Discipline distances making up the 154km course:
1. Running: 34km approx 2. Cycling: 120km approx (All on sealed roads)
For more information on the route elevation, category climbs and other route details check out the course profile here. We will be updating the details here soon.
Stage 1: Run (30km)
Starting on Glassilaun beach at daybreak you will make your way to Killary Fjord and along the rough Famine greenway which hugs the shore. The mountains of Connemara and south Mayo soar either side of you. You will then begin your ascent into the unmarked Maamturk mountains, along the aptly named Col of Despondency. Descending into Leenane village you will overlook the fjord once more as you follow the Western Way trail to your first transition at Killary Adventure Centre.
Stage 2: Cycle (107km)
The cycle begins along the shore of Killary Fjord passing through Leenane village and into the Maam valley. Once again mountains loom above you on every side and houses are sparse. Turning into the Maamtrasna valley the route passes Lough Nafooey and Lough Mask before turning at Tourmakeady bringing you over the mountain pass to the Erriff river. Here the route follows the Erriff back to Aashleagh Falls, along the north side of Killary Fjord and into the stunning Delphi valley.
Leaving the Delphi Valley and heading for Drummin there are impressive hills to climb and extreme care needed on the downhills. Expect severe corners and narrow country roads. On to a gradual climb (all on sealed roads) to the back of Croagh Patrick and the next transition area.
Stage 3: Mountain run (4.5km)
Though your legs may be staging a protest but there is no completion without the traditional ascent and descent of Croagh Patrick (764m). Stay on the path and take care on the top section of this mountain as it has a lot of loose stones.
Killary Gaelforce would like to acknowledge and thank all of the land owners of the Croagh Patrick mountain for the continued support of Gaelforce West, without which the event could not happen. Killary Gaelforce would like to share the ethos of care on Croagh Patrick with you our competitors. We ask that all competitors ensure that they 'Leave No Trace' on the mountain and that what they bring up with them MUST come down. We also encourage you to read the Mayo Mountain Rescue Safety Guidelines when climbing Croagh Patrick.
Stage 5: Cycling (11.0km)
Always obey the rules of the road. The route tracks back to the N59 which competitors follow into Westport town and the finish line.
Stage 6: Final run
Bring your bike on to the green area to the final bike drop and make the final short run to the finish line at Westport Leisure Park in the town centre.