Thursday, September 15, 2022

Ashlea Cox enjoys a hike on the Blackstairs Mountains at the launch of the Carlow Autumn Walking Festival, which takes place from Friday 30 September to Sunday 2 October                                                                                                                                                                                                                Photo: Marc O’Sullivan


By Suzanne Pender

FOLLOW me up to Carlow might be an old marching tune from times past, but the title is very apt today with a callout to all Carlow walkers to step it out.

Carlow Tourism is inviting walkers of all standards to come to Co Carlow for its Carlow Autumn Walking Festival 2022. With a selection of 17 walks to choose from, ranked A, B and C in order of their difficulty and duration, this festival, which takes place from Friday 30 September to Sunday 2 October, is all-encompassing.

It caters for those who love a leisurely walk, taking in and learning more about nature and their general surroundings, the walker with a thirst for history, those energised by the challenge of an invigorating mountain trek, the novice hillwalker, photographic enthusiasts and those who like the stillness of mindfulness.

The walks are graded and timed to suit the capabilities of walkers in each category. All walks end with light refreshments, giving participants the opportunity to recap on their experiences.

Walking has become a popular pastime over the past two years and the organisers expect to see an increase in the number of people visiting this year.

All walks are led by knowledgeable local guides from Tullow Mountaineering club, Blackstairs Ramblers and local walking enthusiasts and are of varying duration, from 1.5-7  hours.

“We look forward to welcoming returning walkers and many new visitors to Carlow for our annual walking festival,” said chairman of Carlow Tourism Michael Walsh when he launched the festival.

“We hope the variety we have included has something for everyone, be it the walk with well-known biologist and RTÉ personality Éanna Ní Lamhna, who leads a walk around John’s Hill discovering the habitats and flora and fauna of this special area on Saturday 1 October, the photographic walk in Kilbrannish Forest North Recreation Area, led by Richard Smyth, , or the outdoor mindfulness meditation walk in Altamont Gardens, led by mindfulness expert Jack Byrne, who will provide down-to-earth and practical tips to reconnect for improved mental and physical health and psychological wellbeing,” said Michael.

For further information on the walks, starting points and rules of participation and to book the walks, log on to or phone 059 9130411.

The Carlow Autumn Walking Festival is supported by Carlow Co Council under the festival and events scheme.



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