- Name Beara Breifne Way
- Length of trail 500 km, 311 miles
- Length in days 25 days
- Start of trail Dursey Head
- End of trail Blacklion
- Traildino grading MW, Moderate walk, backpacking trail
- Hut tour grading T1, Walk
Beara Breifne Way, Dursey Head - Blacklion, 500 km, 25 days
The idea behind this long distance path is O'Sullivan's march in the winter of 1602 / 1603.
The story is this: Donal Cam O'Sullivan, chieftain of the Beare clan, fought the English, but was defeated eventually. This forced him and 1000 man, women and children of his clan to flee. In two weeks time, they walked from Beara in the south all the way to Leitrim in the north. Only 35 of his people were said to be with him when arriving in O'Rourke's castle. Others were killed, starved to death or choosed to settle somewhere en route.
This key element of Irish history lays model for the Beara Breifne Way. A trail of 500 km, almost a month of walking, through the heart of Ireland, is the result. You can relive the epic march of O'Sullivan, without having to fight hostile Gaelic clans, starved to near death after so many years of war.
The Beara Breifne Way was not finished by the time of this writing, 2013, but - say - 95% is done. Most of the traject consists of already existing trails. The home page is unduly stimulating your appetite by magnifying every detail, so it remains to be seen what comments the first thruwalkers will have. Looking on the map, however, the trail looks very varied, pretty demanding, and a great opportunity to experience lesser known Ireland. Like all Irish Ways, you will frequently find yourself on small, quiet tarmac roads, on muddy hill tracks or in spooky conifer plantations. Villages, B&B, towns and Inns are there. Documentation, information, maps, way marking are all sufficiently available, but not yet perfect to the inch.
Here's an outline of the trail:
- Beara Way, Dursey Island - Glengarriff - Kealkil An Chaolchaoill , approx. 100 km, 5 days
- Slí Gaeltacht Mhúscrai, Kealkil An Chaolchaoill - Millstreet, approx 50 km, 3 days
- North Cork Way, Millstreet - Lismire / John Bridge, approx. 25 km, 1 day
- Ballyhoura Way, Freemount / St. John's Bridge - Tipperary / Limerick Junction, 89 km, 4 days
- Multeen Way, Tipperary Town - Milestone / Upperchurch, 23 km, 1 day
- Ormond Way, Upperchurch - Portumna, under construction (2013), approx. 75 km, 3 days
- Hymany Way, Portumna Bridge - Aughrim - Ballygar, 90 km, 4 days
- Suck Valley Way, Ballygar - Ballymoe, approx. 50 km, 2 days
- Connecting trail, Ballymoe - Loughlynn, approx. 40 km, 2 days
- Lung Way / Lough Gara Way, Loughlynn / Ballinlough - Ballinafad, under construction 2013
- Miners Way / Historical Trail, Ballinafad - Leitrim, approx. 40 km, 2 days
- Leitrim Way, Leitrim - Dowra, 48 km, 2 days
- Cavan Way, Dowra - Blacklion, 26 km, 1 day
- Connects to Ulster Way