Thinking of taking on Ireland’s highest mountain? Let us help you prepare. We’ve created the ultimate guide to hiking Carrauntoohil. Find out everything you need to know, from how long it takes and what you’ll need for the hike, to the different routes you can follow and lots of handy tips along the way. Start planning for your adventure and read our guide to hiking Carrauntoohil below.
How Long Does It Take To Climb Carrauntoohil?
One of the most frequently asked questions is, ‘how long does it take to climb Carrauntoohil?’. On average, hiking Carrauntoohil will take you between four to six hours. However, this does depend on several factors, such as fitness level, weather conditions, temperature etc.
What You’ll Need For Hiking Carrauntoohil
Before you get started on your trek, there are a few key pieces of kit you’ll need to ensure your safety and keep you comfortable along the way. Generally speaking, you’ll need these items all year round:
• Hooded lightweight waterproof jacket
• Moisture-wicking t-shirt
• Hiking pants, need to be flexible and loose
• Walking poles
• Hot water
• 2l water bottle
• Lunch pack
• First aid kit
• Spare lightweight top in a dry bag
• Sun hat
• Head torch
Although if you’re tackling the mountain in winter, make sure you have these essentials on your person:
• Wool hiking socks
• Hat or balaclava
• Leather hiking boots
• Waterproof insulating jacket
• Waterproof overtrousers
How To Climb Carrauntoohil
Start at Cronin’s yard and make your way towards the mountains on the dirt track – this should take you one to two hours. As you approach the Devil’s Ladder, you’ll find a steep narrow gulley with loose stones, so take care at this part. In total, the Ladder should take you around an hour and a half to complete.
Don’t like the sound of the Devil’s Ladder? Don’t worry. Another one of the Carrauntoohil climbing routes is via the Zig Zags. Much easier than the latter, you can make your ascent up the Zig Zags without having to find a different starting point.
Cummeenoughter/Brother O’Shea’s Gulley
The perfect middle ground when it comes to hiking Carrauntoohil is to head up via O’Shea’s Gulley. Spot the highest lake in Ireland, Cummeenoughter, on this route. From here, make your way up through Brother O’Shea’s Gulley and witness the spectacular views – make sure to take some snapshots while you’re here as you won’t want to forget this moment. After just 45 minutes you’ll reach the summit. While some daredevils may want to try and walk back down via the Devil’s Ladder, we’d recommend descending on the Zig Zags instead.
Ready to try the Carrauntoohil mountain hike yourself? Remember to stick to the paths, take plenty of breaks and to be prepared with the appropriate kit from Craghoppers.