Over millennia, Ireland’s mountains and coasts have been carved by the elements, creating airy peaks, dizzying ridges, narrow gullies and weathered cliffs and crags. Epic sounding place-names tell tales of adventure…Howling Ridge in Kerry’s MacGillycuddy Reeks, Great Gully in the Wicklow Mountains or An Bonnan Bui in Clare.
But you’ll need experience to go it alone as these routes involve proper rock climbing and scrambling (where you’ll need your hands and feet). As well as a map and compass, be sure to know when and how to use ropes and harnesses.
You can also do a climbing or mountaineering course to take on independent adventures, practising indoors or outdoors. Bouldering is another great way to improve your climbing skills. It involves climbing without ropes on large natural boulders (or artificial ones in gyms) or at the base of larger rock faces with a crash mat below to minimise the risk of injury.