Croagh Patrick Pilgrimage from Dunsandle-25/07/1960

Reek Sunday, is 28th July 2013. Every year thousands of pilgrims climb Croagh Patrick outside Westport in County Mayo. These days, most people arrive by car. But, that was not always the case.

Picture the scene if you will...young and old climbing aboard a specially scheduled train at 9.40pm on Saturday, 30th July 1960 from Dunsandle Railway Station. No doubt an air of anticipation and excitement as they waited on the Dunsandle platform for the train that departed Loughrea some minutes earlier.

People travelled all the way to Westport, County Mayo (via Athenry) that night, scheduled to arrive at 2.05am. They climbed Croagh Patrick (most did so bare foot) as the dawn of a new day broke (saying a few prayers along the way) and returned on the 6.45pm train from Westport that evening, Sunday, 31st July 1960 returning to Dunsandle late that night.

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People from the area did this for years. Have you or one of your family done this? Please email us at and share your story.