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Killykeen Forest Park

Killykeen Forest Park is a beautiful mixed woodlands park, comprising 600 acres, woven around the lake and islands of Lough Oughter (pronounced Ooter).

  • Killykeen lies four miles west of Cavan town on the Killeshandra Road (R199)
  • Lough Oughter  forms part of the labyrinth of waterways know as the Erne River system, which is now directly linked to Ireland's longest river, the Shannon

Flora and Fauna

Wildlife includes trees such as the Norway and Sitka spruce, ash, oak, birch, sycamore, beech and alder, and animals such as stoat, grey squirrel, badger, fox, hedgehog, and rabbit. Various birds can be seen on the lake or in the woodlands, such as herons, coot, cormorant, great crested grebe, mallard, moorhen, tufted duck, wagtail, kingfisher, warblers and reed bunting.

Activities

  • Canoeing, windsurfing and other watersports can be enjoyed on Lough Oughter
  • Boats and bikes are available for hire in the area

Fishing

  • There are several popular fishing spots on Lough Oughter, which can be accessed through the Forest Park
  • Boats are available from the Coillte reception, though not required
  • Pike and Roach fishing is particularly good
  • Bream and Perch are also caught here

Walking and Cycling Trails

The park boasts a number of walking trails (which are also ideal for cycling), which range in length from 1.5km to 2.8km, each offering magical views of the wild flora and fauna. The main trail is the Dernish walking trail. Items of historical interest include

  • An Iron Age ring fort
  • Clogh Oughter castle

Clogh Oughter Castle

  • This thirteenth century castle stands on an island
  • It was originally owned by the Norman De Lacys, but was later reclaimed by the O'Reilly chieftains of the area
  • An excavation in 1987 produced human remains dating from the Cromwellian siege of the castle in 1653

Image

Lake at Killykeen. Image: Gerard Lovett

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