We want you to have the best experience possible when you’re out and about along the Sheep’s Head Way. Please follow the general guidelines for hillwalking and also those specific to the Sheep’s Head Way.
Before you go
- Pick a trail route to suit your fitness level, experience and the time you have available.
- Familiarise yourself with the area and route by looking at maps and local information.
- Check for changing weather conditions and the local tide times for coastal sections.
- Be aware of dusk times and plan to finish your walk well before then.
- Do not hesitate to seek advice from local people as they know their area best.
- Leave details of your plans with somebody and don’t forget to contact that person later to say that you have returned safely.
What to take
- A waterproof and preferably wind proof jacket.
- Wear walking boots or shoes suitable for use on rough and wet ground.
- A good supply of food and liquids.
- A fully charged mobile phone. It should not be relied on as a safety aid as there maybe poor network coverage.
- A printed map in addition to your online maps.
Even in the mild climate of West Cork it is sensible to bring extra clothing and all weather gear as conditions can vary and weather can change quickly. It is also advised to bring some essential safety items.
- Map with water proof cover
- Compass or gps device
- Head torch & spare batteries
- Knife or muti use tool
- Sunscreen & midge repellent
- First aid kit & foil blanket
- Signalling whistle
Taking care whilst walking the Sheep’s Head Way
- Leave the fences, walls, grasslands, fields, livestock etc. unmolested and the paths, signs and markers as you found them.
- Please respect our farmers’ right to make a living and do not hinder farming activities.
- Where a landowner has been kind enough to allow access across a field, please keep to the edges of it.
- There are times when the Walk leads you close to residential houses – please respect people’s privacy.
- There are also times when the Walk goes near cliff edges; while there are warning signs at such places, please be very careful, as there are other hazards if you stray off the signposted Way.
- Please guard against the risk of fires on Coillte lands and any wooded area. The same precaution applies to the hills.
- We strongly advise that walkers do not attempt the more remote parts of the Walk on their own.
- Take great care when walking along public roadways. always listen out for oncoming traffic and be aware of blind bends.
The Sheep’s Head Way supports the principles of ’Leave No Trace’ and we encourage you to minimise your impact on the environment whilst maximising your enjoyment. For more information, visit www.leavenotraceireland.org
- Do not bring your dog on your walk. They are not permitted.
- Do not attempt to drive, pedalled or powered, vehicles on the walking routes.
- Do not leave any litter, debris or other waste. Bring it back for proper disposal.
- Do not park vehicles in gateways or across access paths.
For your Safety
During gales or bad weather conditions and for the inexperienced walker at any time, we suggest an alternative route using county council roads from the Crimea Cross to the Cove. This is on the north and western side of the peninsula, and is duly noted on the map.
During storms, gales and special weather alerts, stay away from coastal paths, cliffs, piers and sea fishing areas. Freak waves are not uncommon.
Do not attempt to cross streams in flood conditions or when in fast flow after torrential rains.
Do not walk the higher or more remote or mountainous routes in poor weather conditions.
Keep to the way marked routes and don’t stray from paths.
Please be aware of unguarded cliffs, bogs and ponds,
Children must be accompanied by an adult.
Care should be exercised at all times to avoid accidents as neither the Sheep’s Head Way Ltd., local committees, landowners, nor any other people or agencies can be held responsible for any accidents or injuries which might occur due to usage of the Sheep’s Head Way.