West Coast of Ireland Adventure Week Westport, Ireland
With Mark Reid FRGS – author of ‘The Inn Way’ guidebooks & Mountain Leader
Spend 5 days exploring the rugged and dramatic mountains, islands and coastline of the wild Atlantic Coast of Ireland, guided by Mark Reid and Richard Duckworth, who are highly experienced Mountain Leaders. Mark knows County Mayo extremely well, and has been visiting Westport and walking the surrounding coastline, hills and mountains for almost 40 years.
There will be five days of walking with an array of routes ranging from adventurous mountain hikes to dramatic hill, glen, island and coastal walks.
Discover adventurous mountain routes, ridges, scrambles and summits, taking you far away from crowds and into a world of majestic glens and quiet mountains in the hauntingly beautiful West Coast of Ireland. Climb to the summit of Croagh Patrick (764m), Ireland’s Holy Mountain, or dramatic Mweelrea (814m), the highest mountain in Connacht with wonderful views across Connemara and the Atlantic.
Explore amazing geology, archaeology, wildlife and seascapes around County Mayo’s wild Atlantic coastline, secluded glens and quiet hills. Explore Clare Island, home of Grace O’Malley the ‘Pirate Queen’, or Achill Island the largest of the Irish isles which recently featured in the film The Banshees of Inisherin.
- Five fantastic days of guided walks, ranging from adventurous mountain routes to hill, glen, island and coastal walks.
- Walks guided by knowledgeable and experienced Mountain Leaders.
- Experience the camaraderie of walking in the beautiful West of Ireland.
- Sociable evenings in one of Westport’s famous pubs, with traditional Irish music.
- Small group size – maximum of 16 hikers with two Mountain Leaders.
WESTPORT, COUNTY MAYO, IRELAND
This 5-day West Coast of Ireland Adventure Week will be based at the lovely coastal town of Westport, County Mayo, Ireland. Westport is a bustling town, famed for its traditional pubs, attractive streets, independent shops and stunning location near Clew Bay and Croagh Patrick. Here you will find an array of hotels, B&Bs, hostels and traditional pubs, plus shops, restaurants, cafes etc. For more information, please visit Destination Westport
HOW TO GET TO WESTPORT
The nearest airport is Ireland West Airport, which is a 45 minute drive from Westport. There is a train station at Westport, with regular trains between Westport and Dublin. Regular ferries operate between Holyhead and Dublin, such as Irish Ferries and Stena Line. It takes about 3.5 hours to drive from Dublin Port to Westport.
Please arrange your own food, travel and accommodation. You will need the use of a car whilst in Westport as the walk meeting points will be within a 60-minute drive of Westport. We will car share wherever possible to reduce our carbon footprint.
OVERVIEW OF THE WALKS
There will be five days of walking with an array of routes ranging from adventurous mountain hikes to dramatic hill, glen, island and coastal walks. The walks will vary each day to give you the very best West Coast of Ireland walking experience, from mountains and glens to coast and islands.
We will walk as one group of up to 16 people, guided by two Mountain Leaders. A good level of fitness is required for these walks. The precise routes will be decided each day given the weather forecast, ground conditions and group needs.
We will meet at 9am each morning at Westport, where you’ll be able to meet your fellow walkers and discuss the day’s adventure. We’ll car share to the starting points of the walk, which will be within a 60-minute drive of Westport, such as Murrisk (10 minute drive), Sheeffry Hills (35 minute drive), Delphi (40 minute drive) or Achill Island (55 minute drive), All walks will finish by around 5pm.
The MOUNTAIN WALKS may include iconic mountains such as Croagh Patrick, Mweelrea, Nephin Beg, Sheeffry Hills and Knockmore. These are remote mountains with amazing views on a clear day. These will be demanding full day mountain walks with steep broken ground, sustained ascents and descents, rocks, boulders and scree, exposed paths, narrow ridges and challenging mountainous terrain. Paths are few and far between, so many routes will include long stretches of open country across rough moorland, bog and mountainous terrain, with stream crossings.
The HILL, GLEN, ISLAND & COASTAL WALKS may include Doo Lough, Silver Strand, Clare Island, Achill Island and the dramatic coastline and beaches of Clew Bay with its drowned drumlin field of beautiful small islands. These will be full day walks along clifftops and coastlines, beaches and bays, through glens, across moorland and hills (up to around 450m) with ascents/descents, uneven ground, river/stream crossings and rough terrain in places. Again, paths are rare in Ireland and so expect rough and pathless terrain on all walks.
EVENING: Meet at one of Westport’s famous pubs (traditional music) each evening to recount our day’s adventures (optional).
YOUR GUIDE - MARK REID
MARK REID is the author of 17 walking guidebooks including ‘The Inn Way’ series. He is a qualified Walking Group Leader, Hill & Moorland Leader and Mountain Leader, and has an unrivalled knowledge of the history and geography of the North of England. Mark has a BA (Hons) Geography degree from the University of Lancaster and is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society (FRGS). Mark has walked over 28,000 miles of footpaths since 1997, and has taken over 17,000 people out walking in the countryside – he’s been an Outdoor Professional for 26 years! Mark has appeared on ITV YORKSHIRE on the TV walks series ‘A Breath of Fresh Air’ along with ITV weatherman Jon Mitchell, as well as ITV1’s The Dales.
EXPERIENCE, FITNESS & INFORMATION
- No experience is required as full guidance will be given.
- A good level of fitness is required for these walks as there will be five days of consecutive walking on mountain, hill, glen, coastal, beach and island hikes, which will be physically demanding and include steep, mountainous and rocky terrain at times, with the potential for adverse weather conditions. The mountain walks will include uneven ground, rough, rocky and mountainous terrain, river/stream crossings, wet/boggy ground, sustained ascents and descents, steep and exposed ground, boulder fields, dramatic ridges, Grade 1 scrambling (hands on rock / rock steps / exposed terrain above steep drops) and mountain summits; we may also experience adverse weather conditions. The hill, glen, coastal, beach and island walks will include uneven ground, rough and rocky terrain, stream crossings, wet/boggy ground, ascents and descents, clifftop paths, rough moorland and hills up to around 450m above sea level; we may also experience adverse weather conditions. There will be pathless terrain for long stretches on all walks.
- Access to the vast majority of Ireland’s mountains and hills is due to the goodwill and tolerance of the landowners, rather than access being based on any formal arrangement or Rights of Way network. Access cannot be taken for granted, and maintaining the goodwill that access depends upon is a shared responsibility. We all must be courteous, respectful and leave no trace of our presence. For more information, please visit: Mountaineering Ireland
- We can provide full outdoor walking gear, including waterproof jackets, trousers, fleeces, rucksacks, gloves and hats.
- We are fully insured (public, civil & professional indemnity insurance)
- All of our instructors are fully qualified and experienced Mountain Leaders
- So far, we have taken over 16,000 people out walking in the hills, and have a wealth of experience dealing with all ages and abilities.
- Part of the attraction of valley, hill and mountain walking is the challenge of tackling different terrains, landscapes and weather conditions. Every effort is made to minimize potential hazards; however, the very nature of hill and mountain walking involves a certain level of unavoidable risk of accident and/or injury. By taking part in this activity, you are aware of and accept these risks.
- Our walks are suitable for all ages. Under 18s (minimum age 14) may attend if accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. The child must be accompanied at all times during the walk by their parent/legal guardian.
- As this walking week is in the Republic of Ireland then we strongly recommend that you have adequate travel and health insurance; you will also require a passport.
- Terms and Conditions