Paddle and Pedal takes on Ballyhoura MTB trails.
I had a course scheduled in Kinsale Co. Cork on Valentines weekend and no classes penciled in on the Friday, so I decided to hit the road early and stop at Ballyhoura Mountain Bike Trail park in Co. Limerick on the way.
I had heard a lot about Ballyhoura in the media and I was keen to visit and see what it was all about. It is a three and a half hour drive from Ballina so a one off day trip there is not really an option but as I was passing and I had time-it was a perfect opportunity to visit this specially built MTB park. With sea kayaks on the roof and mountain bike loaded into the back of the Paddle & Pedal van, I set off for Cork via Ballyhoura bike park.
This is Irelands biggest trail park with over 90kms of trails and looped routes ranging from 6km to over 50km. Facilities on site include toilets, showers, bike hire and a bike wash station.
I arrived at about lunch time and the weather was deteriorating as the day progressed with some heavy showers. Undeterred, I geared up and hit for the Brown trail. Measuring approx 16.5km it was the perfect length for a 1.5 hour ride. A nice mix of climbing, downhill, board walk and single track. The routes are all well maintained and very well marked. It was a pretty cool ride and if it had been drier I would have happily waited until dark, but I couldn't resist the lure of a hot shower when I got back to the trailhead.
Entry is €5 per day
Bike wash €2
Check out Trail Riders for onsite bike hire. The guys are also very helpful with info on the trails and facilities.
David Horkan from Paddle & Pedal. Posting info on various outdoor adventures in Mayo and around Ireland.