For your hiking trip, the following items are essential:
Walking boots (preferably leather) offering good ankle support and boots should be waterproof.
Good quality waterproof jacket and trousers (preferably breathable)
The importance of good boots cannot be stressed too much. All mountains and hills in Ireland are subject to frequent rainfall, and after rain they often become wet and muddy. Good strong ankle high boots are essential to avoid wet uncomfortable feet, and the ankle support also offers invaluable protection on uneven ground.
Leather boots perform best in Ireland, as they can be waxed regularly if necessary to maintain waterproof qualities. Many clients find that fabric boots do not offer sufficient support or water-proofing in bad conditions.
We do not recommend you wear new boots on a walking holiday, as blisters are often a problem if boots are not worn in.
The most common injury on the Irish hills is to the ankle or lower leg, usually resulting from a simple slip or fall. This is less likely to happen if you wear comfortable walking boots with good ankle support and a rugged sole.
If possible – it is a tremendous advantage to have “breathable” waterproofs. “Gore-Tex” was the original and very pricy option in these kinds of waterproofs – but thankfully – there are now a number of less expensive and just as good breathable options. We recommend jackets with a good hood and good neck collar and a zip with cover over it to limit heat leakage. Pockets should be large enough to hold bits and pieces without straining or bulging. An inside pocket that is large enough to hold a map is also a great advantage.
Waist high trousers (perhaps with reinforced backside and/or knees although not essential) should have a zip on the side of the leg to make it easier to get them on quickly over walking boots. If you are caught in heavy rain with good waterproofs, you should remain dry. Unfortunately, many people do not realise that waterproof jackets and trousers deteriorate over time and discover this when it is too late!! Few garments remain waterproof for more than five years; many deteriorate in three years or less. Experience has taught us that rain capes are NOT a good idea for walking in Ireland.
Rucksack or Daypack
Should be large enough to carry your daily requirements – but not so big you are tempted to carry too much! Padded shoulder straps are essential and a padded hip/waistband gives added comfort and support.
Make sure that straps are all adjustable, so that the weight is evenly distributed and carried on the hips rather than the shoulders.
A mesh panel on the back will avoid a “sticky” or sweaty back. Experience has shown us over the years that 2 or 3 separate pockets or compartments make it easier to divide your contents for quick and easy finding!
The following is our “Check List” for items we recommend you bring:
For your rucksack
Waterproof map case
Warm Hat and Sun Hat
Water bottle / Thermos flask (for hot liquids)
Lunchbox (or tupperware), knife, spoon and beaker (or something to drink from)
Swimsuit! (We do get good weather from time to time!)
Batteries for camera
Sit Mat or plastic bag to sit on while eating picnic
Personal first aid kit: (to carry in your rucksack)
Blister Treatment (Compeed, Second skin or Moleskin)
Arnica for bruising or sprains
Disinfectant cream for minor cuts
Band Aids /Elastoplast for minor cuts
After sun-cream (Aloe Vera)
Insect or Midge RepellentAfter-bite
Passport (visa if necessary)
Copy of your Insurance Cover
Money (some cash for your first few days)
Suitcase Labels (on all bags)
Personal Toiletries, soap and face cloth (wash cloths).
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Ireland Walk Hike Bike
Collis Sandes House, Co. Kerry, Ireland.