry, Belfast, Habitas, Earth Science Conservation Review, National Museums Northern Ireland
  4. Belfast Hills Archived May 23, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  5. NITB
  6. "Northern Ireland Assembly Monday 30 April 2001 (continued) Conservation on the Black Mountain". Northern Ireland Assembly. 2001-04-30. Archived from the original on 2011-04-24. Retrieved 2016-02-18. Every year 500,000 tonnes of stone are removed from the Black Mountain. Two thousand five hundred tonnes are removed every day.
  7. Latest News:: Divis & Black Mountains win Award :: Belfast's Official Tourism Website - Archived December 31, 2005, at the Wayback Machine