Greg Callaghan sent over a great story about him and his mates pushing up and riding one of Irelands highest mountains. In this age of uplifts it’s refreshing to see some lads putting in the graft to ride the descent.
Last Saturday myself and a bunch of lads from 021racing made the trip west to concur the mighty mountain that is Croagh Patrick in Ireland. Croagh Patrick is one of Ireland’s biggest mountains at 885 or so metres and is named after Saint Patrick so it has some religious values. Alot of people walk up and down it as a pilgrimage to get rid of their sins and some of them even do it barefoot! We kept our shoes on just dragged the bikes up instead though.
We were in the pub untill late on Friday night and after sleeping in the back of a volvo had to get up at 4a.m.to start the ascent on the mountain, we were feeling a bit rough to say the least. We left the bottom at 5 and made it to the top in and hour and a half which wasn’t too bad considering you have to carry the bikes on your back for a good chunk of the climb.
Walking up the mountain some of the stuff looked fairly mad and slightly scared some of us at the thought that we had to try ride down it, but suprisingly these bits were flat out and not too hard, just great craic!
How many of you can say you sat on a toilet on top of a mountain at 800m? This was a fully kitted out bog with PVC doors and everything and theres a church up there too, wouldn’t have liked to have been the guy who had to carry the urinal up that mountain though.
There were a group of 3 lads attempting to break a record by walking up and down the mountain 9 times in 24hrs, this guy was camped at the top as a support crew. He was a bit shocked to see a group of lads with bikes at the top at half 6 in the morning and asked us, “did ya cycle up or just bring the bikes for the laugh”
It took us about 25 minutes to ride down with a good few stops, it’s about 10 minutes if you don’t stop! The descent wasn’t without it’s drama though as Damo crashed and landed on his head fairly hard, using the excuse that Rory got in his way even though the video disagrees. Kev crashed fairly hard too, along with Denis who also got a puncture. But Denis just seemed to bounce down the hill. Greg O’Keeffe blew up his rear mech and my back wheel was left a fair bit wobbly but aside from all that it was a clean run down. This was by far the best thing I have ever done on any kind of bike in my life, I would recommend it to anyone who has ever considered doing it to go and do it right now!
We had just walked up and ridden down on of the biggest mountains in the country and it wasn’t even half 7 in the morning yet! So we head into Westport for a nice fry up.
After breakfast we headed to the Derourra trail centre for a lap of the place and then headed home via Moycullen to check out Moycullen Bikeworks and were home for 5 o’clock. It felt like midnight by the time we got home, it was an awfully long day and I pretty much passed out when I got in the door!
Thanks to Tom for taking the pics, no picture could really justify how good this experience was and how steep and rocky the mountain really is! You have to do it to really understand it…
Not a bad day in the life of a mountainbiker! I’ll definately be heading back to Croagh Patrick to do this again and the sooner it is the better, i can’t wait!
Here’s a video I made with my Venom Snake Eye camera….
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