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Guide to Climbing Croagh Patrick

Nicknamed the ‘Reek’, hiking Croagh Patrick is usually at the top of many walkers’ to-do lists. But why is this? And what makes Croagh Patrick important? Steeped in history and religion, mystery shrouds this mountain – all adding to its famous allure. So if you’re planning on giving it a go, there are a few things you’ll need to know first. From what to pack to how long it takes to climb it, we’ll prepare you for hiking Croagh Patrick with our guide below.


What to pack for the Croagh Patrick hike

Being prepared is key when you climb any mountain – and this one is no different. Providing you’ve already got the basic hiking gear, there are a few extra items you’ll want to have on hand when on the trail. So before you head up the Reek, here’s what you’ll need to pack for the Croagh Patrick hike:

Waterproof jacket. You don’t want to get caught out in the rain when you’ve still got hours of the trek to go. So be sure to take either a men’s waterproof jacket or a women’s waterproof jacket in your rucksack.
Waterproof trousers. Like above, a pair of women’s waterproof trousers or men’s waterproof trousers is a must-have on this Irish fell hiking expedition.
Fleece. When you start to approach the summit, the temperature has a tendency to drop – so packing a men’s fleece or a women’s fleece is a great way to trap in that vital core warmth.
Spare socks. You never know what could happen while hiking a mountain, so packing an extra pair of walking socks could save you from uncomfortable, cold feet when on the move.
A hat. For sunnier days, take a sun hat to protect you from harmful UV rays. And for cooler days, pack a woolly hat to keep your head insulated – you’ll thank us later.

Walking poles. The terrain can be uneven on hikes like this, so it’s best to take some lightweight walking poles to keep you upright and steady.
A map and compass. A must-have item for ramblers, stay safe and take a map and compass to keep you on the right path.

First aid kit. From scrapes to sprains, a first aid kit is essential for safe and sensible hiking.
Plenty of water. Although it might seem heavy at first, water is crucial for keeping you hydrated and healthy while on the move – especially in warmer weather.
Snacks. Hiking Croagh Patrick isn’t just thirsty work. As well as lunch, you’ll need to pack some nutritious (and sugary) snacks to keep your energy levels from depleting.

How long does it take to climb Croagh Patrick?

When planning your trip, you might be wondering; ‘how long does it take to climb Croagh Patrick?’, so you know just what to prepare for. And annoyingly the answer varies, depending on your fitness levels, agility and even the weather. Typically, we’d recommend setting aside four hours to climb up and down Croagh Patrick. Having said this, if you’re an experienced hiker, it may be possible for you to complete the trek in two and a half hours.

How high is Croagh Patrick?

So how high is Croagh Patrick? Interestingly, it doesn’t even make Ireland’s top ten highest mountains. Standing at 764m tall (2,507ft), Croagh Patrick is still an impressive size and can be spotted from various places across the country – so don’t underestimate the climb!

Can you climb Croagh Patrick anytime?

Ideally, the best times to climb Croagh Patrick are between spring and autumn. While you might get lucky with the weather outside of these times, it’s safest to head up the mountain when visibility is high and the weather is fine.

Why is Croagh Patrick important?

Regarded as the holiest mountain in Ireland, Croagh Patrick is named after the country’s patron saint, Saint Patrick. This came about after the people believed him to have banished snakes from Ireland forever at the foot of the mountain and where he also fasted for 40 days. But the importance of Croagh Patrick didn’t begin there. The pilgrimage that still takes place to this day happened before the times of Christianity, as the Pagans also went on a pilgrimage here to celebrate festivals like the summer solstice and the harvest festival later in the year.

Embarking on the Croagh Patrick hike

• Starting point – the Croagh Patrick Visitors Centre.
• Duration – 14km there and back.
• Time – 3 to 4 hours.

And that concludes our guide to hiking Croagh Patrick. Just remember to take a moment to soak up the views of the Atlantic when you’re at the summit – and treat yourself to a drink when you’ve made it back down! To be fully prepared for the Croagh Patrick hike, make sure you have all the gear you need from our men’s outdoor clothing and women’s outdoor clothing collections.


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