Looking for a challenging and scenic bike route?
As all my friends and family know, Keeper Hill holds a special place in my heart. So whenever I need to make a great escape from work I will either hike, walk, bike, or run up, down, around or nearby this magical hill.
So despite the mist today I thoroughly enjoyed my escape as I hit the roads on my bike.
The route in summary of landmarks was Newport, to Ballinahinch, towards the Silvermines and then right up over Shallee (heartbreak) Hill to Killoscully, and from Killoscully to the Ballyhourigan side of Keeper Hill, straight up to the first summit, and back down over to the Doonane side of Keeper Hill, and then on home to Newport.
If you are interested in a route that goes around Keeper Hill and over Foilduff Hill and onto some undiscovered smaller roads please see my other article here.
Here follows some shots taken along the route from the Silvermines as far as the Ballyhourigan Woods. At this point I could have cycled on straight to the Doonane entrance or taken a right back down to the Newport-Killoscully road. But I wanted to stay outside having fun for longer so I headed up Keeper Hill to the first mini-summit.
The views taken from my iPhone are slightly eerie up Keeper as it was misty and I was in the clouds. I was surprised at the top to meet a lovely man out running. We stopped to chat; as you do when you meet someone up Keeper Hill to swap stories and comment on the magic 🙂
This cycle route is one of the prettiest I have done in a while and is highly recommended it as a training route.
It ticks several boxes as it is scenic, challenging, and the roads are quiet.
If you intend to follow this route up Keeper you will need a hybrid bike as the terrain from Killoscully and up the first summit of Keeper is pretty rough going. I was slipping a bit on the wet pedals so better grip is recommended.
You will need to bring water with you (at least 1L) and one or two small snacks should suffice; for example some dried fruit, a gel, a home-made energy bar or a banana. Electrolytes shouldn’t be necessary and I don’t as a rule recommend sports drinks. Water and your carbohydrate snack will suffice.
Please share your feedback if you get your adventurer on and complete this route.
Here is the link for the road map; I am unable to add a mapmyroute map so I have redrawn a Google map.
PS I took to the hills again several days later and did this route in reverse, while also heading up Keeper Hill a bit further to catch the fabulous autumn views. If you haven’t hiked or biked up Keeper on a clear day, I highly recommend it for the stunning views that take in 9 counties! Try counting them 🙂