Are we there yet? – Stairway to Heaven (Cuilcagh Mountain)
For our final walk of the year we decided to go slightly further a field, to beautiful County Fermanagh and walk the Stairway to Heaven.
Cuilcagh mountain is located on the border between County Fermanagh and County Cavan.
We parked at the base of the mountain, costing about 5 Euros, and bathroom facilities can be found across the road at the Marble Arch Caves Geopark, the walk takes a couple of hours so we recommend using these facilities before you start your walk.
It is also important to make sure you have the correct clothing for this walk, especially if you are doing it in the winter. The day of our walk, it was sunny but cold when we started and hail stones when we were coming off the mountain. Footwear is very important, as sections of the boardwalk were quite slippy.
The Cuilcagh Boardwalk Trail meanders through a large blanket bog, with a steep climb giving fantastic views of the surrounding low land areas. The first part of the walk is through a fascinating limestone landscape, where there is remnants of the Irelands’ past including abandoned cottages and dry stone walls. The path then changes to the blanket bog where the boardwalk has been installed to cross the beautiful bog where in the spring there is an abundance of bog cotton. Its approximately 4km before you start your ascent to the summit of Cuilcagh, the ascent is steep and you may need to take a few breaks on the way (we did, and it is a great chance to look at the view). As we worked our way up the landscape changes from blanket bog to rugged boulders, we finally reached the viewing platform where there are breath-taking views of the surrounding landscape.
We took a break for a coffee and some peanut m&ms (always a good walking snack) and of course to take in the view. It really is unbelievably beautiful, and well worth the hike. This hike is approximately 4 miles one way.
We loved this walk and it was a great way to end our years walking.