Burns Mountain and Banagher HIll - way to go
MAP: OS of Ireland 1:50,000 Discovery 11.
TRAVEL: Bus (buseireann.ie) to Donegal town, then taxi (Michael Gallagher, 087 417 6600). Road: From Donegal Town, N15 Letterkenny road; Harvey's Point Hotel signed left in one mile; follow to Harvey's Point Hotel (OSI ref. G 966831).
WALK DIRECTIONS: Left from Harvey's Point. At T-junction, turn right and cross road to see Famine Pot in stone shed. Return to T-junction; keep ahead; right opposite Lough Eske Castle gate, up lane for two miles. At five-way split at summit of road (938827), with three gates in view, take middle track (ungated; uphill) for two miles. Down at T-junction of tracks (932857), left to metal gate and tarmac road (928860). Forward downhill for 100 yards; sharp right (Blue Stack Way 'walking man'/WM fingerpost) along road. Follow WM for three-and-a-half miles, over pass and down to road (959848). Right (WM) for one-third of a mile; cross Clady Bridge; left (WM) on lane to Harvey's Point.
LENGTH: 10 miles -- allow four to five hours.
CONDITIONS: Good tracks, roads.
DON'T MISS: Famine Pot; golden eagles of Eglish valley (if they're there!); view over Lough Eske from the pass.
REFRESHMENTS/ACCOMMODATION: Harvey's Point Hotel, Lough Eske, Co Donegal (074 972 2208; harveys point.com) -- warm, welcoming, efficient; fabulous food.
GUIDED WALKS With Pat Murphy; arrange through the hotel.
INFORMATION: Donegal Tourist Office, The Quay, Donegal (074 972 1148); donegaldirect.ie; irelandnorthwest.ie.
Information on walking-tour operators, local walks, including Discover Ireland's National Loop Walks, and walking festivals throughout Ireland can be found at discoverireland.ie/walking.