Stack's Mountains

The Stack's Mountains are a mountain range about seven kilometres northeast of Tralee, along the N69 road in County Kerry in Ireland.

Stack's Mountains
Stack's Mountains from space.jpg
The Stack's Mountains from the International Space Station, with Tralee at bottom left.
Highest point
Elevation355 m (1,165 ft)
Coordinates52°19′08″N 9°35′21″W / 52.318779°N 9.589144°W / 52.318779; -9.589144Coordinates: 52°19′08″N 9°35′21″W / 52.318779°N 9.589144°W / 52.318779; -9.589144
CountryRepublic of Ireland
Provinces of IrelandMunster
A wind farm on Stack's Mountain in the Stack's Mountains.

The highest peak in the range is Crusline, which is 355 metres high. It is the highest peak in Kerry north of Tralee (higher than Knockanore at 267metres and Maulin at 217 metres). It is also the 189th tallest peak in Munster, and the 507th in Ireland[1] Nearby summits include Ballincollig Hill (353 m), Beennageeha Mountain (321 m), and Stack's Mountain (Irish: Cnoc an Stacaigh; 323 m).[2][3][4]

Landscape and natureEdit

The range is characterised by moorland and limited open pasture, with 4,700 hectares of young coniferous forest plantations of mainly Sitka spruce – with Japanese larch, pines, firs and cedars, along with some broadleaved trees such as birch, ash, alder, oak, willow, sycamore, and holly – most managed by the forest management company, Coillte.[3][5]

The local conifer forests, open heather moors, and grassland are habitats for fauna such as the hen harrier, Irish hare, red fox, red grouse, snipe, cuckoo, and meadow pipit. The neighbouring Glanaruddery Mountains to the southeast are divided from the Stack's Mountains by the valley of the Smearlagh River.[3][5][6]

Energy resourcesEdit

The peat company, Bord na Móna, extracted about 250,000 tons of turf from Lyreacrompane Bog between 1938 and 1963. Nowadays, turf is harvested by local people under turbary arrangements, using hopper machines instead of the traditional slane. There are also wind farms on Stack's Mountain and Ballincollig Hill.[3][5]


The Lyreacrompane Development Association in cooperation with Coillte have created the four-mile "Mass Path and River Walk" along the banks of the Smearlagh River, and the ten mile "Fionn MacCumhaill" trek through open countryside and Coillte forest plantations.[3][7]

The seven-mile Smearlagh River, which is a tributary of the River Feale, is formed in the Stack's Mountains and Glanaruddery Mountains from the Broghane Stream, Dromaddamore River, Glashoreag River, and Lyreacrompane River.[6] The Smearlagh meets the Feale at Inchymagilleragh, three miles east of Listowel, where the confluence is known as "The Joinings". The Smearlagh is a swift river that provides good salmon and sea trout fishing.[7][8]


  1. ^ Crusline characteristics and 3D fly-around
  2. ^ Stack's-mountain Placenames Database of Ireland. Retrieved: 2013-03-19.
  3. ^ a b c d e Forest Management Plan: Stack Mountains Forest: Forest Code: KY03 Coillte. Retrieved: 2013-03-19.
  4. ^ Stack's Mountains Coillte. Retrieved: 2013-03-19.
  5. ^ a b c Landscape Character Assessment prepared for the Renewable Energy Strategy 2012 & Adopted/Proposed Archaeological Landscapes Kerry County Council Planning Policy Unit, p. A-109. November 2012.
  6. ^ a b Explanations to Accompany Sheet 162 of the Maps of the Geological Survey of Ireland Geological Survey (1859), p. 5. Retrieved: 2013-03-20.
  7. ^ a b Lyreacrompane Sliabh Luachra Rural Development Group, September 2001.
  8. ^ Rivers of Ireland: A Flyfisher's Guide Peter O'Reilly. Merlin Unwin Books (2002), p. 269. ISBN 1-873674-53-8.

External linksEdit