Sally Gap Cycle Loop Directions
0 to 10km
If facing south, turn right on Willbrook Road 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 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 fantastic.
10 – 20km
You reach the top of the hill – The Featherbeds.
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.
###Optional detour to Kippure###
###6.8km return – approx 210m of climbing###
Climb over the gate and continue. The first 2km is reasonably easy, but the road kicks up. 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.
Otherwise ride straight on.
It is only 3.9km to Sally Gap.
20 – 30km
There is a very slight descent to the crossroads.
Turn left at Sally Gap and enjoy the continuing descent [25km marker]. You soon reach a 1.5km uphill section beside Lough Tay which rises 70m. The other side is a very steep descent before easing off.
30 – 40km
When you reach a t-junction (after going through a crossroads) at the end, turn left on the R755, signed Enniskerry Take the second right, between two houses, signed Newtown Mount Kennedy. From here it is 6.8km to the Great Sugar Loaf.
After you cross a small stone bridge, keep left at the first junction [35km marker]. Take the first left turn after this and keep straight.
40 – 50km
When you reach a t-junction, turn left and you will see the car park for Great Sugar Loaf a few metres away.
Continue straight down the hill and turn right at the t-junction. This road can be busy. Continue downhill and take the first left turn. This goes around a sharp bend.
Turn left at the next t-junction that you reach at a small green and go uphill. At the top, when the main road turns sharply right [45km marker], the left turn is for Powerscourt Waterfall. Otherwise continue on the main road.
###Optional detour to Powerscourt Waterfall###
###6.0km return – approx 100m of climbing###
###The turnoff bends left. Keep on this road all the way past several turnoffs. You go down a steep hill and then climb one up to the waterfall. You can cycle to within yards of the base of the Waterfall. Return the same way.###
Continue down a hill and stay on the main road as it bends sharply left and goes over a narrow bridge. There is a short, steep climb on the other side. At the top, the entrance to Powerscourt is on the left. Otherwise keep going straight.
Continue down the hill to enter Enniskerry. Go through the main square and turn right. After a few metres the main road bends right. Take the left turn that goes straight ahead up the hill.
Go up this hill and turn right at the t-junction at the top.
50 – 60km
You keep going uphill and pass Kilternan ski slope on your left near the top of the hill. Keep going and [55km marker] 4.1km later you reach the village of Stepaside. Cycle right through.
Soon after Stepaside you go through a roundabout, and then through a crossroads and then over the M50. You enter the city here and cycle through the suburb of Sandyford before a long descent into Dundrum.
60 – 64km
Go through the crossroads at Dundrum – you can see the shopping centre ahead on the left.
Go straight along the narrow road, being careful of the traffic and pedestrians. After passing the large shopping centre and going through a crossroads, you keep going downhill and follow the road around a left turn to a t-junction.
Turn right here and take the next left after a few metres (alternatively, go straight ahead and then right uphill around a corner. At the top, turn left. This option avoids a busy junction). You go up a short rise and then along a flat straight.
After 750m, turn left by The Bottle Tower pub. Follow the cycle lane right around the car park and then turn left at the t-junction. Keep on this road for 2.0km to reach The Yellow House Pub in Rathfarnham.