WE continue on the L4911, crossing scenic Cappul Bridge at the head of Ardgroom Harbour. We are immediately in wild country, Tooreennamna and Tooth mountains behind us and the Iveragh mountains across Kenmare River, ahead. After 0.5km, we pass an unpaved roadway going left, with a yellow Beara Way waymark. We could make the nearby parking space our trailhead, shortening the walk by 2km.
THIS walk is best enjoyed in summer. These recent weeks, wildflowers are everywhere along the paths in Garretstown woods. Most are at their best this week. In late May, the bluebells were a little faded, but those growing in shade were a vivid, gentian blue.
WE have parked opposite the old Post Office, marked on the OS map. Before setting off, we should certainly retrace our steps to the Blackwater Bridge — we will be re-crossing it on our return, but viewing it before we start will make us aware, when we see the Blackwater River upstream, of how romantic and wild it is in this gorge.
IN Ringarogy, the peace and quiet of another era still reigns. The houses may be modern or modernised but on the lanes one rarely sees a car. There are few human artefacts to distract us from nature. Once, almost 800 people lived here; now, there are about 70. I can think of few more pleasant walks.
WHEN I walked this route, mid-March 2014, the banks of the attractive little rapids on the Slaheny River above Coolyard Bridge were being reinforced. There are many classic mountain-river rapids and waterfalls to admire on this walk.