Thinking of joining the Clare Outdoor club?

Membership is now closed until the start of the new hillwalking season in September. New members joining in September 2024 are covered until 31st October 2025. Membership for existing members is valid until the 31st of October 2024 .

Joining / Renewal of membership

Full yearly membership costs €60 for those renewing and for new club members. This cost includes registration with Mountaineering Ireland (MI) and the club fees.

If you are already a member of Mountaineering Ireland or registered with another hiking club, you can join the Clare Outdoor Club as an Associate Member for €30.

Membership will reopen in September for 2024/2025. The preference is for people to join earlier in the season so their fitness, experience and ability, progresses as the season unfolds and they are ready as the walks become progressively more challenging.  Again, for same reasons, new members must start with moderate walks and progress from there to more difficult and strenuous walks.

Clare Outdoor Club is successful because of our leaders and volunteers’ willingness and enthusiasm to share their experience and love of the mountains with others. In this regard we would appreciate it if all club members and associate members could volunteer to help with club activities.  We are aware that not everyone is comfortable with leading walks but there are many ways in which people can contribute such as:

  • Lead/co-lead walks. This can be as simple as helping out on a way-marked trail walk.  Club provides subsidised access to training and excellent mentoring from more experienced leaders.
  • Be a first aider.  If leading does not suit you it may be invaluable to be a trained first aider in the group. The club regularly organises subsidised courses.
  • Organise weekends away.
  • Organise events for members. Examples in the past would be kayaking, caving, etc..
  • Write some walk or trip reports to be included in club communications.
  • Volunteer for the committee.

We would appreciate it if you could keep this in mind and step up in whatever way you feel able to contribute to the activities of your club.

Further information
For safety and insurance reasons, only members of the club may take part in club activities. These can be found on the club calendar. Once a person applies to join/renew online and pay their annual subscription, the club will then take steps to register the member with Mountaineering Ireland . You will be insured from the time you register and pay your membership fee but it can take up to 6 weeks for your MI Membership card to be delivered to Clare Outdoor Club.

As a member of Mountaineering Ireland you will receive annually four issues of the “Mountain Log” magazine which is an interesting read and full of inspiring stories of exploits on hills and mountains in Ireland and around the world, told from the perspective of members.

Minimum gear required – You must have all of the essential items listed below to
participate in a club walk:

– Hiking boots with ankle support.

– Waterproof jacket and pants.
– Walking trousers or tracksuit pants.
– Hat + gloves + Fleece / warm jersey.
– Personal first aid kit
– Headtorch + Double Survival bag.
– Food + water.
– A rucksack lined with plastic refuse bag.
– Change of clothes and towel to be left in car.
– Absolutely no runners or jeans on walks.
– A fully charged mobile phone.


Feel free to contact if you would like to discuss walks, gear or have any other queries about membership.

Membership is now closed for 2023/2024 season and will re-open in September.

Some History..

The Clare Outdoor Club was formed in 1985 by a small group of outdoor enthusiasts at a meeting in the Youth Centre in Ennis. In the early years water sports and caving were pursued in equal measure to walking and rock climbing. While currently the main emphasis is on hill walking, mountaineering and rock climbing we enjoy a wide range outdoor pursuits throughout the year. The club has grown from around 20 members in the early days to over 100 members today. You can learn more here.

Club Activities

The Club, which is still Ennis based with members from all over County Clare and neighboring counties, is run by a voluntary committee elected each year whose role is to promote and oversee the club activities for the year. A calendar of events is planned for the season which runs from the AGM in September until the Summer Party in June.

The schedule of walks includes counties Kerry, Mayo, Galway, Tipperary, Waterford, Clare and Limerick. The destination and length of the walk depends on the amount of daylight at any particular time of year with the longest walks planned for April and May. This also gives members a chance to build up ‘hill fitness’ during the darker winter months when the walks are shorter. The majority of the walks take place on a Sunday, but there are occasional Saturday walks.

Car Pooling

On the morning of a walk members assemble at the time indicated in the Club calendar at Roslevan in Ennis and from there we car pool to the start of the walk. We encourage car pooling as it means that we are bringing fewer cars to remote locations and also parking space at the start of some walks can be very limited. Depending on the destination there will be a petrol contribution payable by passengers to their driver. Leaders will advise you of the amount on the day, usually 10-15 euro


All club events are organised with the safety of members in mind. There is a checklist of items that members must bring with them on each hill walk to make sure that they are suitable dressed for the changeable weather, wearing walking boots suitable for the terrain and have adequate food and drinks. Click here for details of the equipment list.


There is a strong emphasis on training in the Club and more than half the members have undertaken navigation and/or first aid training. Throughout the year there are opportunities for members to sign up for training courses with the cost of many subsidized by the Club. Following training members have gone forward for assessment in Mountain Skills, Mountain Leader and qualified to the level of Mountain Training Provider.

Trips Away

During the year, members have an opportunity to take part in a variety of trips away which may range from a weekend in Ireland to a week abroad. Past overseas destinations have included Scotland, Wales, England, Poland, France, the Italian and French Alps, the Pyrenees, Spain, Slovenia , Austria and the Atlas mountains in  Morocco.

Individual members have attended MCI Alpine Meets and hiked and climbed in the Himalayas, Rockies and Andes; some have topped out on Mont Blanc, Ama Dablam, Mount Fuji, Kilimanjaro and other notable Alpine, African and Asian peaks.

Details of upcoming trips are circulated to members in advance so there is plenty of time to plan and save for a guaranteed adventure with many laughs along the way.

Keeping in Touch

The Club emails a regular newsletter to members with details of upcoming walks and events and ‘trip reports’ chronicling the recent exploits. In addition the club has a website – – and a ‘Clare Outdoor Club’ Facebook page

Get inspired…

Check out the Gallery section of the website to get a flavour of some of the walks and the incredible scenery and unspoilt landscape that can only be seen when you leave the car behind and pull on a pair of walking boots.

Looking forward to welcoming you on your first walk!

Jim McHale,

Chairman Clare Outdoor Club