Kippure Challenge Cycle Loop Directions
0 to 10km
Going south, turn right at The Yellow House pub and climb slowly uphill. After 1.8km go straight through a roundabout and ignore the right turn soon after – keep straight. You will pass under the M50 motorway.
After you pass The Merry Ploughboy Pub on your left there is [5km marker] a short descent before the hardest part of the climb lasting 1.5km. Once you cross a stone bridge, ignore the left turn with a sign for Glencullen and go straight uphill.
After crossing another stone bridge you come to a t-junction with the R115. Go left, uphill again. The climb is easier from here on and once you get out of the forest the views are wonderful.
10 – 20km
You reach the top and the descent on the other side slowly gets steeper.
Keep going south on the R115 on a long stretch downhill. You can see the next climb in the distance. As you descend, you pass a turnoff for Glencree. Keep straight [15km marker] and you climb again up past Lough Bray. This section is steep.
Once you reach the top, Kippure access road is on your right. Climb over the gate and continue. The first 2km is reasonably easy, but the road kicks up.
20 – 30km
The relentless steepness, narrowness of the climb, poor surface (still easily rideable on a road bike, but you will have some potholes to avoid) and exposure to the wind all work against you. Getting to the top will be a great feeling. Return the way you came, taking care with walkers on the descent [25km marker].
###Optional detour to Sally Gap###
From the main road you can go right. It is only 4km to Sally Gap crossroads, which has some terrific views. There is only a slight descent, so the extra climbing required is negligible. Return the way you came.
From Kippure gate, go left, back down the hill you climbed past Lough Bray. It’s a steep descent. Continue straight on the gradual drag up to the Featherbeds.
30 – 40km
From there you descend again through a wood. Take the right [35km marker] on Cruagh Road that you came up, just after a sharp left bend at the carpark once you emerge from the woods. Cruagh Road has a good surface and is a fun descent all the way to Rathfarnham.