The Sturrall Headland is one of the most outstanding sea cliff features in Ireland it is a true monster of a headland sitting isolated and far from the real world. It sits equidistant between Glencolmcille Village to the South and the An Port road end to the North. The ridge is approx 800m long and 180m at the highest point.
The first recorded climb to the summit was by WP (Walter Parry) Haskett Smith in about 1890. His route ascended the skyline ridge from the landward side and provides a very exposed 400m mountain ridge scramble with some very loose rock to this excellent summit.
The base of the Sturrall Headland is an extremely inaccessible and foreboding place to visit. Access is by a steep scary scramble down the north spur followed by a 300m sea passage deep into the realms of chaos.
The best approach is by clifftop walk from An Port to the north.
The ridge is climbed in two very distinct parts. The first being from sea level to the summit which follows a knife-edge ridge. (Iain Miller, Theresa Hughes, Aaron Entringer 17/03/12) The second half is an airy scramble along the ridge towards land, from the summit follow the ridge past several towers and maximum exposure for approx 350m of outstanding alpine ridge climbing back to land. (Hasket Smith 1890)
A complete ascent of the Sturrall is a bit of an adventurous affair with a 6km round trip walk-in, 300m steep scramble descent to sea level, a 200m sea passage in the outer realms and a 750m XS rock climb which is unescapable until the half-way point.
The details of the first ascent of the Sturrall can be downloaded in the Donegal Sea Stack guidebook.
Luke Climbs the Sturrall
Nikki Bradley Climbs The Sturrall