Traditional Climbing
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Traditional Climbing

Ireland has an amazing wealth of high-quality rock which is suitable for trad climbing.
Not only has Ireland a long and rich history of trad climbing, we also have a huge amount of un-climbed rock to keep future generations pushing their limits.

Starting to Trad Climb

Starting to trad climb can be a little bit daunting; there's a lot to learn and the consequences of getting it wrong can be very serious.
Fortunately there are a number of ways to start out trad climbing in an enjoyable and safe manner:
  • Join a local climbing club. You can find your local club by clicking on the following link: Find your nearest club
  • Seek instruction from a qualified instructor. There a a number of instructors who will be able to help you if you want to start trad-climbing. Make sure that the instructor is insured, qualified and has plenty current experience. The best way to get in contact with an instructor is to search online.
  • Partner up with a more experienced climber. If you climb at an indoor climbing wall you will probably know a person who trad-climbs. Many climbers are happy to help people start trad-climbing, it's probably how they started themselves.
  • The online forum and the Irish Climbers Facebook group can be good places to connect with a climbing partner online.

Places to Trad Climb

The Ireland of Ireland has a huge number of places to trad-climb; from the very accessible Dalkey Quarry in suburban Dublin to the remote mountain crags of the Poisoned Glen in Donegal. There is a wide variety of rock types from the sandstone of the Gap of Dunloe in Kerry to dolirite of Fairhead in Antrim. The style of climbing also varies; the seacliffs of the Burren give steep, well protected and physical routes whilst in the Mourne mountains the style of climbing is often more slabby, bold and technical.
Published guidebooks are available from the Mountaineering Ireland online shop, from the Mountaineering Ireland office and from outdoor shops.
Click on the links below to go to the Mountaineering Ireland online shop:
For areas not covered by published guidebooks there are a number of excellent online resources:

Access & Environment

All of these places we climb are located on land which is under either private or state ownership. Access for rock climbers to these venues is permitted as long as rock climbers respect the owners and conduct themselves in a responsible manner. Here are a few guidelines to help maintain this balance:
  • Seek the landowners permission where possible
  • Be considerate where you park your car
  • Close any gates after you
  • Do not cause damage to fences or any other property
  • Do not leave any rubbish after you
  • Keep the noise levels down
  • Do not bring dogs where livestock are present

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