Drink in the view from Crucspullagadaun
Crucspullagadaun loop walk
Level of difficulty Moderate
Time 2-3 hours
Trail Surface Quiet country roads and forest track
What to Bring Comfortable walking shoes or runners, rain gear (just in case), camera, water and snack.
Crucspullagadaun hill is situated just off the N60 close to Manulla village. From a distance it looks unremarkable, but the road that meanders up the hill from Manulla gives exceptional views of West Mayo. The route is all on tarred country road, apart from a short section through the forest.
Start from the Manulla Football Club where there is a map and information board about the walk, and continue along the road, with the football ground on your left. Turn right at the end of the football grounds and follow the tarred road uphill for 1.5 km until you reach a fork in the road. This uphill section is demanding, but as you make your way uphill you will be rewarded as extensive views appear on all sides. Alternatively, if you want to avoid walking the uphill section, you can drive up the hill and park your car at one of the lay-bys near the top, making sure not to block the road or any gateways.
Once you get to the fork in the road there is a circuit around the hill that includes a forest section. You will also pass through Drunganagh village. The Ox Mountains and the lakes at Pontoon can be seen in the distance.
At the fork in the road take a right and follow the road for 1.5k before turning left into the forest, keep left at a junction in the centre of the forest and left again when you emerge from the forest onto the tarred road, the trail continues along the western face of the hill, where you will have extensive views of North and West Mayo, including Lough Conn, the Nephin Mountains, Achill island, Clare Island, Croagh Patrick, the Partry Mountains and Lough Carra. Carrowmore Lake nestles under the heather-covered hill.
The trail returns to the fork in the road from where you retrace your steps back down hill to reach the football club.
How to get there
The Crucspullagadaun Loop Walk starts from the Manulla football club grounds. If you are travelling from Castlebar, take the N60 Claremorris Road.
After around 5k, lookout for finger post sign for Manulla Football Club. There is plenty of parking outside the club grounds.
Tom Carolan works for South West Mayo Development Company as Recreation Officer. His job involves the design, construction, and promotion of recreational trails. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
This article is the eighth in the Living section Walk of the Month series, which describes a different Mayo walk at the start of each month.