Distance: 13km / 2hrs 30mins - 3hrs, follow red arrows
Services: Clonaslee Village
Terrain: Mix of minor roads, sandy paths & woodland trails
To suit: Higher than average levels of fitness
Min. gear: Walking boots, fluids, snacks, hikling clothing
Clonaslee is at the northern gateway to the Slieve Bloom Mountains. A picturesque village, founded in the 18th century, here lies the traditional seat of the O’Dunnes. Clonaslee lies on the famous Slí Dála or Munster Way.
Directions to Trail Head
From the bridge over the Clodiagh River in the village of Clonaslee (on the R422) follow the signpost for Glenkeen. The forest entrance is on your left after 200m.
A-B Start from the entrance to the forestry in Clonaslee Village. With the Clodiagh River on your right walk towards the village – after 200m turn right at the crossroads. Walk through the village passing the Heritage Centre (stone church) on your left, and after 400m turn right onto a minor road signposted Community Centre. Pass the community centre and school on the left as you exit the village.
B-C After 1km the green loop turns right at a crossroads. You continue straight on following the red arrow.
C-D Continue to ascend along the tarred road for 4km before turning right onto a forestry roadway on your right. You join the long-distance Slieve Bloom Way here marked by yellow arrows and trekking man logo.
D-E Descend along forestry roadway and woodland track onto the banks of the Gorragh River. Turning left, you follow the river for 100m before crossing via a wooden footbridge. Follow the opposite bank of the river for 100m before swinging left onto a steep incline and joining forestry road.
E-F Follow the forestry road for over 1km before turning left onto tarred road on Mac’s Hill. Follow the tarred road for more than 1km before turning right onto a ‘green’ laneway. The laneway ends at a tarred road on top of a hill overlooking Ricket’s Rock (a stoney waterfall). You veer to the left here, still following the Slieve Bloom Way, and rejoining the green loop.
F-G After 500m you turn right at a T-junction and, almost immediately, turn left though a wooden gateway into forestry and on to a woodland trail.
G-H Follow the woodland trail to a wooden footbridge. Turn right here – it is only 300m back to the trailhead.