The Arboretum Trail

The Arboretum Walking Trail 2.5km. Red dotted line ........ on map.
This walk in 2.5km long and should take about 45 minutes to complete.
On your way…. Upon leaving the Visitor Centre at point 1 proceed eastwards along the Gardeners stroll consider yourself at point 2 on the map now. This route is marked as a dotted red line on your map. Arboretum Walking Trail picture 4At Point 3 you will find a viewing point beside one of the Red deer paddocks. The farm carries a stock of over 700 deer. They are farmed on 100 hectares of prime pasture. They will not always be visible from this point as the stock are rotated between the many paddocks on a regular basis. The winding pathway which in spring is surrounded by swathes of Daffodils, Crocus and Snowdrops, leads to the start of the Arboretum at Point 4 which is also the entrance to the Towards Tertiary Garden. Arising from research and writing by Professor Frank Mitchell, we decided to represent trees that grew in Ireland as far back as sixty-five million years ago. Also within the Towards Tertiary Garden are examples of rare and threatened European trees and shrubs. They are interspersed amongst the previously mentioned plantings and gain from the shelter of more mature screening conifers. These rare species are threatened across Europe by habitat destruction and felling. Upon leaving the Teritary Garden at point 5 take a right turn and head along the main entrance walk. On your right is an example of our many ditches that have become an invaluable habitat and breeding ground for the Common frog whose population is growing within the Park. Point 6 is reached at the end of the long straight you have covered by turning left onto the Lackadotia Walk. On the eastern boundary to your right is a small stream that accommodates some brown trout throughout the year but more importantly acts as a spawning area for many more trout in late autumn. Now turning westwards at point 7 along the Abannban River which is on your right, outside the boundary fence you can compare two quite different stretches of water local to one another. The name “Abannban” reflects the historic use of low lying river meadows as pasture, most probably in the relatively level area of the lower park and further downstream. Brown trout of surprising size are occasionally spotted in this stretch, as are Grey Herons, Moorhens, Mallard and some most striking aquatic insects such as large dragonflies or spectacular damselflies of red and blue.  Fullaght Fiadh picture along the Arboretum Walking Trail You will soon come across another shelter which is situated beside the Peistin Bog Bridge at Point 8 on the map. The name “Peistin bog” is derived from one of its inhabitants the Yellow eel which is found throughout the park waterways sometimes in boggy pools that it reaches by struggling overland on wet nights. At Point 9 on the Cloghboolabeg Bridge the name of the townland of which the Park is a large part is reached. The Trail turns left along the Serpentine Walk or to the right past the Herb Rich Meadow. The trail you take is to the left and as you meander take time to appreciate the park from a variety of viewpoints. As you come Close to the end of the Serpentine Walk you have discovered point 10 and a Bronze Age cooking site known as a Fullaght Fiadh which is on your left. Underway again and you come across the main Park entrance walk, taking a right and then by a short cut through the Gardeners Stroll you have returned to the Visitor Centre.

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