On a beautiful sunny Saturday afternoon hundreds gathered in Strandhill to participate in the launch of Sligo’s newest walking route – the Queen Maeve Trail.
The trail, constructed by Sligo County Council, was officially launched by Cathaoirleach Cllr Joe Queenan and received a blessing from Rev Arfon Williams and Fr Niall Ahern PP on the day.
Particular thanks was extended to the landowners who generously granted access to their land in the development of the route. Appreciation was also expressed to the designers and workmen for their diligence and skilfulness in creating a walkway along this challenging upland terrain.
“For many years, locals and visitors alike have enjoyed the walk up Knocknarea from the southern Glen side carpark. This new route compliments and expands on this route by providing access to the summit directly from Strandhill.” said Michael Carty of Sligo County Council.
The walk takes approximately 90 minutes and walkers are reminded that this walk is suitable for anyone with a moderate level of fitness, though parents are reminded that, as with all walks, it is important to provide a level of supervision of children.
The new 2.4km trail starts at Dolly’s cottage on the R292 near Strandhill, taking walkers up the Northern slopes of Knocknarea, past Megalithic and Bronze Age remains, on through Coillte forests along a raised boardwalk or ‘bog bridge’ to the summit.
“This will be the first of many new trail developments planned for the Summer” adds Carty. “Anyone, anytime, can take in the scenery of Sligo through a number of recently added walks.
“There is something special about Knocknarea, and with so many visitors expected in Sligo this Summer ahead of Yeats 150 and the Fleadh Cheoil, we want to get the word out to everyone, locals and visitors, that these walks are there for people to come and enjoy.”
The Queen Maeve Trail has been developed by Sligo County Council as part of the Border Uplands Project which is a joint venture between ICBAN, Fermanagh District Council and the County Councils of Sligo, Leitrim and Cavan.
The Project is funded under the European Union’s INTERREG IVA Cross-Border programme managed by the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB). The support from landowners, Coillte and supporting agencies making the project possible. For more, visit www.sligowalks.ie