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Carrauntoohil Mountain Via Devil's Ladder Trail

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Killarney National Park

Carrauntoohil Mountain Via Devil's Ladder Trail is a 7.9 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Killarney, County Kerry, Ireland that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and nature trips and is best used from April until September.

Length 7.9 mi Elevation gain 2,965 ft Route type Loop

Hiking

Nature trips

Walking

Lake

River

Views

Waterfall

Wildlife

Rocky

Scramble

Off trail

No shade

No dogs

Description
Waypoints (2)
Facilities
Getting There

A gorgeous hike to the top of the tallest mountain in Ireland. Though there are several different routes up Carrauntoohil, the Devil's Ladder is the most common route. Most of the "ladder" itself has become eroded and loose rock makes the scramble up and down exciting, but very rewarding.

A fee of 2 will cover parking. If the river cannot be crossed, return to the Kissane's shop and take the next track on the left avoiding the river crossing. No parking is available along this small track so be careful where you leave your car has the track is narrow and used by local farmers.

From Killarney drive towards Beauford/Gap of Dunloe following the 'Ring of Kerry' to the Hags Glen close to the town land of Carhoonahone. At a small countryside junction you will see Kissane's shop and a telephone box. Take the road on the left, at the end of which is a small farmyard with a car park. Follow the small track that leads to the Gaddagh River that you will have to cross and then continue up the Hag Glen. Note: this river is not always crossable during or after heavy rainfall. If this is the case, return to the Kissane's shop and take the next track on the left avoiding the river crossing.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (178)
Photos (303)
Recordings (158)
Completed (292)
Ilona Nowicka
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Hiking
View Ilona 's Recording
Gerda Coyne
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HikingRocky

It’s hard but worth it. Make sure you are prepared and bring water and snacks. The weather can change very fast so bring some water proof clothes and a change in the car. The carpark is €2 and there are bathroom facilities there

Gearóid Wrixon
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HikingScramble
Patrick Bourke
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HikingRockyScramble

It’s incredibly important to follow the trail meticulously going up the Brother O’Shea’s route, in fact everywhere really. We lost it on the way up and climbed a gully section which was a very bad decision. Thankfully we made it out. I would urge no one else to attempt this. Took the zig zags back down to extend the walk slightly and get the views back across to Carrauntoohil. A beautiful but challenging mountain all in all. The toughest in Ireland I have experienced.

View Patrick's Recording
Susan Mccormack
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HikingRockyScramble

Great trail but not to be underestimated. Took us 6.5 hours and we are fairly fit but not experienced hikers. Download a map and compass- you might need it although the path is mostly fairly obvious. We had bad weather at the top but don’t regret a thing. We went up and down the devils ladder- which was exciting but scary when you are trying to watch 3 kids (12,13,16). Wear hiking boots- I did see people in runners but I would not attempt it in them. Bring layers including a good rain coat. You will need plenty of water

Julie Whitney
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Hiking

This was a highlight of our time in Ireland. We were there in March and it was honestly a lot harder than anything we’ve done and we’ve hiked 13 Colorado 14ers. The water coming down Devils Ladder was significant and made all the rocks super slippery and mossy. It was snowing at the top but we ate our lunch and it cleared out for a short time and the views were stunning. Getting down Devils Ladder was daunting because it is not only physical but you have to stay mentally sharp because of how wet and slippery it is. I was glad I didn’t see the memorial wall to those who have died until we got back!! This hike is magnificent but no joke. Be prepared.

Laurence Georgiou
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Hiking

Starts easy you are thinking no problem I’ll finish this in half the time, until you hit the devils staircase then it steps up a notch. Hard hike make sure you have proper equipment

View Laurence's Recording
Beverly Brooks
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HikingScramble

I hiked this bad boy a couple years ago and went up via Devils Ladder. I did my research prior to visiting Ireland and decided to hire a guide. I’m very glad I did and he was worth every cent! Don’t under estimate the terrain! Be prepared to work for those gorgeous views at the top :)

Dean L.
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HikingScramble
View Dean's Recording
Nia N.
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Hiking

Challenging but worth it when you get to the top and it is a clear day you get to enjoy one of the best views in the area.

Stanislava Slavikova
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Hiking

Absolutely amazing hike, one of my favourite places in Ireland

Rebecca Dordolo
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HikingRockyScramble

Okay so I did this in 2018 and I did my research before going up. Back then I was more fit than I am now (which isn't saying much) but it took me 12 freaking hours to do this. I took it slow, it's HARD. At the time, it was normal for me to walk home 6km after a shift on my feet but it still kicked my ass...definitely have to scramble to get up the ladder using your whole body and hands to pull you up. Make sure you pack well, bring plenty of water and good solid snacks and start early in the day. Tip for the wise: don't starve yourself of water! a man asked me for water on my way down and I still had enough to get me back to my car so I happily gave him some...but he chugged it and proceeded to vomit it back up which led me to run down and nearly fall trying to get away from him. Be smart! All that being said, it was very rewarding and very beautiful. The first part is a defined path that goes by a lake with tons of photo opportunities. the ladder is a rocky scramble until you reach the ridge which has AMAZING views. then the final ascent isn't clear in terms of a path, but it gets you there, and it's mostly lose rock pieces. the top on a good clear summer day is amazing!!

Lynn O'Doherty
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Hiking

An amazing hike. Definitely go with experience. Did the Devil's Ladder up and down. It's quite a scramble so careful footing and hands are essential. Pack well for the hike.

Helena McCarthy
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HikingRockyScramble
Timothy Monahan
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Hiking

Brilliant hike but not for the faint of heart or inexperienced if you attempt in February conditions. We packed poles, goggles, micro spikes, and face covers...and needed it all to complete the hike. There was one group that had to turn back about 2500’ because the wind was whipping hail into their faces. We knew this hike was a serious challenge this time of year and that’s why we came; please make sure you are prepared if attempting and BE SAFE. There are placards for those who died attempting the summit previously. (Not for inexperienced hikers and climbers.) The rocks are very loose on Devil’s Ladder, so beware. But since I haven’t mentioned it yet, it was one of the best hikes I’ve ever completed. My 12 year old son is an experienced mountaineer and he loves it, too.

Sharon O'Flaherty
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Hiking

One of my all tine favourite treks! It has everything and breathtaking scenery on a clear day! Have done it in cloudy, overcast, wet days... still a pleasant trek!

Al Wec
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HikingFeeFloodedRockyScramble

Fantastic hike, though don’t get your hopes up there will be a view at the top. The wind and fog bring the temperature down so you might want to bring a hat, scarf, and gloves. The devil’s ladder is a really fun rock scramble with water going throughout. Go slow. Also, be weary of the muddy bogs and slick grass. Better to stick the rocks. Also, the cronies yard charges two euros.

View Al's Recording
Adam Woodard
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HikingMuddyRockyScramble
View Adam 's Recording
Brandon Wysowski
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HikingRockyScramble

What a fantastic hike to the top of Ireland. Weather was light mist with moments of rain. This time of year and weather revealed some beautiful full cliff waterfalls. Devils ladder is something to take serious, but can be accomplished with proper boots. Due to the weather and therefore sloppy rocks on Devils ladder, decided to take the zig zag route for the descent.

View Brandon's Recording
Pete Moriarty
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Hiking

amazing 100% recommend

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