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Overlooking the city of Dublin is Ticknock Hill. Ticknock is a favourite escape for Dublin residents as it is only 30 minutes from the city centre. Ticknock is the gateway to the Dublin Mountains and it also offers an extensive network of purpose-built mountain biking trails ranging in difficulty and technicality. Why not try out some mountain biking (or MTB) this weekend?
There are two different trail networks on Ticknock Mountain. This gives you a huge amount of trails to explore!
On the north side of the hill, starting at the main Ticknock Carpark, are the Coillte Mountain Bike Trail. This network is 13km long and includes a total of six different trails of a variety of difficulties. Whether you are a day-one biker or are an experienced shredder there is something for you here. Coillte have graded the trails either red or black to signify the difficulty of each trail. There is also a written description at the start of each trail which tells you what to expect so you do not get a nasty shock! There are two upper trails, “Afterburner” and “Blazing Saddles” which offer stunning views over Dublin city top the north and the Wicklow Mountains to the south.
The Coillte trails are free to ride. A prior experience level is recommended in order to get the most out of your spin. if you have any questions about the trails call into the biking.ie cabin at the car park.
Coillte Mountain Bike Trail Map
On the south side of the hill, you will find the Glencullen Adventure Park (or The G.A.P). This progressive bike park is located near the Wicklow border and offers a variety of trails catered to a more experienced mountain biker. The GAP are a “gravity park”. This means that the grading system is a direct reflection of the technicality of the terrain and the skill level required to ride each trail. So for this reason the grading system is different from others. All this to say; if you can just about ride the black Coillte trail we would advise steering clear of black trails in The GAP as they are more technically demanding.
The GAP Mountain Bike Trail Map
As well as the official MTB trails on Ticknock there are myriad “off-piste” trails to explore. These are ungraded trails that have been created by other mountain bikers and are not to be tackled on rental bikes or by anyone with minimal experience. Since these trails are ungraded you could easily find yourself faced with an obstacle that is well above your ability level. We would advise seeing clear of these until you are confident on all the other trails. We would also encourage you to seek out an experienced mountain biker to show you the trails to ride. Trailforks is an excellent resource that has all of the different trails on Ticknock as well as providing some information on them.
Ticknock Mountain Bike Trail Map
The GAP and Biking.ie both offer a bike rental service.
€55 for a Full-Suspension Nukeproof Mega, incl. a full-face helmet, elbow pads and kneepads.
Bike Rental at The GAP
€35 for a Hardtail 29er Vitus Sentier
€45 for a Full-Suspension Vitus Mythique
€65 for an e-Bike Vitus Sommet
Bike Rental from Biking.ie
Both the Coillte trails and The GAP are easily accessible by car from Dublin and both have large car park facilities. The GAP car park costs €2 to enter and the parking at Ticknock Car Park is free.
The GAP: You can get the 44b Dublin Bus from Dundrum Luas stop to the entrance to the GAP.
Ticknock Coillte Mountain Bike Trails: It is, unfortunately, more difficult to get to the Coillte Trails by public transport. It’s not impossible though! You can get the 16 Dublin Bus to the bottom of Ticknock Road which is a 20-minute walk from the Biking.ie cabin.
Trails Café: At the main Ticknock car park, you will find Trails Café. They provide a wide range of different high-quality food and drinks for you to have before or after your hike.
Timbertrove: The Timertrove Country Store & Café is located at the foothills of the Dublin Mountains with spectacular views overlooking Dublin Bay. They offer breakfast, lunch, and dessert items including our famous traditional scones.
The Blue Light: One of our favourite places to finish a summer mountain bike spin is at the Blue Light. Possibly the pub with the best views in Dublin the blue light has a great selection of beers and food.
The Hazel House: The Hazel House is located right beside Tibbradden forest, but you’d be forgiven if you thought you had stepped into a rural café in Wicklow. As well as serving lovely coffee and treats, the Café also hosts wine and pizza nights during the warm summer evenings where they serve up freshly cooked wood-fired pizza! A must after a day of biking in the mountains.
The GAP Kitchen: Part of the Glencullen adventure park, The GAP kitchen is a go-to spot if you are after a big feed in the hills. As well as great coffee, the GAP is known for is locally sourced and homemade beef, veggie, and brekkie burgers.
Liked this article? Check out these:
Best Café’s in the Dublin Mountains
Mountain Biking on The Mourne Coastal Route
5 Foods Every Athlete Should Eat
By Matthew McConnell
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