Derrycassin Woodland Trail
Derrycassin Wood is scenically located on the shores of Lough Gowna in Dring, County Longford. The forest covers an area of 179 acres and consists of three recommended walks, the Nature Trail, the Walled Garden Walk and the Main Avenue Walk. Signposting onsite directs the walkers on the various routes but the visitor is welcome to explore and create their own walking route. There are a variety of tree species, wild flowers and fungi to admire although what you find will depend on the time of year you visit. There are interesting low linear hills that date back to the ice age and also the remains of a rath or ringforth dated between 500-1500 AD. There are picnic benches and a lovely playground in the vicinity, so an ideal place for a family day out.
Derrycassin Woods were once part of a larger estate that belonged to the Dopping Heppenstall family. Derrycassin House was built in 1760 and at the time boasted beautiful walled gardens and an orchard which supplied the main house with fruit and vegetables. Unfortunately the house no longer exists, but an afternoon spent walking the woods and taking in the splendid views of the lovely Lough Gowna transports the visitor back in time as many of the tracks are broadly the same as those used by the original owners. The lands of Derrycassin were acquired by the forestry department in the 1960’s and are now managed as a commercial forest by Coillte.
For more information on Derrycassin Woodland Trails please see Discover Ireland - Longford Walks.
Points of Interest: You can push a boat out at Dring and make your way across the waters of Lough Gowna to Inchmore Island. St Columba (or Columbcille) established a monastery there in the sixth century. The ruins are still there to be explored, however, so you can contemplate the monastic life in splendid natural surroundings.