Attychraan Loop - way to go
MAP: OS of Ireland 1:50,000 Discovery 74; downloadable map/instructions (highly recommended) at discover ireland.ie/walking.
TRAVEL: Rail (irishrail.ie): Caher (7 miles); Bus (buseireann.ie): Service 8 to Kilbeheny (3 miles); Road: M8 Jct 12; immediately right off N73 Mitchelstown road through Kilbeheny. Just beyond, left (brown 'King's Yard' sign); right ('National Looped Walk Trailhead'); left into Galty Castle Wood, to car park.
WALK DIRECTIONS: Up steps; follow trail (purple arrows/PA and blue arrows) beside wood. In ½ mile, right (PA) uphill through trees of Castle Hill to meet forest road. Right to King's Yard farm. Descend to cross Attychraan River; then fork right (PA) along river. Right again (PA) under Castle bridge; recross river (PA), follow track to road. Ahead to bend; up steps (PA) to car park.
LENGTH: Three miles: allow 1½ hours.
DON'T MISS: View of Galty Mountains from top of Castle Wood; horned sheep at King's Yard; mossy mill race and bridge below Galty Castle site.
REFRESHMENTS: King's Yard Farm, or picnic.
ACCOMMODATION: Deebert House Hotel, Kilmallock (063 31200; deeberthousehotel.com), or camp at King's Yard, Knocknagalty, Kilbeheny (025 84903; kingsyard.word press.com).
WALKING NEWS: Ballyhoura International Walking Festival, Co Limerick, May 1-3: ballyhouracountry. com/events.