The Mushera Moor Trail

The Mushera Moor Walking Trail. Blue dotted ........ line on map.
This walk is about 5 km long and should take approximately 1 hours 30 minutes to complete.
On your way…. True wilderness is surprisingly hard to find in Ireland but the visitor can enjoy a taste of it in the calming atmosphere of the Mushera Moor Trail. The trail gently leads you from scenic viewpoints suddenly changing to sheltered hollows or slopes in the moor that seem to absorb all but the sound of bird song or nearby waterfalls. The trail initiates at point 33 in the Entrance Car Park.  Waterfalls along the Walking Trail Mushera Moor It rises north-westerly over the Heather and Moorgrass to a rocky bluff at point 34 which at 365m above sea level marks the highest ground in the Park. Musheramore Mountain rises further behind to 644m above sea level. Views beckon in many directions here. Macroom is visible to the south-west on a clear day as are the reservoirs beyond that serve the city of Cork. Progressing further you encounter a window on the Derrynasaggart Mountains, Clara Mountain rounded on top, Mullaghanish with its T.V. mast, historic Caherbarnagh and the Paps of Danu beyond. The Celtic goddess, Danu gives her name to the River Danube in central Europe, and she has appellation in Sanskrit literature, She is mother to Don the Welsh wizard and Tuatha De Danann held sway in her court. The sight of the mammiform peaks beyond and the surviving folklore testify to the colour of the ancient Celtic civilization and to its influence in our lives. As you continue across the moor you may notice Wood Sedge, Luzula sylvatica a relic of the woodland that once covered the hillsides locally, long since covered by peat. Here there is a fold or ravine, formed between the northern slope of Mushera mountain and the crest of the park moorland. This ravine drains beneath the bridge off to the north before turning east and eventually joining the Abannban River. At this altitude, the degree of shelter here is notable and with seating provided, it is worth pausing for a moment before tackling the trail further. Pathways allow close access to the streams where aquatic plants are already appearing. The effect of weather and geology on life is also more obvious here, affording a diversity of interlinked open classroom subjects. Having covered the Mushera Moor Trail itself which is marked at point 35 you will come upon the Moor Junction at point 44. This T-junction offers a left turn which makes a swift return to the Main Entrance Walk at point 40.  Cranog on the Walking Trail Mushera Moor A right turn will lead towards the Mushera Ravine Circuit and is the way this particular walk progresses. The ravine quickly opens out in front of you and on descending the Wagtail Bridge is crossed at point 45. Having crossed the bridge and entering the ravine you may well notice some evidence of turf cutting. Cutting was carried out over the expanse of the moor during the past centuries. Earlier in this century a plank of wood was discovered ant later identified as being part of and Alder wood deer trap with Yew wood spring clips still intact. It was dated at about 1500 years old and is currently held by the National Museum. A swift right turn from Wagtail Bridge takes you the Viewing Point and Waterfall at point 47. This waterfall in indeed the tallest within the park and the viewpoint has been specially built to overlook the ravine and beyond. A Short climb beyond the viewpoint a Wishing Well stands at point 48 high in the eastern corner of the park where even the hardiest ramblers may indeed wish to rest and water themselves. Continuing on, the scenery of the upper Blackwater valley fills out towards the horizon on your right as you come upon Ravens Bridge at point 50. The Main Entrance Walk is then just around the corner at point 51 and having completed the trail you can make the journey down through the park by various routes. This walk is about 5 km long and should take approximately 1 hours 30 minutes to complete.

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