Roadway>> The Sallygap

Starting where we left off yesterday at the bottom of the Wicklow Gap, we briefly head north before turning off for the signposted route 'Sally Gap'. The Sally Gap is the second of two routes to cross the Wicklow mountains and we'll be travelling it from east to west.

The route is some 25 miles in length and is the highest public road in the Republic of Ireland. The road was built by the British Army in an attempt to open up the mountainous region in a bid to find the rebels who had gone to ground after the 1798 rebellion.

The climb is moderate, you do realise your always climbing but it's not enough to hinder your progress or put extra strain on the car.

One of my favourite road signs that translates to 'Skids Ahead'. True story.

The greens that surround lower area of the route are so quintessentially Irish. It's no wonder Johnny Cash wrote the song 'Forty Shades of Green' about our small republic.

The higher we climb, the more the landscape begins to clear. It may look like an attractive route but in the heights of winter, this road is impassable.

Coming around the side of a small hill, the gap opens in front of us.

No markings, no kerbs, no safety barriers, just you and the open road.

It's a while before we are greeted by these wind-swept trees, one of the only sights on the route that breaks up the stunning vistas that surround you.

Some random rocks for you not to hit.

Once clear of the treeline, the gap once again opens up.

The road is in good condition but the harder you push, the more the road test's your abilities.

Off camber corners, blind crests, rapid dips and rises are all regular features to test your skill and bravery.

This would appear to be the highest point and as they say, it's all downhill from here …

The sun begins to shine again as we begin the trek back towards sea level.

It'll come as no surprise that this route was a stage of the Circuit of Ireland rally back in the 1980's. I would love to see the real Circuit of Ireland return here, just to hear the sounds bounce and echo through the valley.

For a brief moment, the lack of greenery takes me somewhere further away than Ireland.

The biggest danger on these roads is meeting someone coming the opposite direction with the same intentions as yourself. In saying that all these routes I've covered can be thoroughly enjoyed at safe speeds that don't even exceed the local speed targets limits.

What I'd give to experience the road under race circumstances. Can you imagine the feeling of trying to put down the power over this section ?

The re-emergence of the colour green notifies you we're almost at the end.

As road markings and signage re-appear, I'm left trying to comprehend what we'd just covered.

There are no two ways about it, because even at regular pace these roads are spectacular. Regardless of speed, you can enjoy them for so many different reasons which is what makes them great roads. These are only three routes I've covered out of countless others around this small island. Molls Gap, Healy Pass and many others are just a few that deserve a mention. Hopefully for the next drives week, I'll be able to get my hands on something a bit more extreme to take these routes in.


Drives Week



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Now that is aome awsome road


How about wallpapers of some of the pictures? they look stunning!


WOW!!! i wish this road was my everyday way to work!!!!


just absolutely epic ,beautiful road


Not a fan of that big bump right on the corner. You would have to drive this road every day for a year before learning it good enough to do 9/10


This is an amazing report. One more location to visit once in my life. I have the same type of road where I use to live in France but the cops are all over so you can't really speed that much unless you are on a motorcycle :)


Absolutely breath-taking. I must visit Ireland someday, driving all over by day and emptying Guinness kegs by night.


I'm simply amazed by every Roadway. Your coverage makes us all wanna get in a great car and just drive.


thats it I'm going up the gap this weekend , in something.............

nice one paddy



No kidding. And that my dd was something other than a fixie.


Reminds me the "massif central" (Auvergne, France) where are living my grands... Living in the Perigord, I think it could be interesting to do the same process...


I put my Eg6 on its side up there 2 years ago haha, great road :):)


Great look Paddy, this road could just a easily say 100kmph! Locals called it the 'town best'. I was never able to hit it in my Nissan micro rental...


I done my Gaisce Silver Award Hike up there....Savage Place


I love driving this road, my girlfriend doesn't like it so much though