The Legend of Priest’s Leap: A Breathtaking Mountain Pass

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By jeroen

Priest's Leap

This destination, shrouded in mists that enhance its mystical atmosphere, promises a journey through the pass that is as mystical as the legends that surround it. My experience at Priests Leap was remarkable – a blissful crossing that made me realize the value of the tranquility found in the off-season, and the importance of choosing the right equipment; large campers would struggle here. With environmental photos and added videos of the drive, I offer you a glimpse into the practical reality of this route, which, though straightforward, can pose a necessary challenge when crossing paths with an oncoming vehicle.

Priest’s Leap is a mountain pass in Ireland, it is located on the border between the counties of Cork and Kerry, not far from the town of Kenmare in County Kerry. It is a narrow road that runs between the mountains of Cnoc Baoi and Caher Mountain and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding valleys and hills.

There is a legend that the name Priest’s Leap comes from a priest who jumped over the pass during the English occupation of Ireland in the 17th century to escape English soldiers. According to the story, the priest was fleeing the soldiers because he had secretly held mass, which was forbidden under English rule. He was pursued to the edge of the pass, where he jumped over the edge and escaped to safer territory.

Priest’s Leap is a popular destination for hikers and nature lovers because of its beautiful landscapes and the opportunity to hike in the surrounding mountains. The area is also known for its wildlife, including wild deer, golden eagles, and other birds.

If you want to visit Priest’s Leap, it is important to be careful while driving on the narrow road and to watch for any passing vehicles. The area is also isolated, so it is advisable to have sufficient supplies and a map on hand in case of an emergency. (backpackers and bikepackers)

Unfortunately, the name of the priest who jumped over Priest’s Leap is not known because the story is mainly a legend. There are no historical documents that confirm the legend or mention the name of the priest. It is therefore possible that the story is entirely fictional and was simply created to give the area more mystique.


Priest’s Leap is a favorite route for motorbike enthusiasts and overlanders (up to a maximum of 5.5 meters). However, the road through Priest’s Leap is very narrow and winding, with steep inclines and declines. This makes it difficult and unsafe to navigate the area with a large vehicle such as a motorhome or caravan. Furthermore, there are few places to turn or park on the road, and little space to pass oncoming vehicles.

If traveling with a large vehicle, it is important to be cautious and thoroughly explore the road before deciding to take the pass. In some cases, it may be better to park at a nearby location and explore the pass on foot.

Tales of Priest’s Leap: Ghostly Apparitions in the Irish Mountains

Another interesting fact about Priest’s Leap is that the area is also known for its apparitions. There have been multiple reports of spooky figures haunting the area, especially at night. Some even claim to have seen the ghost of the unknown priest who made the leap over the pass to escape English soldiers during the occupation of Ireland.


The view when crossing Priest’s Leap


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